Bleacher Report gives their mid-season grade for the Braves

MLB: JUN 07 Mets at Braves Braves A.J. Minter

Kerry Miller of Bleacher Report recently handed out their mid-season grades for all 30 MLB teams, and their grade for the Braves is somewhat shocking. Atlanta only earned a B+, despite owning the best record in baseball. That’s pretty absurd, but here’s Miller’s explanation.

Preseason Win Total: 94.5

Record, Run Differential and Current Trajectory: 55-27, +136, 107.3 wins

Quarter-Season Grade: B+

Current Grade: B+

A lot of readers were livid in mid-May when Atlanta was given a B-plus grade, despite having the best record in the National League and despite being the favorite to win the World Series.

Well, all of those things are still true. Atlanta is an even heavier favorite (+350) to win it all than it was seven weeks ago (+600) and is running away with the NL’s No. 1 seed, and merely has a B-plus to show for it.

But let’s not forget that these grades are based on how the team has performed relative to preseason expectations, and that Atlanta was viewed as one of the top World Series threats to open the year.

Anything better than a C for a preseason World Series candidate is pretty remarkable.

Case in point: Of the seven teams that had preseason win totals of at least 90—Atlanta, Houston, San Diego, Toronto, both New Yorks and the Los Angeles Dodgers—Atlanta is the only one with a grade better than C-minus. Moreover, of the 13 teams with a preseason win total of at least 84, only Tampa Bay and Atlanta are on track to surpass their win total, let alone on track to do so by more than 10 wins.

So, put down your pitchforks. We’re not disrespecting this NL juggernaut with this grade.

Miller is grading each of these teams off of a scale based on their preseason expectations. With that being said, the Braves should still receive an A, or even better. They were projected by many outlets to finish second in the NL East, and even their Vegas over/under was set at 94.5. That’s extremely high, but the Braves are still on pace to beat that by 15 games.

It’s damn near impossible for the Braves to have been any better through the first half of the season, so Miller is basically saying they aren’t capable of earning even an A-. It doesn’t make sense, but hey, to each their own. If it were up to me, the Braves would receive an A+. They are on another planet compared to the rest of the league.

Photo: Rich von Biberstein/Icon Sportswire

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