First-place Braves look to keep rolling at Washington

National Sports

Ozzie Albies and the Atlanta Braves aim to continue their torrid stretches Saturday night against the host Washington Nationals.

Albies homered in his third consecutive contest on Friday as the Braves moved into a tie for first place in the National League East with the Philadelphia Phillies following a 4-2 victory over the Nationals.

Atlanta’s eighth win in 10 outings wasn’t easy, however. The Braves began their nine-game road trip by enduring a weather delay of more than three hours and overcoming an early two-run deficit in the series opener.

“I feel like we stayed locked in. We were ready to come out here and compete,” Braves shortstop Dansby Swanson told Bally Sports. “The old saying is that we’re here so we might as well win it.

“I’m proud of the guys. We have a lot of work to do on this road trip. Go home, get some rest and come back and do it again (Saturday).”

Swanson’s homer in the ninth inning Friday was his 21st long ball of the year, a single-season franchise best by a shortstop.

Albies, who has four homers and seven RBIs in his past five games, joined Adam Duvall in belting a two-run homer off Patrick Corbin in Atlanta’s 5-4 victory over Washington last Sunday.

Corbin (6-11, 5.83 ERA) is scheduled to face the Braves again Saturday.

Albies (8-for-22) and Duvall (9-for-28) have fared well versus Corbin.

The left-hander has struggled to keep the ball in the park this season. He has allowed a National League-high 27 homers this season for Washington, which has dropped five in a row and 10 of its past 11 games.

Corbin, 32, fell to 0-4 with a bloated 7.22 ERA in his past five outings after permitting five runs on as many hits in six innings during the Sunday loss at Atlanta.

“That’s the way it’s been going for me,” said Corbin, who is struggling with a career-high ERA this season. “I don’t know an answer for it. … I feel good and that’s really all I can say. The results just really haven’t been there.”

Corbin is 0-2 with a 7.15 ERA in two starts versus the Braves this season. He is 6-6 with a 3.06 ERA in 16 career appearances (14 starts) against Atlanta.

Braves left-hander Max Fried (9-7, 3.91 ERA) will look to win his second straight start against Washington on Saturday.

Fried, 27, allowed one run on seven hits in six innings of the Braves’ 5-4 victory over the Nationals on Sunday.

“Mostly it’s just slowing everything down, focusing on my breathing, the only thing I can control is executing this pitch right here and there,” Fried said of his recent success. “Not trying to do too much in one pitch and kind of trusting the defense.”

Fried is 2-1 with a 5.94 ERA in four starts this season versus Washington and 3-3 with a 5.45 ERA in 10 career appearances (nine starts) against the Nationals.

Victor Robles (6-for-16) and Ryan Zimmerman (3-for-10, two doubles) have fared well against Fried.

–Field Level Media

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