Freddie Freeman on Tuesday crushed the winning home run as the Atlanta Braves defeated the Milwaukee Brewers 5-4 to book their place in MLB’s National League Championship Series.
After a roller-coaster battle at Truist Park in Atlanta, Georgia, veteran first baseman Freeman slammed a two-out homer into center field in the bottom of the eighth inning off Brewers closer Josh Hader.
Braves reliever Will Smith then had Kolten Wong caught by catcher Travis D’Arnaud after a bunt pop out to start the ninth before striking out Willy Adames with a 132kph slider.
Photo: Brett Davis-USA Today
Smith then dismissed Brewers star Christian Yelich with three strikes to spark wild celebrations and send the Braves back to the championship series for a second straight year.
“I just tried to get a good swing on it,” Freeman said of his winning blast against Hader, one of the best closers in baseball, who had not conceded a home run since July 28.
“There’s no rhyme or reason to it,” Freeman said. “I was feeling good all game, worked on some stuff before the game and it worked out.”
The Braves are to face either the San Francisco Giants or the Los Angeles Dodgers for a place in the MLB World Series.
The Dodgers on Tuesday forced a decisive Game 5 in San Francisco on Thursday after Mookie Betts and Will Smith homered to set up a series-leveling 7-2 victory at Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles.
The Dodgers had been scoreless in a 1-0 defeat in Game 3 on Monday, but came alive in Game 4.
Trea Turner and Chris Taylor got early hits to put the Dodgers 2-0 ahead before Betts drilled a two-run shot off Jarlin Garcia in the bottom of the fourth for a 4-0 lead.
The Giants pulled one back when Darin Ruf ground out to score Evan Longoria in the top of the fifth, but Betts’ sacrifice fly allowed Bellinger to come home in the fifth inning to make it 5-1.
After the Giants closed to 5-2 in the eighth, Dodgers catcher Smith made the game safe with deep fly ball to center field to seal victory.
Dodgers ace Walker Buehler, coming off short rest, bottled up the Giants offense early on, striking out four in 4.1 innings.
“I felt great, probably the best the second half of the year,” Buehler said. “We’ll see how I feel tomorrow, but tonight I felt pretty good.”
Elsewhere, Jose Altuve blasted a three-run home run as the Houston Astros routed the Chicago White Sox 10-1 to reach the American League Championship Series for a fifth straight season.
The Game 4 win sealed a 3-1 series victory and sends the Astros into a best-of-seven series against the Boston Red Sox, with Game 1 set for tomorrow.
Boston Celtics center Enes Kanter on Friday posted a new video denouncing China’s human rights record regarding Uighurs and other Muslim minorities. The video came two days after Kanter, who has a history of speaking out against Recep Tayyip Erdogan, president of his native Turkey, condemned the Chinese Communist Party’s treatment of Tibet in a similar video, prompting a backlash in China. “Heartless Dictator of China, XI JINPING and the Communist Party of China. I am calling you out in front of the whole world. Close down the SLAVE labor camps and free the UYGHUR people!” Kanter wrote on Twitter. “Stop the
A driver lost control during a Texas drag racing event on an airport runway on Saturday, slamming into a crowd of spectators, killing two children and injuring eight other people, authorities said. A six-year-old boy and an eight-year-old boy were killed in the crash at the Airport Race Wars Two event at the Kerrville-Kerr County Airport, police said in a news release. The organized event was attended by thousands and involved drivers speeding down a runway as they competed for cash. The driver “lost control and left the runway, crashing into parked vehicles and striking spectators who were observing the races,” Kerville police
BUILDING MOMENTUM: Forward Lai Li-chin, who is a veteran of the national team that qualified in 2008, scored her third goal of the week against Bahrain in the second half Taiwan on Sunday punched their ticket for the AFC Women’s Asian Cup with a 2-0 victory over Bahrain in the final match of the qualifiers at Khalifa Sports City Stadium in Manama, making a return to the continental showpiece for the first time in 14 years. The triumph in the curtain-raiser booked Taiwan’s slot in the tournament for the first time since 2008, as they prepare to join 10 other nations, as well as hosts India, in matches in Navi Mumbai and Pune from Jan. 20 to Feb. 6 next year. Sunday’s match started with Taiwan working hard to wear down Bahrain’s
Jubilant cricket fans on Sunday poured onto the streets across Pakistan to hail their team’s rout of archrivals India at the T20 World Cup in Dubai. Pakistan romped to a 10-wicket triumph, a first ever at the World Cup level over their South Asian neighbors. Fans danced and sang, shouting slogans of “Pakistan zindabad,” or “Long Live Pakistan.” Celebratory gunfire erupted from the rooftops of houses in the capital, Islamabad, as well as Peshawar and Karachi, while fireworks also lit up the sky. “Congratulations to the Pakistan Team & esp to Babar Azam who led from the front, as well as to the brilliant