FiveThirtyEight has released an article detailing the Braves division race at the break — and the Mets are given a 59% chance to win the NL East. However, that number isn’t as bleak as it sounds.
Three-quarters of baseball's playoff spots are up for grabs. https://t.co/ld0pVKhN6m
— FiveThirtyEight (@FiveThirtyEight) July 20, 2022
The Braves have plenty of games remaining against the Mets that could ultimately determine the division race. 12 out of Atlanta’s 68 remaining contests are versus New York. Whoever wins the majority of those has the best shot at the NL East. Those are the most important games, but FiveThirty Eight suggests the Braves’ have a tough schedule to end the season.
The algorithm says that Atlanta has the 11th hardest schedule in the second half, compared to the Mets 21st ranked slate. While the Mets have it a bit easier, I doubt that gap is as big as advertised; A World Series rematch against Houston and all those games against the Mets make the Braves’ upcoming schedule look overly laborious.
According to the numbers, the Braves will end the second half of the season much like the first: two games behind the Mets. Although the algorithm isn’t favoring the Braves in a lot of ways, it does think Atlanta has a better team overall.
Using an Elo-based formula, the Braves do have a higher skill rating than their rivals up north. I do think that Brian Snitker has a better team behind him, and the stats back that up. While the initial 59% seems ugly, a deeper dig reveals what we already know — the NL East will largely come down to 12 games. I would recommend looking into FiveThirtyEight’s formulas if statistics are your thing.
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