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Pair of Atlanta Braves’ Rookies Competing for 2022 NL Rookie of the Year

The Atlanta Braves had a rough beginning to their 2022 season. Almost a month into the season, the Braves sat in fourth place and it looked like there may have been a championship hangover. However, two of the Braves’ rookies have played a big part thus far in their turnaround, and have worked their way to the top of the 2022 NL Rookie of the Year discussion.

As things stand now, pitcher Spencer Strider is the favorite to win 2022 NL Rookie of the year with +135 odds, while his teammate, center fielder Michael Harris ll, has the second-best odds at +240.

Strider Strikes

The Braves’ rotation has been one of the best in the MLB this season, posting a collective 3.66 ERA, which is seventh in the MLB. Strider has played a key part in the rotation’s success, carrying a 2.91 ERA in 80.1 innings pitched. His first 11 appearances came out of the bullpen where he carried a 2.22 ERA.

Since then, Strider has made 11 starts, going 4-2 in those games and pitching 56.0 innings while earning a 3.21 ERA. It’s par for the course that his ERA would see a spike after his workload saw an increase.

Even with the increase in ERA, Strider has been the Braves third-best pitcher behind Max Fried and Kyle Wright and that’s all the Braves can ask for. With the back end of the Braves starting rotation not performing like they did last season, Strider has played a critical role in keeping the Braves rotation upright.

He leads all rookie pitchers in strikeouts (120) and WAR (2.2), and if he keeps performing like he has been lately, he’ll be at the forefront of the 2022 NL Rookie of the Year discussion.

Harris Filling in Nicely

Since being called up from Double-A on May 28, Harris has exploded onto the scene and has been one of the Braves’ most consistent hitters. In 54 games since making his MLB debut, Harris is slashing .283/.317/.495 with 56 hits, 30 RBIs, nine home runs and 11 stolen bases.

With second baseman Ozzie Albies going down with a Jones fracture in mid-June, Harris has filled in the offensive void that was left by the Albies’ injury. Harris has yet to hit the infamous rookie wall, so it will be interesting to see how his production fares as the season goes on.

He’s come up huge for Braves offensively and came into the league known for his defense in the outfield, but it may be hard for him to catch Strider with the groove that he’s been on.

2022 NL Rookie of the Year Potential Competition

SImply put. No one. At least at this moment in time. Chicago Cubs right fielder Seiya Suzuki has the third-best odds to win the reward at +750, so he’ll have to continue to light it up like he has been lately. After showing out for the first month of the season, Suzuki hit a wall and his production took a dip.

However, he’s picked it up in the last 18 games, going 22-for-67 with eight RBIs, 22 hits, and four home runs. Suzuki has bounced back in a major way, but unless Strider or Harris fall off the face of the earth, it won’t be easy to garner enough votes for 2022 NL Rookie of the Year.

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