Ronald Acura Jr. broke out of his mini-slump with a tape-measure home run and Ian Anderson threw seven scoreless innings to help the Atlanta Braves defeat the visiting Chicago Cubs 5-0 on Tuesday.
Acuna crushed a 481-foot home run off Chicago starter Trevor Williams, the second-longest recorded in the major leagues this season, behind only the 485-foot blast by Yermin Mercedes of the Chicago White Sox.
It was Acuna’s eighth home run and first since he strained a muscle in his side that caused him to miss two games. He had been hitless in 12 straight at-bats since returning from his injury,
Anderson (2-0) allowed only one hit and one walk with eight strikeouts. It was Anderson’s second consecutive scoreless start. It was the third career start of six-plus innings that Anderson has allowed only one hit.
A.J. Minter pitched a scoreless eighth inning and Brandon Webb worked around an error to record a scoreless ninth, striking out the side. It was the 61st straight game the Braves have won when leading after eight innings, the longest active streak in the major leagues.
The losing pitcher was Williams (2-2), who pitched five innings and allowed two runs on six hits, two walks and eight strikeouts.
After Acuna opened the fifth inning with the solo homer, the Braves pushed across another run when Freddie Freeman walked and scored on a two-out double to center field by Ozzie Albies.
The Braves put the game away when they batted around and scored three times in the eighth inning against reliever Brandon Workman. Albies doubled and scored on an opposite-field single by Dansby Swanson — one of his three hits. Swanson later scored on Pablo Sandoval’s pinch-hit single. Freeman got the other run home on a bases-loaded walk.
Atlanta has won four of five games against the Cubs this season.