New York Mets vs Atlanta Braves: 5 bold predictions for series of the weekend

Sep 23, 2022; Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA; Atlanta Braves infielder Vaughn Grissom (18) reacts after striking out against the Philadelphia Phillies in the fourth inning at Citizens Bank Park. Mets Mandatory Credit: Kyle Ross-USA TODAY Sports

The New York Mets and Atlanta Braves meet this weekend for a three-game series in Atlanta that could well determine the winner of the National League East.

With rain not expected to make an impact on the series after a change in the path of Hurricane Ian, the Atlanta Braves and New York Mets will meet at Truist Park beginning on Friday night in the final regular-season meeting between the two rivals.

New York enters Thursday with an off day after posting a walk-off win on Wednesday night over the Miami Marlins that gave the Mets a one-game lead over the Braves, who fell to the Washington Nationals in walk-off fashion on Wednesday night and also have an off day on Thursday.

So far this season, the Mets have a 9-7 season edge over the Braves, meaning one more win gives them the head-to-head tiebreaker should the teams end the season deadlocked in the standings.

As a reminder, winning the East matters in a big way for both teams. The division winner will be the second seed in the upcoming NL postseason and will enjoy some days off before the NLCS begins on Tuesday, October 11. The team that doesn’t win the NL East will be forced into the Wild Card round, hosting a best-of-three series beginning on Friday, October 7.

First, Atlanta’s Vaughn Grissom will break out of his recent funk

The rookie second baseman has slashed just .143/.200/.143 over his last 14 at-bats, so he is in a dry spell at the plate. However, Grissom has played very well against the Mets overall this season, slashing .429/.467/.500 in 14 at-bats.

With Ozzie Albies out, Grissom has stepped up at second base since his debut on August 10, part of the rookie resurgence that includes starting pitcher Spencer Strider and outfielder Michael Harris II and has pushed the Braves along this season. Look for Grissom to step up against the Mets as he has done all season, and break free of what has been holding him back at the plate in recent games.

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