Atlanta Braves infield is full of horses and homers

Atlanta Braves infielders Ozzie Albies, Freddie Freeman and Austin Riley of the Atlanta Braves celebrate a victory. (Photo by Todd Kirkland/Getty Images)
Atlanta Braves infielders Ozzie Albies, Freddie Freeman and Austin Riley of the Atlanta Braves celebrate a victory. (Photo by Todd Kirkland/Getty Images) /

You may have already heard about the homer tallies being recorded by the Atlanta Braves’ infield.  There’s another equally impressive stat among them.

Everybody likes the home runs (except pitchers), and the infielders of the Atlanta Braves are pounding them out like no team has done since the 2008 Marlins.

That Marlins team fell 1 homer short of having all of their infielders all get to 30 homers… this year’s Braves have a chance to be the first ever to get all four to that plateau.

But that’s only part of the story.  The other side is just how durable all of these Braves have been in a season in which injuries have been more rampant than the COVID-19 virus.

On Tuesday night, the Braves played their 137th (completed) game of the year.  In a statistical oddity, Fangraphs has Dansby Swanson credited with 138 games… that thanks to the suspended contest against the Padres.

Regardless:  Swanson has played in every one of Atlanta’s games this year.

But check the rest of the infielders and how often they’ve played:

If those numbers don’t quite get your attention, check out how this foursome ranks among the major league leaders in games played (as of Tuesday morning):

  • Swanson:  tied for 1st (Whit Merrifield)
  • Riley and Freeman:  tied for 3rd with 5 others
  • Albies:  tied for 19th

How many other teams have this many players with this kind of durability (counting ties, it’s the Top 25)?


Seattle has 3.  Kansas City has 3.  Toronto has 3.  St. Louis almost has 3.  A smattering of clubs have 2 apiece.

Once you get just to the 35th rank — with 130 games played — you begin to realize that a lot of players have missed a significant amount of playing time this year.

You could think of it this way:  out of 644 position players, 609 of them have missed at least a week of games.

Let’s go another level deeper:  before Tuesday’s games, only 186 players had been in as many as 100 games… missing 5+ weeks of games.

Yeah… over 70% of major league players have missed over a month of the season!

But not this Braves infield… a fact that may actually have spooked the Front Office enough to sign Maikel Franco last week.  It clearly wasn’t for the sake of replacing Austin Riley, but it was an insurance policy in case Riley does happen to break down over the last month of the season.

That at least covers the third base position in the case of emergency… and Franco would be playoff-eligible if it comes to that.

One thing we have noted here is that player health was going to be an issue in this second half of the season… particularly given all the losses this Braves club has already endured.

Let's feast on the Home Cooking. dark. Next

But this infield… historically good with the long ball, and now historically good in staying on the field, period.