Arizona Diamondbacks outlast Atlanta Braves for 6th straight win

Merrill Kelly delivers strong outing


NEVN Photography

Another win for Arizona at home against Atlanta on Friday night

Preston Grace, Reporter

The Arizona Diamondbacks were riding a five-game win streak after sweeping the Colorado Rockies.

They increased that streak to six, Friday night, with a win over the Atlanta Braves at Chase Field, and are starting to shape into one of the premier teams in the League.

The D-backs got off to a hot start against Braves pitcher Charlie Morton.

After Geraldo Perdomo and Corbin Carroll ,both hit singles, Lourdes Gurriel Jr. brought them both home with a 2-RBI, first-inning double, giving the D-backs an early 2-0 lead.

Christian Walker drove in what would be the final Arizona run in the third inning, with an RBI double, scoring the speedy Carroll from first, his second run of the game.

After that, Arizona’s offense went quiet.

No hits and only two baserunners after the fourth inning.

Eddie Roasrio was the only Braves hitter that was able to get to Merrill Kelly. He hit home runs, Nos. seven and eight on the season, both of them solo home-runs. Those were the only two Atlanta runs of the game.

Aside from the two home runs, Merrill Kelly was excellent.

He threw 7.0 innings, only allowing five hits, and racking up eight strikeouts against three walks.

Austin Adams relieved Kelly in the eighth inning and was able to get the Braves’ top three hitters out by striking out Ronald Acuna Jr and Matt Olson, and getting Austin Riley to fly out the right field.

Miguel Castro had to work for it, but he earned his sixth save of the season, backed by a great catch at the warning track by Gurriel Jr.

The raucous crowd of 27,469 helped energize the team, according to Diamondbacks Manager Torey Lovullo.

“We felt our fans’ vibe today. Our fans came out and represented a little bit more than we are used to, and we felt that energy,” said Lovullo in the post-game press conference. “I felt like we gave the crowd a lot of good things today, and I want them to come back out and keep supporting us.”

The Atlanta Braves are 33-24 after the loss, and still have the second-best record in the National League. With some of the best players in baseball on their roster, the D-backs wanted to make a statement against another good team.

“I think there’s a little extra zoom in everybody’s behind today,” Lovullo said. “Knowing the Braves were here, they’re a good baseball team. They might have four or five of the best players, position by position on their team. I think we knew what was going on today, and our guys stood tall, and I’m proud of that. They don’t backdown from anybody.”

After tonight’s win, Arizona holds a 35-23 record, tied with the L.A. Dodgers for first place in the NL West.

“We’re doing alright, and I think everybody in the community is paying attention to that,” Lovullo told reporters. “We got a long way to go, but I want to reiterate that we are doing it at a very high-level, and good things are happening from the hard work we’re putting in every day, and we have to continue to do so.”

The Diamondbacks will go for another series win on Saturday night.  Ryne Nelson is scheduled to pitch game two of three against Atlanta at Chase Field in Phoenix at 7:10 p.m.