Duvall delivers walk-off single in 10th as Braves overcome strong start by Skenes, beat Pirates 2-1

ATLANTA (AP) — Adam Duvall’s single in the 10th inning drove in Luke Williams from second base and the Atlanta Braves overcame a strong start by Pittsburgh rookie Paul Skenes to beat the Pirates 2-1 on Saturday.

Duvall lined the single off Kyle Nicholas (0-2) to the wall in center field, bringing home Williams, who started the inning on second. Braves players charged out of the dugout to celebrate with Duvall, who began the day hitting only .165.

“We grind with each other,” Duvall sad. “They know it hasn’t been going great for me. For them to show that kind of love for me at the end means a lot. I’m over the moon right now.”

Edward Olivares was tagged out at the plate when trying to score from third base on a wild pitch by Daysbel Hernández (2-0) in the top of the 10th. Olivares was initially ruled safe but the Braves challenged and a review showed Hernández caught the throw from Travis d’Arnaud and tagged Olivares before he reached the plate.

Skenes allowed one run on six hits in six innings and was typically dominant after giving up Jarred Kelenic’s homer to open the game. Skenes struck out the side in the sixth, giving him nine for the game. He wasn’t satisfied with his performance.

“Execution just wasn’t there,” Skenes said. “I had to grind through it. … Just gotta keep battling. Gotta execute. Yeah, just execute from the first pitch.”

Braves manager Brian Snitker said Skenes and Braves left-hander Max Fried pitched through struggles.

“I’m nothing but impressed with the Skenes kid,” Snitker said. “He doesn’t look like a first-year guy to me. He’s got a lot of confidence.”

Bryan Reynolds extended his hitting streak to 25 games when he tripled off the right-field wall with two outs in the ninth. It is the longest streak in the majors this season and the Pirates’ longest since Kenny Lofton’s 26-game streak in 2003.

Raisel Iglesias ended the ninth on Olivares’ grounder to the mound.

With two outs in the sixth and Ke’Bryan Hayes on second base following a single and stolen base, Duvall made a running catch at the wall in right field of Taylor’s drive to end the inning.

The Pirates had runners on second and third with two outs in the eighth when Kelenic made a running catch of Yasmani Grandal’s drive at the wall in center field.

Fried allowed one run in six innings.

Pittsburgh’s Aroldis Chapman recorded two strikeouts in the ninth to pass Billy Wagner for the most career strikeouts by a left-handed reliever. Chapman, 36, struck out d’Arnaud and pinch-hitter Sean Murphy, passing Wagner’s mark of 1,196 strikeouts.


Pirates: Oneil Cruz, hitting .167 for the last two weeks and .236 for the season, did not start with the left-handed Fried on the mound. Cruz has hit only .114 against left-handers. Jared Triolo made the fill-in start. Cruz struck out as a pinch hitter against right-hander Pierce Johnson in the seventh, with strike three called on a batter’s infraction.

Braves: RHP Ian Anderson will start for Class-A Augusta on Sunday as he continues his comeback from Tommy John surgery. … OF Ramón Laureano may be held out until Tuesday as he recovers from lower back soreness. He did not start for the third straight game.


Braves RHP Spencer Schwellenbach (1-3, 5.40) will make his first start against Pittsburgh when the rookie faces LHP Bailey Falter (3-6, 4.00) in Sunday’s game, scheduled for an unusual 11:35 a.m. first pitch for Roku TV. Falter’s last win came against Atlanta on May 24.


AP MLB: https://apnews.com/hub/mlb

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