Braves face Nationals in 1st home Spring Training Game of 2019
Cover Photo: MLB.com
By. Andrew Rodberg
In the third Spring Training game of 2019, the Braves sent out Max Fried to take on the Nationals. In 2018, Fried had a 1-4 record and held a 2.94 ERA. He was mostly used out of the bullpen after having some issues early in the season.
On Monday afternoon, the Braves headed home to Orlando to take on the Washington Nationals. With a 1:05 start, the Braves faced the Nationals’ recently acquired pitcher, Patrick Corbin. For the Braves, they sent out starters: Inciarte, Albies, Acuña, Freeman and Flowers. The Nationals countered by sending out five of their current starting lineup headlined by the up-and-coming Juan Soto.
In the 1st inning, the Nationals got things going with a Victor Robles single, a Wilmer Difo walk and a wild pitch by Fried that gave them a 1-0 lead. In the bottom of the 1st, Patrick Corbin looked to be in mid-season form when he caused 3 straight groundouts by Inciarte, Albies and Freeman that got him out of the first in three total pitches.
Fried looked to calm down in the second inning and pounded the strike-zone on his way to earning 3 straight groundouts and finishing his start after 14 total pitches.
Max Fried: 2 IP, 1BB, 1K, 1H, 1R
Jason Creasy entered the game in the third inning and had some difficulty getting batters out. He gave up two singles and a walk that put some pressure on the defense as the Nationals extended their lead to 3-0.
Jason Creasy: 1 IP, 1BB, 2H, 2ER
The Braves couldn’t get anything going in the first three innings as the Nationals pitching continued to catch the Braves looking. In the 4th inning, the Braves called upon Sam Freeman to the mound. After a very disappointing 2018, Freeman looked to start 2019 on a positive note and he did just that. In the top of the 4th Freeman retired the side in 3 total pitches.
Sam Freeman: 1IP, 0H, 0R
For the first time in 2019, the Braves finally showed life as Ozzie Albies earned a leadoff walk and Freddie Freeman came up on the plate for the second time. After working a 3-1 count, the Nationals pitcher, JJ Hoover left a fastball over the top half of the plate and Freddie took it to right center field for a 2 run HR. The scoring didn’t stop there either!… Ronald Acuña followed the bomb with a single to left. The Braves were then able to then force 2 walks and a fielder’s choice that gave them a 3-3 tie after four innings.
In the fifth and sixth innings, youngster Ian Anderson entered the game and shut down the Nats with a walk, a strike-out and no earned runs, giving him a decent outing. More of the same came from Jesse Biddle who struck out 2 gave up one walk and no earned runs on 14 total pitches in his 6th inning outing.
In the bottom of the 6th, the Braves took their first lead of the afternoon following 2 walks (an RBI walk by Ryan LaMarre), a wild pitch, and a 3 RBI double for up-and-comer Cristian Pache that allowed them to extend their lead to 7-3. The Braves refused to give the lead away and closed out the game with 3 double plays in the 7th-9th innings. The Braves get their first spring training win with a final score of 9-4. They now welcome the New York Mets to Orlando tomorrow for a 1:05pm matchup.
Freddie Freeman: 1-2, 1HR (2 run HR), 2RBI’s
Cristian Pache: 1-2, 1(2B), 3RBI’s