The Braves had three All-Star starters announced after Phase 2 of the voting. Ronald Acuña Jr. will be starting in right field, Orlando Arcia will man shortstop, and Sean Murphy got the nod behind the plate. However, five more of their teammates will be joining them as reserves.
Ozzie Albies will back up Luis Arraez at second base. Matt Olson will join former Brave Freddie Freeman as the team’s first basemen, and Austin Riley will also represent the National League at third base. If you’re following along closely, that means the entire Braves infield has been recognized as All-Star stars, which Ron Washington called “probably the most emotional day of my career.”
— Bally Sports: Braves (@BravesOnBally) July 2, 2023
The nominations didn’t stop there, however. Bryce Elder and Spencer Strider will also be joining the Braves infield and Ronald Acuña, giving the Braves eight All-Stars in total, including four first timers.
You could damn near make an entire team of All-Stars with the Braves lineup, and there were probably others that could have been considered. Michael Harris has burst out of his slump in a big way, entering the All-Star break as one of the hottest hitters in baseball to go along with his elite defense in the outfield. Eddie Rosario and Marcell Ozuna have also played spectacularly after a sluggish first month of the season, and Travis d’Arnaud does not get enough credit for his work as Sean Murphy’s backup. If it weren’t for Murphy, d’Arnaud probably would be in the All-Star Game.
I would also be remiss if I didn’t mention Jesse Chavez. The 39-year-old may be injured, but I was really hoping he would get the recognition. He’s been the Braves best reliever this season behind a carer year, posting a 1.55 ERA over 31 appearances. Perhaps a spot opens up over the next week or so, and Chavez gets the nod because the Braves wouldn’t be where they are today without his stellar work.
Photo: Jeff Robinson/Icon Sportswire