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The Daily Chop: Home run barrage continues, bullpen depth and more

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Atlanta leads the majors in homers.

MLB: MAY 22 Pirates at Braves Photo by Joe Robbins/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

The Atlanta Braves cranked three more home runs in a 6-1 win over the Pittsburgh Pirates Saturday giving them 10 homers in their last two games. Despite their persistent at times offensive struggles, the Braves lead the majors by a wide margin with 75 home runs. Ronald Acuña Jr. hit the first pitch of Saturday’s game over the wall for his 22nd career leadoff bomb and his majors leading 15th of the season. Ozzie Albies accounted for the other two homers giving him three in two days.

Bryse Wilson was recalled from Gwinnett to make Saturday’s start and turned in a great effort allowing five hits and one run over 6 2/3 innings. Atlanta’s rotation has quietly rounded into shape in May posting a 2.97 ERA which is the fourth best mark in the majors.

More Braves News

Shane Greene made his first appearance for Gwinnett Saturday night and allowed a lead off double before striking out the next three hitters. Brian Snitker said Saturday that there was no set timetable on how much time Greene will need at Gwinnett before he is ready to join the active roster.

The Braves acquired reliever Yoan Lopez from the Arizona Diamondbacks Saturday in exchange for minor league outfielder Deivi Estrada. Lopez had been designated for assignment by the Diamondbacks after posting a 6.57 ERA and a 5.66 FIP in 12 1/3 innings.

MLB News

The Pirates have been outscored 26-2 in their last two games against the Braves but there was a bit of good news on Saturday. Injured third baseman Ke’Bryan Hayes began a rehab assignment with Triple-A Indianapolis Saturday. Hayes is currently on the 60-day injured list due to a wrist strain and won’t be eligible to return to the active roster until June 3.

Cardinals starter Miles Mikolas left Saturday’s start after four innings due to right forearm tightness. Saturday was his first start in 19 months after he missed the entire 2020 season after surgery to repair the flexor tendon in his right forearm. He was then delayed for two months this season due to a shoulder issue.

Rangers pitcher Kohei Arihara has an aneurysm in his right shoulder and is slated for surgery that is expected to keep him out of action for at least three months.

The Toronto Blue Jays placed Cavan Biggio on the 10-day injured list due to a neck sprain. Blue Jays’ manager Charlie Montoyo called it a nagging injury and the team is hoping that it will just be a 10-day stint on the injured list for Biggio.

The Milwaukee Brewers released infielder Dee Strange-Gordon. Strange-Gordon signed a minor league deal with Milwaukee in April but the recent addition Willy Adames lessened any chance he had of finding a spot on the major league roster.

Scott Kazmir made his first big league appearance since 2016 Saturday when he started and allowed two hits and one run over four innings against the Dodgers. Kazmir spent a brief period with the Braves after he was acquired as part of the trade that sent Matt Kemp back to the Dodgers in December, 2017. Kazmir went to spring training with Atlanta in 2018 but was released at the end of March. He pitched in Independent ball in 2020 and signed a minor league deal with the Giants in February.