5 takeaways from Braves’ series-clinching rout of Giants

1. After a nine-wins-in-nine-games road trip against three struggling teams, the Braves had a two-wins-in-five-games homestand against two elite teams. And after the way the homestand started, back-to-back losses to the New York Yankees, the Braves were elated with how it ended, two wins in three games against the San Francisco Giants.

The Braves’ 9-0 win Sunday, following a 6-5 come-from-behind win Friday and a 5-0 loss Saturday, sent them back on the road to Los Angeles and Colorado with their 4-1/2 game lead intact over the second-place Philadelphia Phillies in the National League East.

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“The way we bounced back here against the best team in baseball, best record, was awesome,” pitcher Ian Anderson said of the Giants series. “To fight and come back and win that first game (Friday), and then today it felt like were in control kind of from the get-go. We’re definitely in a good place as a team. Heading out west, we’re feeling good.”

“I’m very happy with the way this weekend went,” manager Brian Snitker said.

2. The most significant development in Sunday’s game was Anderson’s performance in his return to the starting rotation. Pitching in a major-league game for the first time since July 11, he worked 5-2/3 scoreless innings, allowing four hits and reporting no problems with the right shoulder that had landed him on the injured list immediately after the All-Star break.

“It felt great,” Anderson said. “It felt normal, being out there and pitching in front of the fans and kind of getting that adrenaline rush back. The rehab process went really well, so I’m just looking forward to contributing down the stretch here.”

One unusual thing about his performance Sunday: He had no strikeouts. It was the first time in Anderson’s brief major-league career that he failed to get a strikeout in an outing. It also was the first time since 2017 that any major-leaguer pitched at least 5-2/3 scoreless innings without a strikeout.

“It was definitely a weird game in that aspect,” Anderson said. “But it was hot, and I kept the defense in it and kept our guys in the dugout, so that definitely helped.”

3. The Braves’ offense was powered by three home runs. Long, loud blasts by Jorge Soler and Austin Riley provided a 3-0 lead in the fourth inning, and an eighth-inning solo shot by Ozzie Albies completed the scoring.

The Braves are third in the majors in home runs with 187.

4. Outfielder Eddie Rosario, acquired at the July 30 trade deadline and activated from the injured list Friday, made his first start for the Braves. He played left field as Adam Duvall rested. Rosario went 2-for-4 with a two-run triple, continuing the productivity of Braves newcomers.

With a rebuilt outfield that includes Duvall, Soler and Joc Pederson, it remains unclear how playing time will be allocated with Rosario’s addition to the active roster. But it’s worth remembering he had 32 home runs and 109 RBIs for Minnesota in 2019.

“I want to try to help the team to win,” Rosario said. “Everything I can do, I’ll be there ready to go.”

Braves 9, Giants 0 (box score)

5. After winning a series from the 84-46 Giants, the Braves next face the team with the NL’s second-best record, the 82-49 Dodgers. A three-game series opens Monday at Dodger Stadium.

“It’s not going to get any easier, that’s for sure,” Snitker said. “It’s going to be tough.”

Quotable

“I thought (Ian Anderson) did great. You come out of rehab against a team like this and shut them down, it’s awesome ... I really liked where he was today.” - Braves manager Brian Snitker

By the numbers

13: Consecutive road wins by the Braves entering Monday’s game at Dodger Stadium

Next game

Braves left-hander Drew Smyly (9-3, 4.54 ERA) and Dodgers lefty Julio Urias (14-3, 3.17) are scheduled to start Monday. Smyly last pitched on Aug. 21.

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