MLB today — In a classic match-up of division leaders, the Atlanta Braves, leading the National League East, will be welcoming the Minnesota Twins, top contenders in the American League Central. This opening match of a three-game series on Monday will see a pitching duel between two right-handed maestros: Spencer Strider of the Braves, and Sonny Gray from the Twins.
The Braves, riding high on a 4-1 away win streak and victorious in 10 of their last 11 games, will be full of confidence after winning their final two games against Cincinnati, the NL Central leaders. Conversely, the Twins will bring their momentum from a 2-1 win over the host Detroit Tigers during the weekend, which included a thrilling 6-3 victory in the 10th inning on Sunday.
These two teams have not faced off since 2019, a series that saw the Braves emerging victorious in Minneapolis.
On the Mound: Strider vs Gray
The Braves’ Spencer Strider, currently leading the major leagues with 136 strikeouts, will be hoping to continue his impressive form. After a shaky phase where he allowed 13 runs over nine innings across two starts, he returned with a formidable performance against Philadelphia, restricting them to a single run over six innings.
Minnesota Twins’ Sonny Gray, despite not being the decisive factor in his latest outing against Boston Red Sox, showed commendable form, permitting three runs on six hits over five innings. His career record against the Braves includes five starts with a 0-2 record and a respectable 3.23 ERA.
Team Highlights: Power Hitting on Display
Both the Braves and the Twins have demonstrated a notable prowess in power hitting recently. Braves’ first baseman Matt Olson has been a force to reckon with, hitting his 25th home run in his last outing and accumulating seven home runs in his past nine games. This puts him tied with Shohei Ohtani as the leader in the majors.
Minnesota’s third baseman, Royce Lewis, has also been in sensational form, boasting a seven-game hitting streak, with an impressive batting average of .462 over that period.
Gore Triumphs as Nationals Best Padres
In another engaging match-up, MacKenzie Gore led the Washington Nationals to an 8-3 victory over the Padres, thereby concluding a three-game series on a high note. Contributing to the Nationals’ cause, Jeimer Candelario and Joey Meneses each drove in three runs.
Key Moments: Nationals Capitalize on Padres’ Errors
Washington capitalized on two throwing errors by Padres’ reliever Tim Hill, converting them into five unearned runs in the top of the seventh. Candelario and Meneses each delivered a two-run double, tipping the scales in favor of the Nationals.
Gore put an end to his personal losing streak, delivering a performance worthy of praise. His five-inning play saw him give up just one run on five hits, alongside two walks and nine strikeouts.
In a memorable start to the game, the Nationals secured a 1-0 lead in the first inning with Candelario’s 10th homer of the season. The Padres managed to level the score in the fifth on Fernando Tatis Jr.’s two-out RBI single, but the Nationals retaliated, pulling ahead in the top of the sixth and cementing their lead.
Despite a late rally from the Padres, marked by Ha-Seong Kim’s seventh-inning homer and a final run in the ninth, the Nationals held on for a resounding victory.
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