After wild doubleheader with Phillies, the Atlanta Braves magic number is 4

After splitting Monday's doubleheader with the Phillies, the Braves now have a magic number of 4 to win the division.

Atlanta Braves v Houston Astros
Atlanta Braves v Houston Astros / Bob Levey/GettyImages

The Atlanta Braves split their doubleheader yesterday against their division rivals the Philadelphia Phillies. This can be considered a productive day as Atlanta’s magic number to win the division is now down to 4. This number represents a statistic that is bound to change after 2023.  

Since the franchise moved to Atlanta in 1966, the Braves have had a total of four players win the NL MVP. Dale Murphy did it twice (1982 and 1983). Terry Pendleton took the honor in 1991, Chipper Jones in 1999, and most recently, Freddie Freeman in 2020. 

Each of these players earned the award through different skill sets. Let’s take a look at each of their MVP seasons a little more in-depth. 

1. Dale Murphy

Dale Murphy
San Francisco Giants v Atlanta Braves / Matthew Grimes Jr./Atlanta Braves/GettyImages

In both seasons that Dale Murphy won the MVP, he played in all 162 games. To go two consecutive seasons without missing a game is an impressive feat in itself. Attaining an MVP award in back-to-back seasons is straight-dominant. 

1982: .281 average, 36 HR, 109 RBIs (led MLB) and 23 stolen bases

1983: .302, 36 HR, 121 RBIs (led MLB) and 30 stolen bases

2. Terry Pendleton

Terry Pendleton
San Francisco Giants v Atlanta Braves / Matthew Grimes Jr./Atlanta Braves/GettyImages

Contrary to Murphy, Terry Pendleton acquired the MVP title by being a base hit machine. Pendleton’s award-winning season in 1991 ended with only 6 homers and 58 RBIs. Power may not have been his forte, but he played to his strengths well if you look at the stats below. 

1991: 187 hits (led MLB), .319 (led MLB), 6 HR, 58 RBI

3. Chipper Jones

Chipper Jones
Cincinatti Reds v Atlanta Braves / Matthew Grimes Jr./Atlanta Braves/GettyImages

Chipper Jones consistently put up ridiculous numbers in a Braves uniform across his 19 seasons. However, he only earned one MVP award in 1999, where his numbers were more than deserving. 

1999: .319 average, 45 HR, 110 RBIs, 25 stolen bases

4. Freddie Freeman

Freddie Freeman
World Series - Atlanta Braves v Houston Astros - Game Six / Carmen Mandato/GettyImages

In 2020, the MLB season was shortened to 60 games thanks to the global pandemic chaos caused by Covid. Braves legend and now Dodgers first basemen, Freddie Freeman, made the most of those games. Freeman left no doubt that he was the MVP in 2020. 

2020: .341 average, 13 HR, 53 RBIs