The Atlanta Braves will look for their second straight win in a National League East series when they battle the host Philadelphia Phillies on Wednesday.
In a 5-3 victory Tuesday, Atlanta’s Matt Olson crushed a pair of solo home runs while Travis d’Arnaud added a home run, a single and two RBIs.
Olson has five home runs in four career games at Citizens Bank Park.
“I’ve seen it well here in the park and the ball goes pretty good, so I’ll try to keep it going,” Olson told Bally Sports South. “I’m starting to feel good, putting the barrel on some more balls.”
It was another impressive win for the short-handed Braves, who were without closer Kenley Jansen and Ronald Acuna Jr.
The Braves, who are 20-5 this month, placed Jansen on the 15-day injured list Tuesday with an irregular heartbeat and recalled right-hander Jesus Cruz. Jansen, who has 20 saves this season, ranks No. 10 all-time with 370 career saves.
“We’ve been trying to take care of him and give him days and not overwork him too much,” Braves manager Brian Snitker said of the 34-year-old veteran who had heart surgery in 2018. “It’s hard when you get on a run. A guy like that, he’s a Hall of Famer. He wants to pitch.”
Atlanta left-hander A.J. Minter tossed a scoreless ninth inning Tuesday for his first save in three opportunities.
Acuna, meanwhile, is not with the team in Philadelphia as he continues to recuperate from a bruised left foot. It’s unclear whether he will play Wednesday or Thursday against the Phillies.
Kyle Wright (8-4, 3.18 ERA) is scheduled to start on Wednesday for the Braves. Wright is 0-3 with a 5.00 ERA in four career games against the Phillies.
After winning three of four on the road against the San Diego Padres, the Phillies will now look to rebound from the series-opening loss to the Braves.
Despite the setback, the Phillies still hold an impressive 18-7 record in June.
Kyle Schwarber continues to lead the offense in the absence of Bryce Harper. The left fielder reached base for the 31st straight game on Tuesday, and he hit his 11th homer of the month.
“It’s baseball and it happens,” Schwarber said of the loss. “Our guys have been pretty locked down the last couple of weeks.”
Earlier on Tuesday, interim Phillies manager Rob Thomson announced that Harper — the reigning National League MVP — will have surgery on Wednesday to repair a broken left thumb.
Harper was hitting .318 with 15 home runs and 48 RBIs through 64 games.
“If he’s able to come back, which we plan on, then that’s good news,” Thomson said of Harper possibly returning by mid-August.
In the meantime, the Phillies must attempt to accumulate wins without Harper for a minimum of six weeks.
They went just 1-for-10 with runners in scoring position on Tuesday and left seven runners on base. Nick Castellanos, a prized free agent acquisition in the offseason, finished 0-for-4 and had his average drop to .248.
“I feel like you miss Bryce every night,” Thomson said. “We’ve got to get it done.”
The Phillies will hand the ball to Ranger Suarez (6-4, 4.23 ERA) as they look to even the series. The left-hander is 1-1 with a 4.91 ERA in 11 career games (two starts) against the Braves.
–Field Level Media