Defending champion Braves formally clinch playoff spot after beating Nationals

ATLANTA (AP) — Braves supervisor Brian Snitker wasn’t overly enthusiastic about his workforce clinching a playoff berth.

He would’ve most well-liked that the Milwaukee Brewers had overwhelmed the New York Mets so Atlanta can be in a first-place tie within the NL East.

You are reading: Defending champion Braves formally clinch playoff spot after beating Nationals

“I hope Milwaukee comes again, fairly actually,” Snitker stated earlier than the Mets completed off the Brewers. “But when we get within the door, we give ourselves an opportunity. That is what we need to do. The No. 1 factor is we need to win the division and we’re proper there to make that occur, however it’s good to provide your self a chance while you get within the match.”

Travis d’Arnaud broke a scoreless tie with a two-run homer within the fourth inning, Dansby Swanson went deep within the eighth, and the Braves beat the Washington Nationals 3-2 Tuesday evening and clinched a playoff berth.

The defending World Collection champion Braves secured their journey to the postseason when Milwaukee misplaced to the Mets 7-5 lower than half-hour later. Atlanta (93-55) can also be vying for its fifth consecutive division title, however remained in second place, one recreation behind the New York within the NL East.

There was no celebration within the clubhouse after the sport. Nation music performed softly within the background as a couple of gamers milled about and talked quietly.

The Braves have a lot larger objectives in thoughts than simply making the playoffs.

“Clearly we’re aiming for increased, however making the playoffs is a giant deal,” d’Arnaud stated. “Quite a lot of Corridor of Famers performed their complete profession and by no means made it to the playoffs. However for us it is a easy as attempt to win each collection. It is a marathon. It is not over.”

Swanson added his twenty first homer, an opposite-field solo shot to proper off Kyle Finnegan that sailed 379 toes and padded the result in 3-1. The Braves have gained 10 straight video games at residence, outscoring opponents 47-15 over this stretch. Atlanta is 52-25 at Truist Park and has the NL’s second-best profitable share in residence video games.

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Matt Olson singled with out within the fourth earlier than d’Arnaud hit his 18th homer, a 422-foot shot off Erasmo Ramírez (4-2) that made it 2-0.

Charlie Morton (8-6) allowed one run and three hits with three walks and 9 strikeouts in 5 1/3 innings. He didn’t surrender successful till Victor Robles singled with one out within the third. Robles superior on a throwing error by Morton on a pickoff transfer, however Morton struck out the subsequent two batters to finish the menace.

Morton prevented bother within the 31-pitch fourth. He issued a pair of two-out walks, and the runners superior on a wild pitch earlier than Morton hit CJ Abrams with a pitch to load the bases. The 38-year-old right-hander struck out Ildemaro Vargas to flee the jam.

The last-place Nationals trimmed the result in 2-1 within the sixth. Joey Meneses doubled and superior to 3rd on Luke Voit’s single that chased Morton. Collin McHugh had an opportunity to get out of the jam, however second baseman Vaughn Grissom made a throwing error on a possible double play grounder that scored Meneses and put runners at second and third.

McHugh retired the subsequent two batters to keep away from additional injury.

Morton improved to 6-1 with a 2.88 ERA in 15 residence begins this season.

Kenley Jansen confronted seven batters within the ninth for his NL-leading thirty sixth save in 43 possibilities. The primary two batters reached with out the ball leaving the infield earlier than Jansen struck out the subsequent two batters. Luis García delivered a run-scoring single to make it 3-2, Meneses was deliberately walked, and Luke Voit flew out to finish it with the bases loaded.

Atlanta is 26-8 in opposition to Washington over the past two years. The Braves have gone deep 35 instances in opposition to the Nationals this season and lead the NL with 224 homers.

Washington starter Patrick Corbin left the sport with two outs within the first with again spasms. He had a 1-1 rely on Matt Olson when Corbin stepped again off the mound and bent over and time was referred to as. Supervisor Dave Martinez and a coach got here out to see about Corbin, who quickly walked off the sector below his personal energy.

“The final pitch that I threw, it grabbed on me,” Corbin stated. “I am not fairly positive what it’s, however I simply tried to hang around there so long as I may to see if it will go away, however it did not. I am just a bit sore now.”

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Ramírez took over and retired 5 in a row earlier than Grissom reached on an infield single within the third. Corbin had misplaced 9 consecutive begins in opposition to Atlanta and had a 7.28 ERA over that stretch.

For the Braves, the sport and the postseason berth have been form of ho-hum affair. Snitker wasn’t stunned that no person was within the temper to have a good time.

“No, everyone’s drained,” Snitker stated. “These guys need to go residence and get a great evening’s sleep becasue that (12:20 p.m.) recreation will come early tomorrow.”

TRAINER’S ROOM

Nationals: Martinez stated DH Nelson Cruz (eye irritation) continues to be not able to face massive league pitching and can keep out of the lineup till he’s prepared. … LHP MacKenzie Gore (left shoulder irritation) reported no issues after his bullpen session and can make a rehab begin with Triple-A Rochester on Friday.

Braves: RHP Spencer Strider has a sore left indirect and won’t make his subsequent begin Saturday in Philadelphia. Snitker stated Strider is not going to go on the injured record and can play catch till he’s able to return to the rotation. … Jansen tweaked his neck attempting to subject the primary ball that was put in play within the ninth. Snitker stated he wasn’t positive if the nearer would be capable of pitch on Wednesday.

NICE MOVES

Atlanta SS Dansby Swanson made a sliding, backhanded cease of Meneses’ onerous grounder within the fourth and threw the runner out simply from the outfield grass. … Robles ran onerous to his left in middle subject and made a diving catch of d’Arnaud’s liner to finish the sixth.

UP NEXT

Braves rookie RHP Bryce Elder (1-3, 3.67 ERA) will make his seventh begin because the groups conclude a three-game collection with a 12:20 p.m. begin. The Nationals will begin Paolo Espino.

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