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NLDS: Atlanta Braves blank St. Louis Cardinals to even series

By
Connor Grott
Atlanta Braves starting pitcher Mike Foltynewicz allowed only three hits across seven scoreless innings against the St. Louis Cardinals on Friday. File Photo by Bill Greenblatt/UPI
Atlanta Braves starting pitcher Mike Foltynewicz allowed only three hits across seven scoreless innings against the St. Louis Cardinals on Friday. File Photo by Bill Greenblatt/UPI | License Photo

Oct. 4 (UPI) -- Atlanta starting pitcher Mike Foltynewicz outdueled St. Louis Cardinals ace Jack Flaherty and Adam Duvall belted a two-run homer as the Braves earned a 3-0 victory over the St. Louis Cardinals on Friday to even the National League Division Series at one game apiece.

Foltynewicz, who spent a portion of the season in Triple-A due to a slow start to the season, threw seven shutout innings and allowed only three hits. He struck out seven and walked none.

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Foltynewicz joined Hall of Famers Greg Maddux and Tom Glavine as the only Braves pitchers since 1958 to pitch at least seven innings in a playoff game without conceding a run or walk.

"It's pretty cool to see for a guy that went through what he's went through this year and where he's come back from and the rough start that he had," Braves manager Brian Snitker told reporters. "And to see him step up like that is something really special."

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"These games are pretty big, but at the same time, it's just the same game we've been playing all year," Foltynewicz said. "I said that the other day, and that's kind of how I took it tonight. But I really made sure to slow things down, to stay in my mechanics and make sure all my pitches were working like they were tonight. And it was smooth sailing, so it was a lot of fun."

The Braves jumped in front after Ozzie Albies scored on an RBI single by Josh Donaldson in the first inning.

Duvall, who also spent a majority of the season at the Triple-A level, blasted a two-run home run off Flaherty to give the Braves a 3-0 advantage in the bottom of the seventh.

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The Cardinals attempted to mount a rally in the ninth after Braves closer Mark Melancon, who allowed four runs in the final inning of Game 1, surrendered two one-out singles. The reliever settled down and struck out Yadier Molina and Kolten Wong to earn the second postseason save of his career.

The best-of-five series shifts to St. Louis, where Mike Soroka will take the mound for the Braves in Game 3 on Sunday against Adam Wainwright.

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