The Braves rout over Pittsburgh reminds us just how great this offense can be

dfu19033041 braves at phillies

If you missed Friday night’s game, the Braves offense broke out in a big way and scored 20 runs from 20 hits on the lowly Pirates. Every hitter in Atlanta’s lineup — save for the pitcher — came away with at least one hit in the game, and only Freddie Freeman finished without a multi-hit performance. Yeah, it was a crazy game that featured an eight-run 8th inning, and the Braves even accomplished a feat no other team in history has managed. According to STATS, Atlanta became the first club in MLB history to slug seven or more home runs AND two grand slams in a single game. Wow.

Here’s a clip of a bunch of Braves homers…

Let me be clear, last night’s bashing of Pittsburgh really isn’t all that significant in the grand scheme of things. The Pirates are one of the worst clubs in the majors this season, not to mention it was just one game that raised the Braves playoff odds a whopping 0.1 percentage points (32.6 to 32.7), per FanGraphs. Putting up 5 runs and winning would’ve been just as beneficial to Atlanta as teams don’t get extra credit for beating a team by 19. However, it is pretty cool to look at just how much of an impact Friday night’s game had on the offense. I mean, just because of this game, the Braves team AVG for the 2021 season went from .234 all the way up to .251. From just one game! Of course, that can happen when the offense collectively hits .488.

Although Atlanta wasn’t the only offense that went off on Friday, the Padres and Athletics had a big night as well. As San Diego beat Seattle 16-1 and Oakland slugged four homers themselves against the Angels. But, despite finishing yesterday with the 7th-highest team HardHit% (45.7), 13th-highest max exit-velocity (110 MPH), and 9th-highest average exit-velocity (92.7 MPH), the Braves lineup paced the majors in just about every statistical category on Friday…

  • 1.5 added fWAR (1st / 0.5 WAR more than SDP)
  • .488 AVG (1st)
  • 316 wRC+ (1st / 79 points higher than SDP)
  • 7 HR (1st)
  • 1.692 OPS (1st / 442 points higher than SDP)
  • 83.7 contact% (5th)

The trio of Austin Riley (3 for 4, 2 HR, 2B, 3 RBI), Dansby Swanson (3 for 4, HR, 2B, RBI), and Marcell Ozuna (3 for 5, HR, 2 2B, 2 RBI) all added 0.3 fWAR apiece to their season total thanks to their performances last night, and Ozzie Albies (2 for 5, HR, 2B, 3 RBI) added 0.2. Ronald Acuna Jr.’s home run in the 2nd inning ties him with the Angels’ Shohei Ohtani for most in MLB with 14. And Riley, who many of us didn’t even think could hold down third base in 2021, is now up to a .310 AVG and .914 OPS for the season, which is the best AVG among the lineup’s regulars… even better than Acuna’s.

Last night doesn’t provide extra help for the Braves in the standings, or really their odds regarding the postseason. Hell, one win doesn’t really do anything over the course of a 162-game season. However, Friday’s performance versus Pittsburgh reminded us just how crazy-good this Atlanta offense is, especially when they are all going simultaneously. Hopefully, they’ll keep it up.

 

 

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