The Braves have struggled with starting pitching throughout the season, but Ian Anderson found very little resistance against the Cubs on Tuesday. The rookie right-hander worked seven shutout innings, allowing just one hit and striking out eight in route to a 5-0 Braves win.
The immense talent of Ian Anderson stole the show in this game, but Cubs starter Trevor Williams matched up quite well through four innings, blanking the Braves until the fifth inning. The offensive blockade would desist in the fifth inning, when Ronald Acuna blasted a 481-foot homer to left field, staking the Braves to a 1-0 lead. It was Acuna’s eighth homer of the season, which ties him for the league lead. Atlanta would add another run in the fifth inning on an RBI double from Ozzie Albies, which would be more than enough run support for Ian Anderson.
Anderson remained in the game for two more innings, leaving after seven with a 2-0 lead. He became the first Braves starter to work seven innings this season, which could explain some of the struggles amongst the relief corps of late. Having a starter pitch deep into just one game could pay dividends throughout the staff, and the Braves have to hope that some momentum might carry over to other members of the rotation.
AJ Minter entered to work the eighth inning and promptly retired the Cubs in order with two strikeouts. The Braves added some insurance in the bottom-half of the frame, scoring three runs, which were plated by RBI singles from Dansby Swanson and Pablo Sandoval, along with a bases-loaded walk from Freddie Freeman. This gave the Braves a 5-0 lead, which they turned over to Jacob Webb in the ninth inning.
Webb worked quickly through the top of the Cubs order, capping off a great night for the staff and completing the shutout for a 5-0 win. The Braves pull within one game of .500 and can now focus on securing a series victory over the next two days.