The Braves finished their ten-game road trip by completing a series win over the Mets. The Braves went 6-4 on their road trip, maintaining a 5.5 game lead over the Phillies.
Atlanta has been the hottest team in all of baseball in the month of June, going 20-8 for the month. It’s been a mix of good offense and pitching, both were on full display while the Braves were on their road trip. In the month of June, the Braves have 56 home runs as a team which leads all of baseball. The Braves have found another gear since making the lineup changes in May. This month of June has seen the Braves offense go to another level.
The Braves have a great chance to extend their lead over the Phillies with the series coming up this week. The three-game set will take the Braves back to Atlanta and a team that is hot after having a great road trip. On the other hand, the Phillies will be coming into Atlanta going 5-5 in their last ten games. The Phillies have played the Miami Marlins and New York Mets, the two cellar dwellers of the NL East, in their last three series, but have not been able to gain ground on the surging Braves.
News and Notes From Weekend
On the road trip, the Braves got dealt some bad news when it was announced Anthony Swarzak would be moved to the 10-day IL for shoulder issues, a problem that plagued Swarzak in New York and Seattle. Since his Braves debut in May, Swarzak has recorded a 0.52 ERA in 17 appearances. He’s recorded 10 holds and one save. Swarzak has been a steady and reliable guy for the Braves bullpen, something the Braves have had issues finding this season. Chad Sobotka was recalled from AAA to replace Swarzak.
Ronald Acuna Jr. and Freddie Freeman were announced as starters for the All-Star game when the starters were announced earlier this week. Today it was announced Mike Soroka would be joining his teammates as the third Braves player to make the All-Star roster. The Braves made some history by having two players, Acuna and Soroka, under 22 who will participate in the All-Star game for the first time in the history of baseball. It’s special anytime you can do a first in the MLB, which has been around since the late 1800s.
Ronald Acuna Jr. will be busy in Cleveland over All-Star weekend. After being named a starter, it was announced Acuna would be competing in the Home Run Derby, too. This will be Acuna’s first opportunity and first-time participating in the Home Run Derby. Acuna has the kind of power to win the Derby, but I’m hoping he hits a few home runs and bows out gracefully. It’s been long rumored that the Home Run Derby has messed up players the second half of the season. Acuna is young enough to do anything so I’ll enjoy getting to see Acuna hit some home runs in Cleveland.
A not so great note from the All-Star weekend announcements were the snubs of Dansby Swanson and Ozzie Albies. Swanson was bumped for Trevor Story and Paul DeJong. DeJong was selected when the Cardinals did not have a representative for the All-Star game, and MLB permits every team must have at least one player from every team. Swanson, who is having the best year of his career and an All-Star worthy season, got bumped for a bad rule. Albies, an All-Star last season, was bumped out by Mike Moustakas, the Milwaukee Brewers second basemen. Both Braves had good arguments to be in the All-Star game but instead will have the weekend off.