Second baseman Ozzie Albies homered for the fourth straight game and drove in four runs to lift the Atlanta Braves to an 8-5 win over the visiting Washington Nationals on Tuesday night.
Albies was 2-for-3 with a walk and scored two runs. His two-run homer in the seventh inning, his 27th, broke a 5-5 tie.
Albies, a switch-hitter, batted right-handed against Washington right-hander Ryne Harper (0-2) and hit a 3-1 curveball into the seats in left-center field to give the Braves a 7-5 lead.
He added an RBI single in the eighth, his 93rd RBI of the season.
The winning pitcher was Luke Jackson (2-2), who pitched 1 1/3 scoreless innings and struck out three of the four batters he faced. Will Smith worked a scoreless ninth to earn his 31st save.
Atlanta (73-64) expanded its lead in the National League East to 2 1/2 games over second-place Philadelphia. Washington (57-81) is 4-13 against the Braves this season.
Neither starting pitcher was involved in the decision.
Atlanta’s Max Fried pitched six innings and allowed one run on six hits, four walks and struck out five. Fried also picked off his sixth batter of the year.
Washington’s Paolo Espino pitched five innings and allowed five runs on seven hits, two walks and struck out seven.
The Nationals scored a run in the first when Carter Kieboom singled home Alcides Escobar.
But the Braves answered in the bottom of the inning when Adam Duvall hit his 32nd home run, a three-run shot to left field. It was his 10th home run since joining the Braves at the trade deadline and extended his league-leading RBI total to 97.
Atlanta scored a run in the third when Travis d’Arnaud doubled home Freddie Freeman. Washington center fielder Lane Thomas recovered to throw out Duvall at the plate to end the inning.
The Braves made it 5-1 on Albies’ sacrifice fly in the fourth.
Washington rallied for four runs in the seventh against reliever Tyler Matzek. Juan Soto drove in a run with single and Yadiel Hernandez delivered, his eighth homer, a three-run opposite field shot that tied the game 5-5.
–Field Level Media