The Atlanta Braves hope to have a better showing on Saturday evening as they dropped game one against the Nats 10-6 on Friday. There aren't any stakes on the line for the Braves but the Nationals are hoping to finish strong.
Spencer Strider starts for the last time in the regular season and he is just a few strikeouts shy of John Smoltz’s franchise record. He is also just one win away from his 20th. The last Braves pitcher to reach the 20-win mark was Kyle Wright during the 2022 campaign.
Add Spencer to the long list of Braves setting personal milestones in 2023. Expect Spencer to get a shot at breaking Smoltz's record and a chance at earning his 20th win but I wouldn't expect him to go more than 5 innings. Snit will want to give him a chance to get plenty of rest for the playoffs as he likely will start game one of the NLDS.
Speaking of personal milestones, Ronald Acuna Jr. isn't done breaking individual records this year and finds himself in line to break two more of them. The first is the Braves franchise record for stolen bases in a season, set by Otis Nixon back in 1991. Acuna needs just one more base to set that record.
He is also tied with Mookie Betts with the most RBI in a single season by a leadoff batter. Betts had broken the record of 104 RBI previously set by Charlie Blackmon. However, as of right now, Betts and Acuna are tied at 106 RBI. Ronald has the chance to snub Betts for that accomplishment and the MVP.
As a team, the Braves are still seeking to break the MLB record for most home runs hit in a season. They sit at 304 currently which is just 4 away from breaking that record. This team has the ability to break out 4 home runs in a game easily so there's a good chance they beat that record.
They will face off with Nationals starter Joan Adon. Adon walks a good bit of batters and allows a good bit of hard contact. That doesn't bode well for him facing a team of this caliber. He did face the Braves back on Sept. 24 and lasted 4.2 innings. He allowed 4 runs on 5 hits with 4 walks and 5 strikeouts.
It's never fun facing the same team twice but especially not within a week. Adon will likely head for an early exit again as this Braves offense has found its stride again. First pitch is set for 7:20 PM EST and can be seen on Bally Sports Southeast.