Led by Wright, Braves tie series against Phillies

ATLANTA (AP) — The Braves needed to win this game badly. Fortunately, they had the right man on the mound.

Kyle Wright, the season’s winningest pitcher, pitched six brilliant innings to outmatch Zack Wheeler, and Atlanta tied the NL Division Series at one win apiece, shutting out the Philadelphia Phillies.

Persistent rain delayed the start of the match for three hours. Then, Wright gave up just two hits and got the win on a three-run backing by Atlanta in the bottom of the sixth inning.

The Braves, champions of the last World Series, had lost the first game of the series 7-6 to a maximum of five games.

They came out ahead, thanks to a powerful right arm and great curveball that has finally reached its enormous potential.

“I’ve worked on a lot of things this year,” Wright said. “Really, it all comes down to trust.”

Wright, the fifth overall pick in the 2017 draft, struggled to rise beyond Triple-A, entering this season 2-8 in the majors.

This season alone, his record was 21-5. The Major League pitcher who came closest to him in wins had 18.

Now, Wright has continued to shine in the playoffs. He only faced one threat in the second act, opened by Bryce Harper with a brace. Nick Castellanos followed up with a lob that put Harper in third.

Harper had to rush back to third on a groundout to first, which retired Alec Bohm, and Brandon Marsh struck out throwing a four-seam pitch that reached 96 mph.

“As long as he’s out there and working things out, he’s going to continue to develop, with a confidence that’s going to grow even more,” Braves manager Brian Snitker said of Wright. “With that arsenal that he has, he can be powerful for a long time.”

AJ Minter, Cuban Raisel Iglesias and Kenley Jansen finished the job with three hits, with one inning each. Jensen earned the save, his 20th postseason appearance but first with the Braves, after spending 12 seasons with the Los Angeles Dodgers.

Game 3 is scheduled for Friday in Philadelphia.

For the Phillies, Dominican Jean Segura 3-1.

For the Braves, Venezuelans Ronald Acuña Jr. 3-1 with a run scored, Orlando Arcia 3-0. The Dominican Marcell Ozuna 3-0. Puerto Rican Eddie Rosario 3-0.

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Led by Wright, Braves tie series against Phillies