Atlanta Braves second baseman, Ozzie Albies quietly put together one of the great power seasons for a second baseman in baseball history. It was likely "quiet" due to the fact that teammates Ronald Acuna Jr. and Matt Olson were re-writing the record books.
Braves Ozzie Albies hoped to bounce back in 2023
Ozzie Albies entered the 2023 season as a bounce-back candidate. Albies was an All-Star in 2021 with 30 homers and 106 RBI. In 2022 he struggled with injuries and registered just 269 plate appearances. He had a .703 OPS over those PAs which was good for a 93 OPS+.
Albies suffered a broken foot after 62 games to start the 2022 season. He made his return only to break his pinky two games later. It was a tough season to establish momentum for Ozzie. His injuries opened the door for Vaughn Grissom to make a splash at second base.
Ozzie Albies' power puts him in rarified air among second baseman
Albies entered the 2023 season healthy and ready to regain his proper form, and he did. Albies finished with a .280/.336/.513 triple slash line. He crossed the 30-homer mark for the second time in his career with 33 dingers and 109 RBI.
To put that in perspective, there have only been 55 occasions in which a second baseman has hit 30 homers in a season. That's over the entire history of baseball. Ozzie Albies has two of them through his age-26 season.
Albies finished with 68 extra-base hits on the season and chipped in 13 steals. His 124 OPS+ was the highest of his career. Albies earned his third All-Star selection. Albies finished sixth in the NL in total bases with 306. He led all second basemen in RBI with 109 in 2023. His 109 RBIs tied him with Juan Soto for third in the NL.
Continued dominance vs. LHP
He continued his dominance against left-handed pitching in 2023. When facing LHP, Albies slashed .391/.406/.617 with five of his 33 homers coming from the right side of the plate. However, he was no easy out for righties this year hitting .250 with 28 homers and a .485 SLG. He ended up with a .803 OPS vs. RHP and a 1.023 OPS vs. LHP.
Ozzie Albies LOVES driving in runs for Atlanta
Albies registered 127 PAs while leading off an inning. In those PAs he hit just .155 with a .513 OPS. On the flipside, Ozzie becomes a hawk stalking an injured field mouse when he has runners in scoring position. With RISP, Albies hit .298 with a .353 OBP, and a .519 SLG. With the game late and close, Albies had an .801 OPS. In tie games his OPS shot up to .956.
Ozzie Albies: Cruiserweight size with heavyweight strength
Despite standing just 5'8" and weighing less than Rey Mysterio Jr., Ozzie Albies has established himself as one of the great power-hitting second basemen in the game. If he can sustain this sort of production he might be putting together a potential Hall of Fame career at the keystone.
The Braves had one of the greatest offenses in the history of baseball in 2023 and Ozzie Albies was a more significant part of that than he got credit for.