Atlanta— In another all-around effort game, the Braves defeated the Dodgers 5-3 in front of a raucous crowd of 37,617 to clinch their first series win over Los Angeles in 6 years.
Although it was another series victory for the youthful Braves, this game will be overshadowed by the benching of Ronald Acuna after his lack of hustle.
But at the moment, all is good for the Atlanta Braves.
Fried helped his own cause by roping a double to start the third, and Acuna soon followed with what he thought was a smashed a home run over the right-field wall. He walked to first base, admiring his home run, and holding his bat like it was his firstborn. But of course, the ball did not leave the yard and Acuna only reached first base. That type of show-boating will make a manager pull out his hair, but luckily Braves manager Brian Snitker already has no hair.
“He didn’t run,” Snitker said. “You have to run. It’s not going to be acceptable here. As a teammate, you’re responsible for 24 other guys. That name on the front is a lot more important than the name on the back of that jersey.”
Snitker called Acuna into the dugout steps leading to the clubhouse. The two met for a few minutes, and Acuna was removed from the game. Acuna said, through his translator, “There’s no excuse for it, so I just took it and said ‘of course.’ He’s the manager, I’m the player, and I’ll ultimately respect his decision.”
Tony Gonsolin started for the Dodgers and was looking to continue his streak of not allowing an earned run. And he looked excellent early on, commanding swing and misses along with inducing soft contact.
But his success was short-lived, after a couple of two-out hits from Matt Joyce and Adeiny Hechavarria cut the lead to 3-1 after four innings.
Gonsolin provided 72 pitches and four innings, allowing just one run on five hits and no walks, striking out two.
After Pedro Baez pitched a clean inning in the fifth, Dustin May entered to start the 6th with a clean slate. With Los Angeles 19.5 games up over the second-place San Francisco Giants, they can afford to blow a few games while the bullpen is holding tryouts before October.
Dustin May had his first test out of the bullpen this afternoon on a humid Atlanta Sunday. He's used to these conditions since he's a born and raised Texas boy.
He did not pass his first test this afternoon.
Brian McCann walked after being down two strikes, Matt Joyce singled, and Adeiny Hechavarria reached after being hit by a pitch with two strikes. May reached two strikes on Ortega with the bases loaded and in typical Dodgers fashion, boom grand slam.
You can see a pattern with May not being able to put batters away when he gets two strikes on them. It's been quite evident since his first start. He will need to figure that out if he wants to make the postseason roster.
Kenley Jansen pitched in the 8th, and finished a 1-2-3 inning.
The Braves bullpen for the second night in a row pitched flawlessly and did not allow a run to score.
The Dodgers went 1-6 with RISP, finishing 1 for their last 22. The Dodgers fall to 82-44.