Joc Pederson belted a three-run homer in the fifth inning to lift the host Atlanta Braves to a 3-0 victory over the Milwaukee Brewers on Monday afternoon in Game 3 of their National League Division Series.
Pederson's pinch-hit homer was his second of the series. He also launched a solo shot off Adrian Houser (1-1) in Atlanta's 2-1 series-opening loss on Friday in Milwaukee.
Right-hander Ian Anderson (1-0) scattered three hits and struck out six over five innings for the Braves, who hold a 2-1 lead in the best-of-five series. Atlanta will look to punch its ticket to the NL Championship Series for the second straight season in Game 4 on Tuesday.
The Brewers finished with five hits en route to dropping their second straight 3-0 decision.
The right-handed Houser relieved starter Freddy Peralta to begin the fifth inning and promptly surrendered singles to Travis d'Arnaud and Dansby Swanson. Pederson, who pinch-hit for Anderson, stepped up and deposited a 1-2 fastball from Houser over the wall in right field to stake the Braves to a 3-0 lead.
Three relievers bridged the gap to Will Smith, who retired the side in order in the ninth inning to secure his second save of the series.
A base-running blunder prevented Atlanta from opening the scoring in the second inning.
Austin Riley and Adam Duvall singled to lead off the inning before the former advanced to third on Eddie Rosario's flyout. Riley appeared poised to score on a flyout to left field by d'Arnaud, however Milwaukee outfielder Christian Yelich threw out Duvall at second base before Riley crossed the plate to negate the run.
The Brewers' bid to open the scoring in the fifth fell short despite putting runners on second and third base with no outs. A groundout, a fielder's choice with Luis Urias being caught in a rundown at home and a lineout ended the threat.
Swanson, a shortstop, started an inning-ending double play in the eighth to thwart another threat by Milwaukee.
In the second inning, long-time Braves player and Hall of Famer Chipper Jones failed to catch a foul ball in the stands. The eight-time All-Star and former NL MVP, ironically enough, does not have a Gold Glove on his impressive resume.
--Field Level Media