Los Angeles Dodgers

Max Fried stifles Dodgers as Braves beat L.A. 6-3 for 5th win in a row

Newlywed star Ronald Acuña Jr. hit his 31st homer and stole his 63rd base, Max Fried tossed seven shutout innings and the Atlanta Braves defeated the Los Angeles Dodgers 6-3.

Atlanta Braves v Los Angeles Dodgers

Newlywed star Ronald Acuña Jr. hit his 31st homer and stole his 63rd base, Max Fried tossed seven shutout innings and the Atlanta Braves defeated the Los Angeles Dodgers 6-3 on Friday night for their fifth straight win.

The Braves (89-45) lead the Dodgers (83-51) by six games for the best record in the majors and potential home-field advantage throughout the postseason. Atlanta pounded out 14 hits in sending the Dodgers to a second consecutive loss for the first time since the end of July.

Acuña was at it again one night after he got married during the day and in the evening became baseball's first player with 30 home runs and 60 stolen bases in the same season.

He went deep leading off the third inning against Julio Urías (11-8), flexing his muscles as the 418-foot shot landed beyond the center-field fence. In the fifth, Acuña doubled leading off, stole third and scored on Austin Riley's RBI double off the bullpen gate in right.

For the second straight game, Acuña got the better of rival NL MVP candidate Mookie Betts. Betts, who hit .455 in August, was 0 for 3 with a strikeout to open September before being lifted in the eighth.

Fried struck out six of the first eight batters he faced. The Dodgers didn’t get their first hit until Miguel Rojas' single with two outs in the third. They didn't advance a runner to second until there were two outs in the seventh.

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Fried (6-1) allowed three hits, including singles to Freddie Freeman and Amed Rosario, struck out a season-high 10 and walked two. It was the left-hander's fourth career game with double-digit strikeouts and first since Aug. 30, 2019, against the Chicago White Sox.

Kirby Yates pitched the ninth to earn his third save.

Travis d'Arnaud homered in the second and Marcell Ozuna hit his 32nd homer leading off the fourth.

Ozuna added a bloop RBI single in the fifth and doubled leading off the eighth. He scored on Eddie Rosario's single for a 6-0 lead.

The Dodgers rallied with three runs in the eighth after Betts and Freeman were removed for pinch-hitters.

Kolten Wong had a pinch-hit, three-run homer with two outs in his Dodgers debut, cutting their deficit to 6-3. Will Smith walked and Amed Rosario singled off Pierce Johnson, bringing Chris Taylor to the plate as the potential tying run. He went down swinging against Michael Tonkin.

Acuña raced in to make a knee-high catch for the second out of the ninth.

Urías gave up five runs and nine hits in five innings of his second straight loss. The left-hander struck out four and walked two.

Eddie Rosario was caught stealing home in the second. Urías' throw bounced in the dirt and catcher Will Smith one-handed it, tagging Rosario to save the run.

TRAINER'S ROOM

Braves: All-Star catcher Sean Murphy got the night off.

Dodgers: DH J.D. Martinez (groin) will play a couple of rehab games with Triple-A Oklahoma City starting Sunday and is on track to rejoin the team in Washington next week. ... RHP Joe Kelly (forearm) threw a 20-pitch bullpen, using all his pitches and touching the mid-90s on the radar gun.

UP NEXT

RHP Bryce Elder (11-4, 3.50 ERA) starts for the Braves on Saturday. The Dodgers are likely to either start RHP Emmet Sheehan (3-1, 5.63) or use him for bulk innings. He just returned for his second stint with the team.

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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