NL East: The Strongest Division?

I am an Atlanta Braves fan and have been all of my life. While the Braves are not the strongest team, by a long shot, in the NL East they are extremely strong and young. That’s probably the largest advantage that this division has, it is for the most part full of young players. The Marlins and braves are probably the youngest with the Phillies and Mets following behind.

Let’s start at the top with the Mets. They are arguably the best team in the division. They have great fielders in David Wright, Jose Reyes, and Carlos Beltran to name a few. The best part is that they also have some great hitters in the three previously named players, then you have to add in Carlos Delgado and, I hate to say it, Gary Sheffield. They also have a pretty solid pitching squad.

Now you have the Phillies, the 2008 World Champions. They are and extremely scary team because they tend to turn on the after burners in the last couple of innings. It seems like after they seventh inning they realize, it must be time to start playing because we’re about to lose. They also have arguably the best closer in the game in Brad Lidge (168 saves out 196 opportunities, career). What makes it even worse is that they have some great starting pitching to set up Lidge. And of course you cannot forget about the slew of hitting talent that resides on this team.

Third in the division would have to be the Atlanta Braves. The Braves have, in my opinion, one of the top 10 baseball players of all time in Chipper Jones. He has been consistently one of the top hitters in baseball throughout his career and is also a great fielding third basemen. They also have some great young talent in Francoeur, McCann, Schafer and Escobar. These four are not just good fielders but pretty good hitters, with the exception of Francoeur sometimes. To add to this great hitting they have some good starting pitching and closers. The only real problem on the pitching staff is their middle relievers.

Then the Marlins, who started out HOT but quickly cooled off. They are made up of some great young talent, but that might just be their problem they are too young. But who knows they could end up doing what the Rays did last year. Pitching might be the main thing holding them back from making the playoffs. They just don’t have the experience to go into the fall months and consistently win.

Lastly you have the Nationals. What can be said about a team that sends their two best players out in jerseys that say “NATINALS”? They do have some great talent in Zimmerman and Dunn, but two players can only carry the team for so long.

Overall, I feel that every team but the “NATINALS” will finish with more than 80 wins, maybe not much more but definitely more than 80. I also feel that you will see two teams from this division in the playoffs.

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~ by bravesball on April 27, 2009.

One Response to “NL East: The Strongest Division?”

  1. Hi Brendon,
    Your blog looks great, even though I’m not really into sports it was an interesting read. Seems like you know your stuff. Good Luck with it!
    Jen

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