'Electric' d'Arnaud goes deep 3 times for first HRs of 2024

ATLANTA -- Travis d'Arnaud hit his first three home runs of the season, including a grand slam in the sixth that gave Atlanta the lead, and the Braves beat the Texas Rangers 8-3 on Friday night for their fifth straight win.

Chris Sale (2-1) allowed three runs and five hits in seven innings in the interleague matchup of first-place teams, but the left-hander didn't want to talk about his pitching.

"To be honest, nobody cares," Sale said. "We're here to talk about one thing and one thing only. Tonight was about Travis, and that was nothing short of electric."

After driving in six runs with the three homers, d'Arnaud said, "Sometimes it's better to be lucky than good."

Adolis Garcia's two-run double off Sale in the sixth tied it at 3.

Rangers left-hander Jacob Latz (0-1) issued one-out walks to Matt Olson and Marcell Ozuna before a single by Michael Harris II loaded the bases for the National League East-leading Braves. D'Arnaud lined a fastball from Latz 433 feet to left-center for his third career grand slam and second three-homer game.

D'Arnaud was a surprise offensive star against the American League West-leading Rangers. He entered with four RBIs for the season before driving in six Friday night.

Given an opportunity to join Bob Horner in 1986 against Montreal as the only Atlanta players to hit four homers in a game, d'Arnaud grounded out to shortstop Corey Seager in the eighth. He hit his first two homers off left-hander Andrew Heaney.

"I'm sure everybody was hoping to see something like that," d'Arnaud said of the chance for a fourth homer.

Heaney allowed three runs and five hits with two walks in five innings. Both walks came in a long first inning.

"I thought he regrouped and threw the ball very well," Rangers manager Bruce Bochy said. "That's the guy we need, and so he should, I think, feel good about how he finished up his outing."

Harris added an eighth-inning homer for Atlanta.

On the day ace Spencer Strider made his first return trip to the Braves clubhouse since having season-ending elbow surgery April 13, a healthy Sale provided a boost of confidence for the rotation. The left-hander allowed two hits and one run in his first five innings.

Ozuna's run-scoring single in the first extended his hitting streak to 17 games, the longest of his career and the longest active streak in the majors.