Olson hits 2 home runs and Ozuna one; Braves defeat Nationals

Matt Olson had two of Atlanta’s four homers and Spencer Strider struck out nine over six scoreless innings as the Braves beat the Washington Nationals 7-1 on Saturday.

Ronald Acuna Jr. and Olson started the game with solo homers in back-to-back at-bats. Marcell Ozuna added a home run later for Atlanta.

All those four-cornered drives came against Josiah Gray, who allowed the most home runs by a pitcher this season.

Olson’s second blow of the day came in the seventh inning off Thaddeus Ward, a reliever making his major league debut.

Olson had 34 homers and 103 RBIs in 2022 for NL East champion Atlanta.

Strider (1-0) consistently hit 99 mph on his pitches. Washington connected only three hits.

In short, Strider looked as good as the pitcher who was runner-up in last Year’s Rookie voting, trailing only teammate Michael Harris II. Last season, he racked up 202 strikeouts in just 131 2/3 innings.

Gray (0-1) gave up five runs in as many innings.

For the Braves, Venezuelans Acuña 5-1 with a run scored and an RBI, Orlando Arcia 4-3 with two runs scored. Puerto Rican Eddie Rosario 4-0. The Dominican Ozuna 4-1 with a run scored and an RBI.

For the Nationals, the Mexican Joey Meneses 4-0. The Venezuelans Keibert Ruiz 4-2 with one scored and one produced, Ildemaro Vargas 1-0. The Dominicans Jeimer Candelario 4-0, Victor Robles 2-1.

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