As the month of August started for the Atlanta Braves, they were in first place and things were going pretty well. There were a few issues with the pitching staff that made it difficult to gauge their ability to go deep into the playoffs. Here and there an issue would pop up but things were good for them before they started going wrong. The first big blow was the broken ankle that Tim Hudson suffered and it has snowballed from there. Adversity has gotten worse and the team has gotten better.
When Hudson went down it was bad news but it led to the pitching staff coming together. Kris Medlen has redeemed himself since that time and is now once again a fixture in the starting rotation. Rookie Alex Wood has come on the scene with a vicious ability to shut down seemingly anyone and Brandon Beachy successfully returned from the disabled list. That wasn’t all there was to the Braves adversity of course.
Since then there have been a few more guys lost for the season, Beachy is on the disabled list with elbow inflammation and Jason Heyward has a broken jaw. What was the devastating result to the team? Their magic number is down to 18, they’re the first team in MLB to reach 80 wins and they seem more difficult to beat than ever. Right now they are at home and that certainly is a factor but there seems to be toughness to the team now that wasn’t present before.
With the loss of Heyward for the rest of the season and the team uncertain if he will join them for the playoffs, players have stepped up everywhere. The pitching staff has once again found the ability to shut down anyone, including previously shaky Paul Maholm. As a whole this team is coming together as well as any other team in the game. The fact that they can go through what they have and remain the team with one of the best; much less the best records in MLB is something every other team should take notice of.