Michael Harris II, Spencer Strider not the first Braves to be No. 1 and 2 in ROY race

dkb220729044 ari vs atl

The Braves have faltered in recent days, dropping two out of three games to the Mariners and falling 1.5 games behind the division-leading Mets. But the club still can make up ground in the NL East, partly due to the outstanding rookie class of Spencer Strider, Michael Harris II, and Vaughn Grissom, as the first two lead the National League Rookie of the Year race. Interestingly enough, it’s actually not the first pair of Braves rookies to be No. 1 and 2 in the ROY race, as Craig Kimbrel and Freddie Freeman did the same in 2011.


Strider’s first start this month might’ve been the nail in the ROY coffin, striking out 16 Rockies over eight scoreless innings — the most strikeouts in a game by any pitcher this year and a Braves record for a nine-inning game. On the season, the 23-year-old right-hander is 10-4 with a 2.69 ERA and 13.6 SO/9 over 120 2/3 innings. Strider is back on the mound tonight against the Giants as he looks to cement his flag atop the ROY race.  

However, I’d argue that Harris is the more important player for the Braves. The club’s rotation is strong, and the outfield was shaky at best when Harris was called up from Double-A Mississippi. He completely solidified the bottom of the lineup and the defense in the outfield. The 21-year-old center fielder batted .337 with a .990 OPS, four homers and five steals in August on his way to a second Rookie of the Month award. Following his two homer performance yesterday, Harris is up to a .311 batting average, .909 OPS, 18 home runs and 16 stolen bags in his rookie season.

Rich von Biberstein/Icon Sportswire

Scroll to Top
%d bloggers like this: