Acuna, fellow Braves youngsters romp over Phillies 10-1
PHILADELPHIA -- Tucked in the corner of the Atlanta Braves clubhouse, Ozzie Albies couldn't button the cuff of his shirt. He called over Ronald Acuna Jr., and the two struggled for about a minute before completing the task.
While getting dressed up may still be a bit of a challenge, the two youngest players in the major leagues sure do have this baseball thing down.
The 20-year-old Acuna doubled twice and reached base four times to cap a successful first week in the majors, while the 21-year-old Albies hit the game's first pitch for a homer and added a two-run double in the Braves' 10-1 rout of the Philadelphia Phillies on Sunday.
"Ozzie is obviously doing some ridiculous things right now," said Brandon McCarthy (4-0), who went 5 1/3 innings to win his third game against Philadelphia this season. "And you're seeing early how teams are already pitching to Acuna."
About all Acuna did wrong was wipe out while rounding second in the eighth inning, turning a sure triple into an RBI double. He walked twice, stole his first base and is hitting .421 (8-for-19) since being called up.
It made manager Brian Snitker look like a genius for adjusting his lineup. Albies led off in front of Acuna. Ender Inciarte, dropped from first to ninth, tripled in a five-run third inning off Vince Velasquez (1-4) that include a three-run homer by Johan Camargo in the Braves' fourth win in five games.
"I don't know how long we'll roll with it," Snitker said of his new order. "But we probably will Tuesday. I kind of like it."
McCarthy (4-0) allowed one run and five hits while striking out six. All three of his Phillies victories have come at the expense of Velasquez, who has allowed 16 runs against the Braves.
Aaron Altherr had three hits and scored on Maikel Franco's grounder the fourth in the Phillies' fourth loss in six games. Philadelphia is 3-6 against Atlanta this season.
This was decided early. Albies crushed a 93 mph fastball to right for his ninth homer and Acuna doubled to right two pitches later in the first.
Inciarte tripled to right to lead off the decisive third that included Nick Markakis' two-run single and the 24-year-old Camargo's first homer, both coming with two outs.
"I liked the way we played today," Albies said. "We're just going out there and playing the game and getting Ws. We're having fun on the field."
Braves: RHP Julio Teheran, pulled from Friday's start with back pain, threw a bullpen session and is "on track" to make his next start, Snitker said.
Phillies: Struggling SS J.P. Crawford was placed on the 10-day disabled list with a right forearm strain and INF Jesmuel Valentin was recalled from Triple-A Lehigh Valley. Crawford is hitting .214 and has five throwing errors. "I think the time down could make him feel better overall," manager Gabe Kapler said. Scott Kingery replaced Crawford in the lineup.
Phillies CF Odubel Herrera drew two walks, extending his career-best on-base streak to 29 games.
Braves LHP Jesse Biddle, a Philadelphia native and former Phillies draft pick, pitched doubled in a run off Luis Garcia in the ninth in his first major league plate appearance.
"I closed my eyes," said Biddle, who threw two scoreless innings. "I got very lucky."
Six-time All-Star Jose Bautista, signed by Atlanta to a minor league deal on April 18, went went 2 for 4 with two RBI for Triple-A Gwinnett on Sunday. .
The Braves released OF Peter Bourjos, four days after he was designated for assignment to open a roster spot for Acuna. . The Phillies optioned RHP Jake Thompson to Triple-A after he allowed three runs and three hits in 3 2/3 innings.
Braves: After an off day in New York, LHP Sean Newcomb (1-1, 4.23 ERA) starts Tuesday night against Mets RHP Noah Syndergaard (2-0, 2.86).
Phillies: RHP Jake Arrieta (3-0, 1.82) starts Monday night at Miami. Marlins RHP Dan Straily (right forearm strain) is scheduled to make his season debut. Kapler said RHP Zach Eflin will start Tuesday in place of HP Ben Lively (strained lower back).
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ATL Wins 2-1
- Home Plate Umpire - Scott Barry
- First Base Umpire - Ramon DeJesus
- Second Base Umpire - Paul Nauert
- Third Base Umpire - Kerwin Danley
2023 National League East Standings