2018 Atlanta Braves win NL East
A lot of things went Atlanta’s way on their way to winning the NL East in 2018: Kurt Suzuki found his misplaced bat, Johan Camargo found his career year, Anibal Sanchez pitched to a 2.83 ERA and 144 ERA+, Mike Foltynewicz pitched to a 2.85 ERA, 143 ERA+ and Ronald Acuna Jr. announced his arrival with a .917 OPS and a homer every five games.
Swanson continued to hit in high leverage and RISP situations and struggle the rest of the time, but he and Ozzie Albies became one of the best double-play combos in the league. Swanson finished with +9 DRS and a career-high 5.3 UZR.
A realistic look at Dansby Swanson
I’ve seen a lot of ill-informed discussion (mostly elsewhere) about what Dansby brings to the table. One comment on a post by DO’B called him a replacement-level player… one of the most inaccurate descriptions I’ve seen.
Since 2018 and ignoring the blip that made everyone look much better or much worse than they were in 2020, Dansby is a .250/.318/.429/.747 batter who’s grown into his home run power (he’s now toting a 20-25 homer bat).
After posting 1.5-1.8 fWAR in 2018 and 2019, Swanson posted 3.2 fWAR in 2021, and projections have him between 2.2 and 2.8 in 2022. The value of a win isn’t linear, though most teams seem to treat it that way.
The linear value of a win this year is somewhere between $6.86M and $8M depending on your source. Since 2018, Dansby’s been worth every penny of his contract.
If the Atlanta Braves don’t extend Swanson, they’re going to have to replace him, most likely through free agency or trade, as no one in the system looks like a candidate for the 2023 roster today.