One way the Atlanta Braves can exploit the Brewers in the NLDS
The Atlanta Braves have quite a few players capable of a game-changing home run against the vulnerable Milwaukee middle relievers.
As stated previously, the Atlanta Braves are one of the most dynamic power-hitting teams in baseball.
Most teams have to hope that the “right guys” come up at the “right time” in a playoff series.
However, the Braves truly do have one of those lineups one through eight where any of the hitters can go deep in a given moment.
Some, however, have a tendency for the long ball in those middle innings more so than others.
Whether it’s the ability to make a quick adjustment to a new pitcher, having a few prior at-bats to sharpen timing, or thriving in a mid-to-late game situation, these guys get it done against middle relief.
Jorge Soler has put up a .560 slugging percentage in the 7th inning of games this year, his highest of any inning.
Chalk Adam Duvall as a guy who loves facing middle relievers, too. Of his 38 homers on the year, 15 have taken place in the 6th-8th innings.
Same for Dansby Swanson, who has accounted for 12 of his 27 home runs in innings 6-8 – again – mostly versus middle relievers. In fact, Swanson’s single highest home run total by inning is the 6th, where he’s accumulated 7 home runs on the season.
The Atlanta Braves are sure to have tough sledding against the Brewers’ mighty starters, and Josh Hader might very well see multiple innings of relief to stymie the Braves’ power.
But if there’s an advantageous window for Atlanta to collect runs versus this tough staff, it’s against Milwaukee’s middle relief. And it’s via the home run ball, something the Atlanta Braves are known for in 2021.