Anderson, Braves push Marlins to brink of elimination

Anderson, Braves push Marlins to brink of elimination

Rookie right-hander Ian Anderson tossed 5 2/3 strong innings and Dansby Swanson and Travis d’Arnaud homered in their second straight contest to lift the Atlanta Braves to a 2-0 win over the Miami Marlins on Wednesday in Houston.

The victory gave the Braves a 2-0 lead in the best-of-five National League Division Series.

Game 3 is scheduled for Thursday afternoon, with Atlanta’s Kyle Wright looking for the clincher against Miami’s Sixto Sanchez.

Darren O’Day, Tyler Matzek, Will Smith and closer Mark Melancon did not allow a hit over the final 3 1/3 innings to shut the door on the sixth-seeded Marlins.

Anderson (2-0), who started a 5-0 shutout win over Cincinnati last week, was brilliant once again. He allowed a double by Brian Anderson and two singles while striking out eight.

The 22-year-old Anderson did most of his pitching with a lead after Swanson ended a run of five straight batters retired by Marlins starter Pablo Lopez (0-1) with a 403-foot shot to center field. Swanson’s blast gave Atlanta a 1-0 lead in the second inning.

Atlanta, the NL’s second seed, doubled its advantage on d’Arnaud’s solo homer in the fourth.

Swanson and d’Arnaud were among three Braves who homered in Tuesday’s 9-5 win in Game 1.

Lopez was pulled after five innings, having allowed just the two runs on three hits. He struck out seven and did not walk a batter.

Brian Anderson’s double came with one out in the top of the fourth with Miami down just 1-0. He did not advance past second, however, as Ian Anderson induced Garrett Cooper and Matt Joyce to fly out.

The Braves’ budding star was replaced with two outs and a runner at first in the sixth inning, having thrown 94 pitches.

O’Day came on and loaded the bases by hitting Brian Anderson and walking Cooper, before getting Joyce to ground out.

Miami’s only baserunner in the final three innings was the product of an error by Swanson at shortstop in the eighth as the Braves wrapped up their fourth consecutive postseason victory.

Marlins relievers Richard Bleier, Brad Boxberger and Brandon Kintzler kept Miami within striking distance with three innings of one-hit, shutout relief.

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