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Braves Win First World Series in 26 Years

Written by:
C Costigan
Published on:
Nov/04/2021

Forgotten is the disappointment of 14 consecutive division titles leading to just a single World Series win and the four other World Series losses during that stretch in the 1990s. 

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Forgotten are the six straight division titles to begin the 2000s that led to six straight losses in the NLDS.

Forgotten are the injuries this year to superstar Ronald Acuna and 2019 Rookie of the Year runner-up Mike Soroka. Forgotten is the below .500 record that lasted until August.

What will never be forgotten by Braves fans, waiting 26 long years to celebrate a second World Series title since the team moved to Atlanta in 1966, is the absolutely dominating performance by the team in the Game 6 clincher at Houston.

Back on the road and back in the underdog’s role, the Braves — who came into Game 6 as slight road underdogs according to the MLB odds — responded in the biggest of ways, winning the game 7-0. Any hopes the Astros had of extending this series to a seventh game were snuffed out by a great pitching performance by Max Fried. The loser in Game 2 allowed just four hits over six innings, striking out six.

At 44-45 at the All-Star Break, the Braves had just an 8.7 percent chance of making the postseason. Today they are just the second team in history (along with the 1964 Cardinals) to be a World Series champion after being below .500 at the All-Star Break. 

World Series MVP Jorge Soler 

Thought to be possible sellers at the trade deadline, the Braves went the other way and became buyers. You can’t replace someone like Ronald Acuna, Jr. with just one player, but maybe you can with a bunch of players. The Braves traded for Adam Duvall, Joc Pederson, Eddie Rosario, and Jorge Soler, who two years earlier hit 48 home runs with the Kansas City Royals.

Soler was having a less than impressive year in Kansas City this year, hitting just .192 with 13 home runs and an OPS of .658 - the second-lowest total of his career. But the Braves needed a bat, and he had had a good one in previous years, so they took a chance.

In 55 regular-season games in Atlanta, Soler hit 14 home runs and raised his OPS more than 200 points to .882. He struggled in the NLDS, getting just one hit in 11 at-bats, and he only batted twice in the series against the Dodgers. But in the World Series, Soler shined.

He started off the scoring in Game 6 with a three-run homer - his third home run of the series - and he finished the six games with 20 at-bats, six hits, three home runs, six RBI, and an incredible 1.191 OPS.

After the game, Soler was named the World Series MVP, making him just the second Cuban-born player to win the award, and first, since Livan Hernandez of the Marlins won in 1997. 

2022 World Series Odds 

It did not take long for the 2022 World Series odds to be released.

Once again, the Dodgers are the betting favorite, paying +450 to win the World Series and +250 to win the National League.

The Astros are the favorites to win the American League, at +325, just ahead of the Yankees at +450. A World Series bet on the Astros is paying +650 at the moment.

The Braves are the fourth most-likely team to win the World Series, paying +1200. That leaves them tied on the odds board with the Chicago White Sox. 

MLB Awards Announcements 

The two Rookie of the Year awards will be announced on November 15. The favorite in the American League is Rays’ outfielder Randy Arozarena. The nearly guaranteed winner in the National League is Red’s second baseman Jonathan India.

On November 17, the winners of the Cy Young Award will be announced. ERA winner Robbie Ray of the Blue Jays is the American League favorite. It’s a tight race in the N.L. between Max Scherzer and Corbin Burnes.

The MVPs of each league are announced on November 18. Shohei Ohtani will be crowned in the American League. In the National League, the race is nip-and-tuck between Juan Soto and Bryce Harper.

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