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NL East Review and Preview: The Atlanta Braves

Ronald Acuña swings in a home game for the Atlanta Braves.

The Braves rolled through the regular season before faltering in the playoffs, but they are certainly capable of going all the way.

The Atlanta Braves (104-58) dazzled in the 2023 regular season, concluding with an impressive league-leading record that underscored their dominance across MLB. From commanding pitching performances to explosive offensive displays, the Braves emerged as a force to be reckoned with, clinching the NL East title and securing the top seed in the postseason. Led by standout players like OF Ronald Acuña Jr. and 1B Matt Olson, the team showcased a winning formula that propelled them to the top overall seed.

However, the brilliance of their regular-season triumphs was overshadowed by a surprising postseason upset. In a shocking turn of events, the Braves faced an unexpected early exit in the NLDS against the Philadelphia Phillies for a second-straight season. The postseason no-show against the Phillies left fans and pundits alike questioning the team’s postseason mettle. Despite the regular-season heroics, the abrupt end raised concerns about the Braves’ ability to translate their success into playoff glory, leaving a lingering narrative to be addressed in the seasons that follow for Atlanta.

Month By Month

Spring Training and March

The Braves showed major promise in the preseason, compiling an 18-10 record in Spring Training down in Florida, which ended with a five-game win streak. Atlanta won on Opening Day up in Washington, D.C. over the Nationals to begin on a positive note at 1-0 in the month of March.

April: A Strong Start (17-9)

The Atlanta Braves kicked off the 2023 season with a resounding 17-9 record in April. Key players, including Ronald Acuña Jr. and Matt Olson, set the tone for the team’s success. Both the pitching staff and the offense demonstrated consistency, propelling the Braves to an early lead in the NL East. The strong start instilled confidence and laid the foundation for a promising campaign.

May: Maintaining Momentum (15-14)

May saw the Braves maintaining momentum, finishing the month with a 15-14 record. While not as dominant as April, the team continued to showcase resilience in both tight wins and losses. Standout performances and key victories helped the Braves hold their ground atop the NL East, highlighting their ability to weather challenges and remain competitive.

June: June Brilliance (21-4)

June was a month of brilliance for the Braves, as they surged to an outstanding 21-4 record. The team hit its stride, combining explosive offense with stellar pitching. Notable winning streaks and dominant series performances solidified the Braves as one of the league’s top contenders. June showcased the full spectrum of their capabilities, leaving fans in awe of their exceptional form.

Second Half Push

July: Midseason Challenges (13-10)

July brought midseason challenges for the Braves, finishing with a 13-10 record. The team faced formidable opponents, and injuries tested their depth. While the win-loss ratio dipped slightly, the Braves remained in control of the NL East. The month prompted strategic evaluations and adjustments, setting the stage for a critical second half.

August: August Excellence (21-8)

August witnessed the Braves returning to excellence, concluding the month with a stellar 21-8 record. The team’s offense exploded, and pitching remained solid. Notable series victories against tough rivals solidified their position atop the NL East. As the trade deadline passed, the Braves made strategic moves, bolstering their roster for the postseason push. With such a stable roster, they only needed to fortify the edges. August highlighted their intent to not only win the division but also contend for a deep playoff run.

September: Preparing for October (16-12)

In September, the Braves focused on preparing for October, concluding the regular season with a 16-12 record. Key players fine tuned their performances, and the team faced both playoff-bound opponents and those eager to play spoiler. The Braves secured the NL East title, but the focus shifted to addressing any lingering concerns and entering the postseason with momentum.

The 2023 Atlanta Braves season showcased a journey of highs and challenges, from a dominant June to midseason hurdles in July. The Braves’ resilience, strategic moves, and offensive firepower defined their path to a commanding NL East title. As they set their sights on the postseason, the abrupt NLDS exit against the Phillies served as a reminder that regular-season success doesn’t always guarantee October glory, leaving the Braves and their fans eager for redemption in the seasons to come.


Atlanta served as the class of the field for the majority of the 2023 MLB season. However, the year ended in disappointment yet again, as Atlanta fell to Philadelphia in four games at Citizens Bank Park.

The Braves knew for several weeks they would likely get a rematch against the Phillies, as fans hoped the outcome would be different this time around.

Sure, 1B Rhys Hoskins was unavailable for Philadelphia to fire up the crowd with another signature bat spike. The Braves took steps to avoid rust from a week off by scheduling scrimmages against the Gwinnett Stripers. Later start times provided a chance for the Atlanta crowd to make an impact on home-field this time around.

However, it all proved to not be enough in the end, as the Phillies cruised through Atlanta en route to yet another NLCS appearance.

Now, after finishing a storybook regular season with 104 wins and returning much of the same core, including reigning NL MVP Ronald Acuña Jr., the Braves and their fans are left wondering where to go from here.

Sure, another NL East crown wouldn’t hurt, but ask any fan in Atlanta and they’ll gladly snap the division title streak for a chance at another ring.

2024 Anticipation

Fear of finishing out another golden decade with just one ring has set in for Atlanta, as postseason woes continue to haunt the franchise.

Can GM Alex Anthopoulos save the Braves this time around, just like he did in 2021 at the deadline? If the start to this year’s offseason is any indication, there’s certainly going to be new strategy moving forward.

The Braves have made a half-dozen trades already, although no big splash has been conducted just yet.

For 2023, I am going to predict another NL East division crown for Atlanta, as the Braves seem to have their division’s number in the regular season. A fully healthy Philadelphia may challenge Atlanta, but that roster is built more for a short stretch in October.

I’m rolling with the Braves to win the division, but fully expect management to make the necessary changes to win in October.

Let’s roll the dice here and go with Atlanta to get over the hump and win the Fall Classic once more.

Prediction: Atlanta Braves (98-64) World Series Champions

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