ATLANTA (AP) — Ronald Acuña Jr. hit two of Atlanta’s five home runs, Matt Olson increased his major league-leading total to 47 and the Braves beat slumping Adam Wainwright and the St. Louis Cardinals 8-5 on Thursday night.
Acuña raised his season total to 34 homers with his third multihomer game this season and the 12th of his big league career. Olson homered for his fourth straight game, and Michael Harris II and Travis d’Arnaud also went deep for major league-best Atlanta (91-48), which leads second-place Philadelphia by 14 games in the NL East.
Max Fried (7-1) allowed three runs and six hits in six innings, improving to 5-0 in his last seven starts. He is 5-0 in his career against the Cardinals.
Wainwright (3-11), pitching in his home state of Georgia for the final time against the team that drafted him in 2000, allowed six runs and eight hits in 5 2/3 innings, including four solo home runs. He is stuck at 198 wins, losing seven straight starts and dropping to 0-10 in 11 outings since winning at the New York Mets on June 17.
Pierce Johnson and A.J. Minter each pitched a scoreless inning each, and Raisel Iglesias gave up two runs in the ninth out of the bullpen. Eddie Rosario was 3 for 4 with three RBIs and made a sliding catch in left that ended he game with two runners on.
Tommy Edman was 2 for 4 with two RBIs for the Cardinals (61-79), who with three more losses would assure their first losing season since 2007.
Olson broke a 3-3 tie in the fifth inning with a solo homer to center after Edman had made catches against the wall for the inning’s first two outs. Acuña and Harris homered in the sixth, chasing Wainwright.
Acuña Jr. homered on the game’s first pitch, his sixth leadoff homer this season, and Rosario’s two-run single later in the inning opened a 3-0 lead.
Andrew Knizner was hit by a pitch with the bases loaded in the second and Edman hit a two-run single. Nolan Gorman was initially ruled out by plate umpire Laz Díaz, but the call was reversed in a video review.
Cardinals: Rookie LHP Drew Rom (0-2, 7.24) will face Cincinnati LHP Andrew Abbott (8-4, 3.22) on Friday in the opener of a three-game series in Cincinnati.
Braves: RHP Bryce Elder (11-4, 3.42) starts against Pittburgh RHP Mitch Keller (11-8, 3.93) in the first game of a three-game series in Atlanta.