The Atlanta Braves clinched the NL East on Tuesday night by beating the Marlins, completing a wild comeback in the division to top the Mets.
The reigning World Series champion Atlanta Braves already knew they were going back to the MLB Playoffs to defend their crown — but now they’ll do so as NL East champions after a gritty 2-1 victory over the Miami Marlins on Tuesday night.
Coming into play on Monday after sweeping the previously division-leading New York Mets over the weekend, the Braves magic number sat at just one, meaning they needed only a New York loss or a win of their own to clinch the division. They failed to get either on Monday but Tuesday proved to be a different story.
Almost fittingly, it was oft-maligned closer Kenley Jansen who came on in the bottom of the ninth and got the final three outs to secure the win and bring the division title back to Truist Park (and give Atlanta a bye in the first round of the postseason). And they did so in truly incredible fashion given the uphill climb they faced.
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The Mets were up 10.5 games at one point in the division and failed to secure the NL East. Naturally, as Braves fans celebrated on social media, there was no shortage of shots being taken at New York too.
Some will argue that the Mets choked but, outside of the final series between the two rivals, that’s not the case really. This is all a credit to the Braves, who played at a 114-win pace in the second half of the season to overcome a 10.5-game deficit in the division and take the NL East again.
But now the champs have an easier road back to the World Series as they’ll face the winner of the Padres-Phillies series that will start in the NLDS on Tuesday, Oct. 11.
The Mets are now a wild card team.