Braves, Brewers wait to name starters for Game 4

October 11, 2021 Atlanta - Atlanta Braves players celebrate their victory during the 9th inning in Game 3 of National League Divisional Series at Truist Park on Monday, October 11. Atlanta Braves won 3-0 over Milwaukee Brewers. (Hyosub Shin / Hyosub.Shin@ajc.com)

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October 11, 2021 Atlanta - Atlanta Braves players celebrate their victory during the 9th inning in Game 3 of National League Divisional Series at Truist Park on Monday, October 11. Atlanta Braves won 3-0 over Milwaukee Brewers. (Hyosub Shin / Hyosub.Shin@ajc.com)

The Braves nor Brewers announced their Game 4 starter immediately following Game 3, which the Braves won 3-0 at Truist Park on Monday to take a 2-1 lead in the best-of-five National League Division Series.

Braves manager Brian Snitker said “everybody is on the table” to start. The Braves would advance to their second consecutive NL Championship Series with a win in Game 4. If they lose, they’ll return to Milwaukee for a winner-take-all Game 5 on Thursday.

Veteran starter Charlie Morton is an option to start on short rest Tuesday (when asked about Morton, who’s only once pitched on short rest and it was in relief, Snitker reiterated that everyone is an option). The team could also pitch a bullpen game, using pitchers who can cover multiple innings such as Huascar Ynoa and Drew Smyly.

Morton allowed two runs over six innings in Game 1, pitching into the seventh inning. He exited after surrendering a two-run homer to Rowdy Tellez, which produced the only runs Milwaukee has scored in three games.

Morton, Max Fried and Ian Anderson have struck out 24 while walking one over 17 innings. If Morton pitched in Game 4, Fried, who’s been perhaps baseball’s best pitcher since mid-July, would start Game 5.

“It’s incredible,” outfielder Joc Pederson said of the Braves’ starting pitching. “It’s really fun to watch. They’ve been extremely dominant. It’s crazy. The only one to give up runs is Charlie. And I honestly think he was the most dominant one. That’s how crazy of a game it is that we play. That’s nothing against Ian or Max’s outings, but they’ve been lights out.

“A really good hitting team on the other side, a lot of good offensive players, and they’re able to keep them off balance, keep them off the bases and limit the innings that our bullpen has to pitch. So it’s keeping those guys fresh in the bullpen, which is huge.”

Brewers manager Craig Counsell likewise didn’t announce a starter for their win-or-go-home Game 4. His team will discuss that Monday evening. Counsell did rule out ace Corbin Burnes. Lefty Eric Lauer (7-5, 3.19) is one logical starting option. Burnes would be the likely starter for Game 5 if the Brewers extend the series.

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