Fried, Braves beat Pirates 3-1 for 8th straight win

Jun 9, 2022, 6:56 AM | Updated: Jun 10, 2022, 11:43 am
Atlanta Braves outfielders from left; Adam Duvall (14), Marcell Ozuna (2) and Ronald Acuna Jr. (13)...

Atlanta Braves outfielders from left; Adam Duvall (14), Marcell Ozuna (2) and Ronald Acuna Jr. (13) celebrate after defeating the Pittsburgh Pirates in a baseball game Thursday ,June 9, 2022, in Atlanta. (AP Photo/John Bazemore)

(AP Photo/John Bazemore)

              Atlanta Braves outfielders from left; Adam Duvall (14), Marcell Ozuna (2) and Ronald Acuna Jr. (13) celebrate after defeating the Pittsburgh Pirates in a baseball game Thursday ,June 9, 2022, in Atlanta. (AP Photo/John Bazemore)
            
              Atlanta Braves relief pitcher Kenley Jansen (74) works the ninth inning of a baseball game against the Pittsburgh Pirates Thursday,June 9, 2022, in Atlanta. The Braves won and Jansen earned the save. (AP Photo/John Bazemore)
            
              Atlanta Braves manager Brian Snitker (43) looks on from the dugout as his team plays the Pittsburgh Pirates in a baseball game Thursday, June 9, 2022, in Atlanta. (AP Photo/John Bazemore)
            
              Pittsburgh Pirates' Bryan Reynolds (10) breaks his bat as he grounds out in the eighth inning of a baseball game against the Atlanta Braves, Thursday, June 9, 2022, in Atlanta. (AP Photo/John Bazemore)
            
              Atlanta Braves outfielders from left; Adam Duvall (14), Marcell Ozuna (2) and Ronald Acuna Jr. (13) celebrate after defeating the Pittsburgh Pirates in a baseball game Thursday ,June 9, 2022, in Atlanta. (AP Photo/John Bazemore)
            
              Atlanta Braves relief pitcher Kenley Jansen (74) works the ninth inning of a baseball game against the Pittsburgh Pirates Thursday,June 9, 2022, in Atlanta. The Braves won and Jansen earned the save. (AP Photo/John Bazemore)
            
              Atlanta Braves manager Brian Snitker (43) looks on from the dugout as his team plays the Pittsburgh Pirates in a baseball game Thursday, June 9, 2022, in Atlanta. (AP Photo/John Bazemore)
            
              Pittsburgh Pirates' Bryan Reynolds (10) breaks his bat as he grounds out in the eighth inning of a baseball game against the Atlanta Braves, Thursday, June 9, 2022, in Atlanta. (AP Photo/John Bazemore)
            
              Pittsburgh Pirates starting pitcher JT Brubaker works against the Atlanta Braves during the first inning of a baseball game Thursday, June 9, 2022, in Atlanta. (AP Photo/John Bazemore)
            
              Pittsburgh Pirates manager Derek Shelton watches from the dugout during the first inning of the team's baseball game against the Atlanta Braves on Thursday, June 9, 2022, in Atlanta. (AP Photo/John Bazemore)
            
              Pittsburgh Pirates' Jack Suwinski is showered with sunflower seeds after his home run against the Atlanta Braves during the fourth inning of a baseball game Thursday, June 9, 2022, in Atlanta. (AP Photo/John Bazemore)
            
              Atlanta Braves second baseman Ozzie Albies (1) prepares to tag out Pittsburgh Pirates' Ke'Bryan Hayes (13), who was caught in a rundown during the first inning of a baseball game Thursday, June 9, 2022, in Atlanta. (AP Photo/John Bazemore)
            
              Atlanta Braves' Dansby Swanson (7) scores ahead of the throw to Pittsburgh Pirates catcher Tyler Heineman (54) on a Travis d'Arnaud double during the third inning of a baseball game Thursday, June 9, 2022, in Atlanta. (AP Photo/John Bazemore)
            
              Atlanta Braves' Ronald Acuna Jr. steals second base during the third inning of the team's baseball game against the Pittsburgh Pirates on Thursday, June 9, 2022, in Atlanta. (AP Photo/John Bazemore)
            
              Pittsburgh Pirates' Jack Suwinski watches his solo home run in the fourth inning of the team's baseball game against the Atlanta Braves on Thursday, June 9, 2022, in Atlanta. (AP Photo/John Bazemore)
            
              Atlanta Braves' Travis d'Arnaud watches his RBI double during the third inning of the team's baseball game against the Pittsburgh Pirates on Thursday, June 9, 2022, in Atlanta. (AP Photo/John Bazemore)
            
              Atlanta Braves starting pitcher Max Fried delivers in the first inning of the team's baseball game against the Pittsburgh Pirates on Thursday, June 9, 2022, in Atlanta. (AP Photo/John Bazemore)

ATLANTA (AP) — Max Fried found a way to win even without having his best stuff.

“Definitely had to work tonight,” he said. “A couple of defensive plays bailed me out of it and it’s also nice when you get a couple of runs early to try and settle in with the lead and try to hold it.”

Fried won his sixth straight decision by pitching six tough innings and the Atlanta Braves earned their eighth consecutive victory, 3-1 over the Pittsburgh Pirates on Thursday night.

Adam Duvall, Dansby Swanson and Travis d’Arnaud each drove in a run for the defending World Series champions, whose winning streak is their longest since they took nine in a row last August. Atlanta has outscored opponents 55-21 during this streak.

Fried (6-2) pitched out of a jam in the first and the third before Jack Suwinski hit his eighth homer to trim the lead to 3-1 in the fourth and end a string of 16 consecutive scoreless innings for the lefty.

Fried worked around eight hits, striking out eight and walking none. His 44 wins since the start of 2019 are most in the NL and second in the majors, four behind he Yankees’ Gerrit Cole.

In his last 10 starts, Fried is 6-0 with a 2.11 ERA and has pitched at least six innings each time he’s taken a turn in the rotation. The Braves are 8-2 over that span.

“Just knowing I might not have had the best stuff or didn’t physically feel my best, but I know when I went out there I still had to do what I can to get outs and get us through six innings,” Fried said. “You just try to figure out a way, whether it’s relying on what’s working that day or change game plans. It’s a lot of communication with Travis.”

Ronald Acuña Jr. was hit by a pitch in the third, stole second and scored when Swanson lifted an opposite-field bloop single to right. Swanson scored from first on d’Arnaud’s two-out double down the left-field line to make it 3-0.

Atlanta went ahead in the second when d’Arnaud walked, advanced on a single and a grounder and scored on Duvall’s single.

Will Smith faced the minimum in the seventh for the Braves, A.J. Minter pitched the eighth and closer Kenley Jansen got his 16th save in 19 chances with a perfect ninth.

Pirates starter JT Brubaker (0-6) retired 12 straight batters before Michael Harris II singled with two outs in the seventh. Brubaker gave up three runs and six hits with two walks and seven strikeouts.

“I feel like I threw the ball well,” Brubaker said. “I felt good. The one thing that stands out is the hit by pitch and the four-pitch walk. Can’t defend walks. They put the ball in play and ended up getting those two guys across on free passes. Balls found holes. Balls fell in right in the no-man’s land. D’Arnaud hit a good pitch, and I stuck to the same game plan.”

Fried stranded four runners in scoring position. He was helped by an adept double play turned by Swanson at shortstop to end the fifth.

“It wasn’t as tough a grind as some of them were, but he had to work,” Braves manager Brian Snitker said. “A few mis-hit balls, a couple of balls hit hard. He was in trouble a lot but he always seems to find a way to reach back and get out of it. Dansby turns a great double play one inning to get him out of it.”

Fried allowed three hits in the first, but his pickoff at first base of leadoff hitter Ke’Bryan Hayes proved fortuitous when Bryan Reynolds and Michael Chavis followed with singles. He struck out Diego Castillo to end the threat.

Fried’s 16 pickoffs since the start of 2019 are most in the majors. He has 21 in his career.

GOING DEEP

Suwinski’s eight homers are most among NL rookies, and his three long balls against lefties are the second most by a Pittsburgh rookie left-handed hitter since Garrett Jones hit six in 2009. Suwinski has hit safely in each of his last eight games, going 12 for 30 with two doubles, three homers and five RBIs.

TRAINER’S ROOM

Pirates RHP Nick Mears (elbow surgery) had his rehab transferred from to Triple-A Indianapolis after he struck out six in four scoreless innings — a span of four relief appearances — with low-A Bradenton. … Pittsburgh RHP Heath Hembree (right calf strain) has begun a rehab assignment with Indianapolis. He pitched a scoreless inning on Wednesday.

UP NEXT

Pittsburgh’s Roansy Contreras (1-0, 1.93 ERA) will face Spencer Strider (1-2, 2.76) in the second game of a four-game series. Contreras will make his fourth start and seventh appearance. Strider will make his third start and 14th appearance.

___

More AP MLB: https://apnews.com/hub/MLB and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports

Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

AP

San Francisco 49ers' Jauan Jennings, left, and Trey Lance embrace on the bench in the final minute ...
Associated Press

49ers head into offseason with more questions at quarterback

SANTA CLARA, Calif. (AP) — The San Francisco 49ers head into another offseason with major questions at quarterback after a season filled with injuries to the most important position ended without any of them physically able to throw the the ball downfield. Trey Lance, who began the season as starter, is getting close to being […]
15 hours ago
Brazil's President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva  waits for the arrival of the German Chancellor Olaf S...
Associated Press

Brazilian volleyball player suspended over Lula poll

SAO PAULO (AP) — Brazilian volleyball club Cruzeiro suspended Olympic gold medalist Wallace de Souza on Tuesday after he conducted a social media poll asking his fans whether they would shoot Brazil’s President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva in the face. The 35-year-old de Souza, who played on Brazil’s winning team at the Rio de […]
15 hours ago
FILE - New Orleans Saints head coach Sean Payton watches a play during an NFL football game against...
Associated Press

AP source: Broncos get Payton as coach in deal with Saints

ENGLEWOOD, Colo. (AP) — The Denver Broncos have agreed to a deal with the New Orleans Saints that will make Sean Payton their head coach, a person with knowledge of the accord said Tuesday. The person, who spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity because the teams hadn’t announced the agreement, said the […]
15 hours ago
San Francisco 49ers' defensive coordinator DeMeco Ryans walks off the field after Philadelphia Eagl...
Associated Press

AP source: Texans hire DeMeco Ryans as head coach

HOUSTON (AP) — DeMeco Ryans has been hired as coach of the Houston Texans, a person with knowledge of the decision told The Associated Press on Tuesday. The person spoke on the condition on anonymity since the hiring had not been announced. The move gives him his first head coaching job and brings him back […]
15 hours ago
Associated Press

Minnesota football players’ discrimination lawsuit dismissed

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — A federal judge has dismissed a lawsuit filed by nine former University of Minnesota football players who were accused of sexual assault in 2016 in a case that roiled the school’s football program. The lawsuit against the school claimed that the players faced emotional distress and financial damage after being falsely accused […]
2 days ago
FILE - NASCAR Cup Series driver Ross Chastain speaks during the NASCAR Championship media day, Nov....
Associated Press

NASCAR bans Chastain’s wall-hugging move at Martinsville

NASCAR has essentially banned the “Hail Melon” video-game move driver Ross Chastain used at Martinsville Speedway to race his way into the championship finale. Chastain last year mashed the gas and deliberately smashed into the wall so that the energy would speed his car past his rivals. The move advanced him into NASCAR’s title-deciding final […]
2 days ago
Fried, Braves beat Pirates 3-1 for 8th straight win