The Atlanta Braves were founded in 1871 as the Boston Red Stockings and after going through numerous name changes landed on the Braves in 1953 before moving to Atlanta in 1966. They have been a successful franchise for the most part, claiming 17 National League pennants but they have only been able to convert that into 3 World Series titles. Their first came in 1914 but they had to wait until 1957 for a second. It was another long wait, until 1995, for their third and most recent title. In the 90's the Braves were the dominant force in the National League. Claiming 6 pennants from '91-'99 and they won the NL East division every year from 1995-2005, a remarkable run of dominance.
Since that run ended the Braves have drifted down the standings, winning the division just twice and failing to get beyond the NLDS each time. However, in 2018 they put together a strong season, fueled by remarkable young talent and reliable veterans they won 90 games and took the NL East. They are lining up for another run at the World Series. Can you help guide a talented roster to the playoffs and beyond?
*All stats correct at time of writing
MLB The Show 19 doesn't give teams an OVR rating like other sports games, instead they get a ranking from 1st to 30th, and then sub-rankings for different aspects of the game. This is useful to see how one team measures up compared to the league but it can be tough to gauge the gap between teams with this method.
The Atlanta Braves come into Franchise Mode ranked 10th overall, a solid position to be in. They have excellent defense (2nd) and contact (3rd) but do lack a little in overall speed (18th) and pitching talent (17th).
One area the Braves also lack a little is in team budget. With $136.5 million available it doesn't seem like a worry but there are some big contracts that eat into that budget and young players that will eventually need paying so you will need to strike a careful financial balance. Who are the stars you can build around in Atlanta?
Ronald Acuna Jr, Left Fielder (91 OVR)
Contract: 1 year/$575k + 2 years pre-arbitration + 3 years arbitration
Secondary Position: CF, RF
Hitter Tendency: Whole Field
Best Stats: Speed (88), Clutch (86), Contact vs L (82), Power vs L (81), Contact vs R (80), Power vs R (76), Reaction (74)
Ronald Acuna Jr joined the Atlanta Braves as an international free agent in 2014 and got his MLB debut with the Braves in 2018, playing 111 games and lighting up the diamond. He hit 26 homers, stole 16 bases, finished the year with a .293/.366/.552 slash line and solid defense as he ran away with NL Rookie of the Year honors.
In The Show 19 Acuna is a truly exciting young player. He has the speed (88) and contact skill (80/82) to be a menace at the plate and on the basepaths, but the addition of his power (76/81) and ability in the clutch (86) means he has future MVP written all over him.
Freddie Freeman, First Base (90 OVR)
Contract: 3 years/$50.7 million
Secondary Position: 3B
Hitter Tendency: Extreme Pull
Best Stats: Durability (99), Clutch (93), Contact vs R (89), Discipline (88), Contact vs L (83), Fielding (78), Arm Accuracy (78)
Freddie Freeman was a second-round pick for the Braves in 2007 and got his MLB debut in a brief stint in 2010. In 2011 he was the Braves every-day first baseman and hit .282 with 21 homers and came runner-up in Rookie of the Year voting. Since then Freeman has gone one to be a three-time All-Star, receive MVP consideration in several seasons and even claim the 2018 gold glove at first base. He has added a bit more power to his game and become a regular .300+ hitter.
In The Show 19 Freddie Freeman is an excellent hitter. He has elite contact skill (89/83) and solid power (73/68) along with good discipline (88) to generate walks. He's good with the glove (78) and has the durability (99) and clutch (93) to be there when you need him the most.
Mike Foltynewicz, Starting Pitcher (82 OVR)
Contract: 1 year/$5.5 million + 2 years arbitration
Pitches: 4-Seam Fastball, Slider, 2-Seam Fastball, Curveball, Changeup
Best Stats: Velocity (95), Break (94), Stamina (82), Arm Strength (74), K/9 (69), H/9 (68)
Mike Foltynewicz was a first-round pick for the Houston Astros in 2010 and got his MLB debut with them in 2014, throwing 18.2 innings out of the bullpen with a poor 5.30 ERA. In January 2015 he was part of a trade that took Evan Gattis to Houston and after a few starts in Triple-A the Braves called him up into the rotation. Since then the righty has gone from strength to strength. In 2018 he had his first All-Star appearance along with his first 30+ start season, a 2.85 ERA and 202 strikeouts.
In The Show 19 Mike Foltynewicz is the Braves best starter. The righty has the combination of elite velocity (95) and break (94) that can make him deadly, though his control (64) is a worry when it comes to missing locations and hanging some balls over the heart of the plate. He has the stamina (82) to go deep in games though, and that is always nice.
Atlanta Braves MLB Roster
There can be some small fluctuations in OVR in The Show 19 from save to save, however the underlying stats are always consistent and that is the most important thing. We'll start our look at the Braves MLB roster with the position players and then look at the starting rotation and bullpen.
|Player||OVR||Age||Position||Bat Hand||Best Contact||Best Power||Fielding||Speed|
|Ronald Acuna Jr||91||21||LF||R||82 (L)||81 (L)||62||88|
|Freddie Freeman||90||29||1B||L||89 (R)||73 (R)||78||43|
|Josh Donaldson||89||33||3B||R||74 (L)||89 (L)||71||23|
|Ozzie Albies||83||22||2B||S||88 (L)||60 (L)||77||75|
|Ender Inciarte||83||28||CF||L||80 (L)||39 (R)||79||62|
|Nick Markakis||79||35||RF||L||85 (R)||50 (R)||61||39|
|Tyler Flowers||79||33||C||R||73 (L)||56 (L)||81||21|
|Adam Duvall||78||30||LF||R||50 (L)||69 (L)||85||64|
|Johan Camargo||76||25||3B||S||84 (L)||65 (L)||74||37|
|Brian McCann||76||35||C||L||49 (R)||66 (R)||65||1|
|Dansby Swanson||72||25||SS||R||57 (R)||47 (L)||74||86|
|Charlie Culberson||69||29||SS||R||61 (L)||54 (R)||67||70|
|Raffy Lopez||66||31||C||L||34 (L)||54 (R)||69||14|
The Braves MLB roster has 13 position players and 12 pitchers. That's your 8-man starting lineup, a 5-man bench, a 5-man rotation, and a 7-man bullpen which includes your closer.
The Braves offense is fueled by the talent of Freddie Freeman (contact R 89, discipline 88) and the young stars Ronald Acuna (clutch 86, contact L 82) and Ozzie Albies (contact L 88, vision 76). This trio is supported by former AL MVP Josh Donaldson (power vs L 89, power vs R 84) and outfielders Ender Inciarte (vision 86, contact L 80) and Nick Markakis (vision 86, contact R 85) as well as catcher Tyler Flowers (contact L 73, discipline 72) and infielders Johan Camargo (clutch 88, contact L 84) and Dansby Swanson (speed 86, contact R 57).
The Braves glove work is strong, with Adam Duvall (fielding 85, arm accuracy 85) being an excellent defensive option in the outfield while Inciarte (arm accuracy 84, reaction 83) and Albies (fielding 77, arm accuracy 74) can generate outs.
On the mound the Braves aren't as strong, but they can still get it done. Mike Foltynewicz (velocity 95, break 94) is the best starter on the team, though he is more of a #2 than he is an ace. Julio Teheran (break 94, stamina 86), Kevin Gausman (break 84, stamina 84), and Sean Newcomb (break 92, stamina 77) make up the 2-4 spots while Max Fried (K/9 79, velocity 66) currently takes the #5 spot but is the most replaceable part of the entire roster.
The bullpen is relatively strong though, with closer Daniel Winkler (break 86, K/9 85) and setup men Darren O'Day (break 99, K/9 91) and AJ Minter (velocity 92, K/9 86) capable of closing out the last few innings consistently. O'Day starts the 2019 season aged 36 so finding a replacement for him will need to happen sooner rather than later. Shane Carle (HR/9 85, velocity 77), Jonny Venters (velocity 91, HR/9 89), Arodys Vizcaino (break 99, velocity 99), and Jesse Biddle (break 97, velocity 82) make up the rest of the bullpen.
MLB The Show 19 has four lineups for you to set. These are against right-handed starters with and without the DH and against left-handed starters with and without the DH. As the Braves are in the National League you will be using the lineups without the DH for most of your games.
The Show 19 gives you CF Ender Inciarte in the leadoff spot against righties. With RF Nick Markakis and 1B Freddie Freeman. Next comes 3B Josh Donaldson, LF Ronald Acuna, SS Johan Camargo, 2B Ozzie Albies, C Tyler Flowers and then the pitcher spot. The only change against lefties is to promote Albies to #6 above Camargo. With the DH Camargo is taken out of the field for SS Charlie Culberson who will hit 9th.
These lineups are pretty solid, but you can certainly do better.
The major change in the RHP lineup is to promote Ronald Acuna to the lead-off spot to take advantage of his strong contact, power, & speed. Ender Inciarte is moved to #5 and we have pushed Ozzie Albies up to #6 too. Johan Camargo will still take the DH spot but Dansby Swanson will come into the shortstop position for those games rather than Charlie Culberson.
Against lefties we have put Ozzie Albies in the lead-off spot to put his terrific contact vs lefties to good use. Ender Inciarte is second, while Freeman & Donaldson stay in the 3 & 4 spots. Acuna is at #5 and Adam Duvall comes into the lineup against lefties just to ensure some automatic rotation for our outfielders so they don't get worn out. The bottom three in the lineup are the same as they are against righties.
The farm system in MLB The Show 19 can be inconsistent. The fluctuations in OVR and potential can change an exciting prospect into a disappointing one and there is a lack of some real life prospects meaning you can't just pull up a prospects list and pick out your favorite scouts top players. However, there are still some intriguing prospects in every farm system. Who are the key ones in Atlanta's minor league teams?
Melvin Rodriguez, Center Fielder (74 OVR)
Secondary Positions: LF, RF
Hitter Tendency: Whole Field
Best Stats: Speed (84), Baserunning Aggressiveness (82), Stealing (79), Reaction (75), Contact vs L (68), Arm Strength (68)
Melvin Rodriguez is a very solid outfield prospect with the speed (84) and reaction (75) to hold his own in the field and do damage on the basepaths. His solid contact against lefties (68) is a solid MLB-ready stat too. He lacks the ideal plate discipline (45) to be consistent with the bat, but at 21 he has time ahead of him to improve and be an eventual replacement for Nick Markakis in the outfield rotation.
Luiz Gohara, Starting Pitcher (68 OVR)
Pitches: 4-Seam Fastball, Slider, Changeup, 2-Seam Fastball
Best Stats: Velocity (83), Stamina (76), HR/9 (63), BB/9 (60), K/9 (58), Break (56)
Luiz Gohara joined the Braves as an international free agent in 2012. He got his MLB debut in 2017, starting 5 games with a 4.91 ERA. He appeared in 9 games in 2018 with 1 start and a poor 5.95 ERA.
In The Show 19 Gohara has MLB-ready velocity (83) and stamina (76), but he lacks the control (50) and break (56) to put it all together in the Majors just yet. While the Braves need a boost to their rotation you should hold off on promoting Gohara until he can get his slider over the plate with enough break to create strikeouts.
Touki Toussaint, Starting Pitcher (65 OVR)
Pitches: 4-Seam Fastball, 12-6 Curve, Changeup, 2-Seam Fastball
Touki Toussaint was a first-round pick for the Arizona Diamondbacks in 2014 and came over to the Atlanta Braves in 2015 in a trade. He got his MLB debut in 2018, making 5 starts with a 3.33 ERA and 29 strikeouts in 27 innings.
In The Show 19 Toussaint is a good prospect. He has good velocity (83) and stamina (74), but like Gohara he lacks the control (50) and break (58) to be consistent in the Majors just yet. However he is another one to keep an eye on over your first season as he could soon push himself into consideration for more than just a September call-up.