The Atlanta Braves, who entered Monday with Major League Baseball's best record, extended the sport's longest active winning streak with a 4-2 victory against the Cleveland Guardians (box score). The Braves have now won each of their last nine contests; no other MLB team entered Monday having won more than three consecutive games.
The Braves were led on Monday night by center fielder Michael Harris II, who delivered two home runs and drove in a pair of runs. Harris' performance continues a recent hot stretch that has turned his season around. Indeed, he entered the month of June hitting .174/.260/.266 on the year. He'd hit .360/.375/.590 with five home runs in 27 games since entering Monday. On the season, he's now hitting .265/.318/.443 with nine home runs, 24 runs batted in, and 11 steals.
Designated hitter Marcell Ozuna also homered, and right fielder Ronald Acuña Jr., meanwhile, stole his 40th base of the season. In doing so, he became the first player in the history of the American or National League to clear a series of statistical thresholds before the All-Star break.
Braves rookie right-hander Bryce Elder, named to the NL All-Star Team on Sunday night, recorded yet another quality start. He held the Guardians to two runs on seven hits and two walks in 6 ⅔ innings. Elder struck out just one batter on the night, and that came in the sixth inning against Josh Naylor.
The Braves will play the second of their three-game set on Tuesday night. Later this week, the Braves will take on the Tampa Bay Rays in what may prove to be a World Series preview -- those are, as it stands, the two teams with the best records in their respective leagues.