The 2022 MLB season has crossed the midway mark and it's starting to become clear which teams are contenders and which teams are pretenders. The Atlanta Braves have caught fire over the last two months to rise up the NL East division title and their fans will love ESPN's first-half grades.
Atlanta Braves News
David Schoenfield gave the Braves a A-, which trails only the Los Angeles Dodgers (A) in the NL. It's worth noting that the New York Mets also received an A-, suggesting that this race is going to be close down the stretch. A division title means much more than a Wild Card spot in the MLB playoffs.
Atlanta has found a way to keep mashing at the plate despite losing star first baseman Freddie Freeman in free agency last offseason. The Braves rank first in the league with 1,423 total bases and second with 147 home runs. Third baseman Austin Riley leads the way with 27 HRs and 61 RBI.
On the mound, the Braves have benefitted from the emergence of young pitchers like Spencer Strider (3.03 ERA) and Kyle Wright (11-4 record). Atlanta ranks seventh in the majors with a 3.61 ERA and have five relievers on the roster that have made at least 28 appearances with an ERA under 4.00.
The Braves entered the All-Star break winning seven of their last 10 games and now sit just 2.5 games back of first place in the NL East with a 56-38 record. Atlanta should not be overlooked and has the fifth-best odds to win the World Series at +900, according to FanDuel Sportsbook.
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