2019: Dancing in the Rain
The 2019 season featured a lot of personality as the Braves brought on Josh Donaldson for a season to bolster their offense. Ronald Acuña Jr. chased history in the second half and found himself in the MVP conversation alongside both Freddie Freeman and Josh Donaldson.
Mike Soroka proved himself to be one the best up-and-coming starting pitchers that season and Brian McCann enjoyed one of the most memorable seasons of his career upon returning to where it all started before retiring at the end of the year. Guess who caught the ball when the Braves clinched in 2019? If you guess Ronald Acuna Jr., you are correct. Two years in a row he caught the final out as the Braves clinched their second straight NL East title.
Donaldson provided exactly what the Braves needed from him and was a perfect transition year for Austin Riley who made his debut in 2019. JD being in Atlanta also provided fans with one of the most iconic dugout celebrations.
Brian McCann hits a walk-off single to complete a comeback win
The Braves trailed the Phillies 7-2 before scoring a pair of runs in the seventh and eighth innings to get the Braves closer to tying the game. Austin Riley kept things going in the bottom of the ninth with a two-out RBI double and Brian McCann ended it when he followed with a walk-off single that split two Philly defenders to send the Braves home with a 9-8 win.
This was one of the most exciting moments of the season and a great moment to add to the reel for a great career for Brian McCann. That was his 8th career walk-off hit and it came in exciting fashion. His post-game interview says everything about how important this moment was for him.
Ronald Acuña joins the 30/30 club
When Ronald Acuña Jr. stole second base during the eighth inning of an extra-innings 2-1 win over the Mets at Citi Field, he became the second-youngest player in MLB history to hit 30 homers and steal 30 bases in a season. The only other Atlanta Braves players to achieve a 30/30 season were Hank Aaron, Dale Murphy, and Ron Gant.
Acuña was on pace to break the coveted 40/40 threshold but was only able to get one-half of that done. He missed 40 stolen bases by just 3 of them. He has more than made up for that stolen base total in the current 2023 season as he is approaching 70 stolen bases and has 39 home runs.
Ronald also earned his first All-Star selection in 2019 for his MVP-worthy performance during this season. It showed fans a preview of what was to come next for the superstar outfielder.