1. Max Fried struck out Brandon Nimmo in the final at-bat before the rain delay and walked off the field, and soon into the clubhouse, after shutting out the Mets over five innings.
The big picture is even prettier: In 16 2/3 innings since coming off the injured list, Fried hasn’t allowed a run.
“Being very honest with myself, knowing that I probably wasn’t going to be the sharpest, but if I threw the ball over the plate and gave (the team) a chance, and let our defense kind of do their thing, that hopefully things would go my way,” Fried said of how he’s achieved this success. “A lot of the times, you notice that walks really hurt you. So if you try to limit the walks and (not) give the free passes -- it’s really hard to string three, four hits in an inning. Just trying to stay on the attack and not be too hard on myself knowing that I wasn’t going to be as sharp as I probably would like to be.”
In the series opener versus New York, Fried struck out seven Mets and walked one. He allowed only three hits. He was in control the entire time.
Fried continues to dominate.
“I don’t think anybody’s really shocked, (with) the caliber of pitcher he is,” Matt Olson said. “I’ve said it before: It’s not like he goes out there and relies on one thing every night. If his fastball isn’t great, he works the off-speed. If his curveball isn’t there, he goes changeup. He’s got everything. It’s fun to watch and easy to play behind him.”
The good news for the Braves (and bad news for the Mets): Spencer Strider pitches on Saturday.
2. The Mets’ outfielders didn’t even move. They simply looked back as the ball flew through the New York night.
Matt Olson barreled up a baseball and put it onto the Shea Bridge in right-center field. The three-run blast, a moonshot, went an estimated 461 feet and became the second-longest homer of Olson’s career.
“It feels good to barrel it like that, in a moment where it helped us tack a few more on,” Olson said.
The blast off left-hander David Peterson in the top of the fifth inning gave the Braves a four-run lead. After the bottom half, the umpires stopped the game because of the rain.
3. Olson’s home run was encouraging for another reason: To this point in the season, he has struggled versus lefties. And he has been in a small funk recently.
Entering Friday, the left-handed hitting Olson had hit .194 with a .603 OPS over 36 at-bats versus left-handed pitching, compared to batting .281 with a 1.082 OPS against righties. Plus, all seven of his home runs – before Friday’s bomb – came against right-handers.
And over his last 10 games before this one, he was 5-for-36 with 16 strikeouts. Braves manager Brian Snitker compared Olson’s resiliency to that of his other key players.
“They all go through it, but they allow themselves a chance to get out of it,” Snitker said. “They hang with themselves, which is the best thing they can do. And they never stop working, and they don’t down on themselves, they know what’s in there and they just keep hanging through things, and something like that happens.”
On Friday, Peterson hung an 85-mph slider and Olson made him pay. Over his career, Olson is 3-for-11 versus Peterson – and all three hits are homers. Olson has driven in eight runs off Peterson.
And this time, Olson hit one with the rain intensifying.
“It was getting pretty bad there,” Olson said.
With his big homer, Olson eclipsed the 500-RBI mark.
4. Looking back, the night unfolded perfectly for the Braves. They are in a stretch of 17 consecutive games before their next off day.
As it turned out, Fried’s performance, and the rain, helped the Braves rest their entire bullpen for a day.
5. In 22 games versus the Mets – 17 of them starts – Fried has a 2.65 ERA over 102 innings pitched.
“This is a really good ballclub,” Fried said of New York. “They put together really good at-bats and they fight. It’s always a really good atmosphere when you come out here. You’re in New York and the fans are really into it and they’re very passionate. You get a little boost of adrenaline and you know you gotta kind of bring it.”
Stat to know
3 - The Braves have three shutout victories this season.
“He’s so detailed and is so on top of his work. He knows exactly how he wants to attack guys. I don’t think the opponent matters much for him. I think he’s on his A-game every time mentally.” - Olson on Fried
Strider and the Braves will face right-hander Tylor Megill in Saturday’s game, which begins at 4:05 p.m. and will air on FOX.