Entering the 2023 season, the Braves had lost their prized shortstop in Dansby Swanson to the Cubs. This left a gaping hole in the infield that many felt uneasy about. It was originally believed by most that the young middle-infielder Vaughn Grissom would step up to take the shortstop role. It was then decided that after spring training, Arcia would be the one to fill the hole.
Orlando Arcia's 2023 MLB Statistics
The leap in Arcia's game was astounding and shocked many people. From 2016 to 2022, Arcia had slashed .243/.295/.369. In 2023, he slashed .264/.321/.420 and had a career-high in runs, RBI, home runs, doubles, and hits. Arcia improved on every part of his game during 2023 and asserted himself as one of the top shortstops in the league, and a prominent force in a stacked Braves lineup.
Orlando Arcia's First All-Star Appearance
While most people could guess that Austin Riley, Ozzie Albies, and Matt Olson were locks to be all-stars before the season even started, I'm not sure if anyone had Arcia on their bingo card. While Arcia had been a decent player for the Braves in his career, his stats propelled him into the 2023 All-Star game.
This all-star selection led to an awesome moment for Braves fans. For a full inning during the All-Star Game, the entire infield was made up of just Braves players, including Sean Murphy behind the dish. This gave Braves fans a chance to boast their stacked and talented infield, and eight all-stars, to the rest of the league.
Orlando Arcia's 2024 Expectations
Arcia's massive jump in performance this year was unexpected for many, but is it realistic to expect this again next year? For the past three years that he has spent with the Braves, every point of his game has only improved. His tools were finally put on full display this year and having full reign of his position for an entire season allowed people to see all angles of his play.
Arcia is only 29 years old, and he may be entering the prime of his career, starting with this past season. More of the same if not better could be expected to come from the athletic shortstop. It will be exciting for fans to watch more of Arcia and the rest of the outstanding infield play in the future.