Braves: Remembering some of the greatest individual efforts from the 2022 season

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The Braves had a magical end to the 2022 season, getting scorching hot in June and capturing the NL East at the last minute. Winning 101 games is an achievement in itself, but I wanted to highlight many of the individual efforts that made those 101 wins possible.

Spencer Strider and Charlie Morton Strike Out 200 Each

With a team that has a rich history of pitching like the Braves, you would expect them to have a pair of 200 strikeout pitchers in a season. That didn’t come to fruition until 2022, with two names you may not have expected:

Wright Wins 20

It’s so easy to be happy for Kyle Wright.

Kyle Wright really deserved this. I was one of the few people in his camp before this season, and I’m glad his confidence from the 2021 World Series translated to this season.

Extra Base Hits Galore

The Braves had a knack for extra base hits, especially doubles. Austin Riley fell just short of a 40/40 season, but he did pace the NL with 79 extra base hits. Teammate Matt Olson fell just short of Riley with 78. Both guys were huge catalysts for this offense, and the Braves are gonna need more of what they have been cooking in the postseason.

Matt Olson and Dansby Swanson go the distance and earn some days off

This season, Matt Olson and Dansby Swanson were the only two players in the majors to play all 162 games. They’re getting some much deserved rest skipping the Wild Card Round. Both guys were extremely clutch against the Mets; they earned their days off.

The 9 Hole

The Braves received insane production from the 9th spot in their lineup, whether it was Vaughn Grissom, the aforementioned Harris, Robbie Grossman, or whoever else needed to fill in that day. The Braves got 96 RBIs out of the spot — second most in MLB history.

Kenley Comes Up Clutch

Kenley Jansen had his moments in 2022, but he still paced the NL in saves with 41, including four in five days — three of those coming against the Mets to capture the NL East. Kenley clutched up when it mattered:

He’s only the 3rd guy to save 40 games in franchise history, joining John Smoltz and Craig Kimbrel

Raisel Iglesias Dazzles

One of the most underrated trade deadline acquisitions in all of baseball, Raisel Iglesias has been lights out for Atlanta in a setup role.

He’s going to be a massive piece in October.

Chicks Dig the Long Ball

The Braves had eight players hit 15 home runs for the first time in franchise history, and the number could have easily been ten. Ozzie Albies missed almost 100 games and had eight home runs, and Adam Duvall had 12 in 86 games. Regardless, this team is loaded with power from top to bottom.

Braves Catchers Step Up

Travis d’Arnaud and Wild Bill Contreras were two of the best catchers in baseball this season. Both guys never let the other one get a leg up, and even though d’Arnaud was the primary catcher, they were equally important. They provided Atlanta with a ton of offense. From Mark Bowman:

William Contreras tallied 20 homers and Travis d’Arnaud contributed 18 homers during what was an All-Star season for both Braves catchers. They are one of six catching duos to ever both hit at least 18 homers in the same season. The Royals duo of Salvador Perez and MJ Melendez also recently accomplished this.

I expect both guys to come up clutch in the postseason again.

Harris II is sensational as a rookie

Not only did Michael Harris impress as a rookie, he impressed overall — really showing out for the Braves and honestly saving their season:

Harris finished one home run shy of a 20/20 season as a rookie, and he may still bring home a Gold Glove for his incredible defense in center field.

Speaking of Rookies… The kids are alright.

Vaughn Grissom, Michael Harris II, and Spencer Strider all gave the Braves a breath of life. Strider and Harris will duke it out for NL Rookie of the year. Both were impressive, but we already talked about Harris. Not every day do you see Randy Johnson’s records being broken:

Vaughn Grissom came back down to earth, but he gave the Braves a huge spark when they were hitting a small snag. Who could forget his first MLB home run (with the bat flip to boot)?

It was an incredible regular season; however, the job isn’t finished. This team has back-to-back aspirations, attempting to become the first team to do so since the Yankees went for a three-peat in 2000.

Photographer: Jeff Robinson/Icon Sportswire

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