Ronald Acuna, Ozzie Albies go deep as youthful Braves beat Reds

The Atlanta Braves’ youth movement is going long.

Ronald Acuna Jr. and Ozzie Albies, the two youngest players in the major leagues, homered and combined for five RBIs to lead Atlanta over the Cincinnati Reds 7-4 Thursday and give the Braves a split of the four-game series.

“He makes the club more athletic,” Snitker said. “Batting, fielding, running the bases — he makes the club better.”

Sam Freeman (1-1) retired all four batters he faced and Arodys Vizcaino pitched a one-hit ninth for his second save. Cincinnati dropped to 5-20 for the first time in franchise history.

“The Braves are playing good baseball,” Reds interim manager Jim Riggleman said. “We didn’t have an answer for the middle of their lineup.”

Bucks star Giannis Antetokounmpo says his team’s Game 6 win over the Boston Celtics was an important step for the young team’s development.

Antetokounmpo’s performance, and ability to make plays when his team needed them, took a huge burden off the rest of the group.

“I thought he played great,” Bucks interim head coach Joe Prunty said of Antetokounmpo. “I don’t think he forced anything. I think he took opportunities that were there for him. He knows the spots to get to, but we also have to give him spacing around him to make sure we are in the right spots so that he has room to operate. … Overall, Giannis played an outstanding game. One of his best plays was the offensive rebound where he pretty much just jumped up, put his arms up, made a play that very few people in this league can make.”

Teammate Anthony Rizzo says he thinks Bryant is heading in the right direction.

“He seems good,” Rizzo said. “It’s a scary thing.”

Chicago’s Yoan Moncada hit his first career leadoff homer . But at 5-16, the White Sox are off to their worst start since 1950.

Zunino doubled and scored in a two-run third and gave the Mariners a 4-3 lead with an opposite-field, solo drive to right against James Shields in the sixth.

“The rhythm, the timing’s, the biggest thing and that’s what’s gonna come,” Zunino said. “Obviously, that’s where I’m trying to drive those fastballs. It’s tough on a day like today when you have Shields (who) can mix it up so well, add that really slow curveball and was able to locate it just below the zone. But I was just able to try to battle, get in a good count and get a good pitch to hit.”sl_cardinals_023

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