The 2022 MLB season is set to kick off in less than two weeks, leaving the Atlanta Braves to get ready to defend their World Series title. A team hasn't won back-to-back championships since the New York Yankees won three between 1998 and 2000, so it's safe to say that the Braves have a tough road ahead of them.
The Braves excelled last season thanks to their starting rotation averaging a 3.84 ERA (No. 7). Keeping that in mind, fans will likely think Atlanta's ranking on MLB.com's starting rotation power rankings is flat out disrespectful.
Braves Power Rankings
Starting Rotation Power Rankings
MLB.com's Anthony Castrovince has ranked the Braves as having the eighth-best rotation in the league ahead of the 2022 season. While that isn't the worst ranking, it does seem disrespectful given that the club is the defending World Series champion.
Atlanta's starting rotation of Max Fried, Charlie Morton, Ian Anderson, Huascar Ynoa and Kyle Wright are all returning players from last year's championship run. This starting five accounts for 104 of the club's starts in 2021 while also combining for 41 victories.
The biggest question mark of the bunch is Wright, who pitched only 6.1 innings over two starts last year. He has a 6.56 ERA in 21 games (14 starts) over four seasons, so a strong performance by him until Mike Soroka returns from his Achilles injury is a must.
Nevertheless, the Braves are fortunate enough to have Morton and Fried in their rotation, both of whom finished top five in Cy Young voting over the last three seasons. Additionally, Anderson was rock-solid last year, placing fifth in the NL Rookie of the Year race.
The Braves will need their rotation to pitch consistently if they hope to repeat as champions. FanDuel Sportsbook is currently giving Atlanta +1300 odds (T-No. 7) to win the 2022 World Series.
Devon Platana is not a FanDuel employee. The views expressed in his articles are the author's alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of FanDuel.