MLB Season Preview For NL East, 2023

MLB Season Preview For NL East, 2023
Mon 20th March 2023

We simply cannot wait for the new MLB season to start, and we are counting down the days until the very first pitch. If you are like us and love the MLB, then you definitely need to have a read on below, as we take a look at each and every team from the NL East and analyze their chances for success in this brand new season.

Atlanta Braves

The 2022 edition of the Atlanta Braves failed to defend their 2021 World Series title but returns a loaded lineup this season that could reign supreme again. The Braves clinched their fifth straight NL East crown last year but lost to the Philadelphia Phillies in the Division Series.

Third baseman Austin Riley headlines a talented batting lineup. The soon-to-be 26-year-old slugger batted .273 with 38 home runs and 93 RBIs, while first baseman Matt Olson clubbed 34 long balls and led the team in doubles (44) and RBIs (103). 

Stud outfielder Ronald Acuna Jr. hit 15 homers in just 119 games, and Marcell Ozuna (23), Michael Harris (19), and Travis d’Arnaud (18) combined for 60 dingers. Second baseman Ozzie Albies, outfielder Eddie Rosario, and second-year shortstop Vaughn Grissom round out an impressive offensive unit. 

Kyle Wright and Max Fried anchor a solid pitching rotation. Wright posted a 21-5 record with a 3.19 ERA and 174 strikeouts, while Fried went 14-7 with a 2.48 ERA and struck out 170 batters. Spencer Strider enjoyed a breakout campaign while compiling an 11-5 card with a 2.67 ERA and 202 strikeouts in just 131.2 innings. Charlie Morton (9-6, 4.34) and Ian Anderson (10-6, 5.00) will form the back end of the starting rotation. 

Atlanta is the class of the division despite the emergence of both the Phillies and New York Mets in 2022. The Braves will win their sixth consecutive NL East crown and are the favorites to win their second World Series championship in three seasons.

Miami Marlins

The new-look Miami Marlins hope to make some noise in 2023 after several key players missed significant time last season. The Marlins finished fourth in the division last year and have advanced to the playoffs just once since winning the World Series in 2003.

Jazz Chisholm Jr. will anchor a batting lineup that is oozing with potential. The speedster hit 14 homers and will move to center field in 2022. Bryan De La Cruz batted .252 with 20 doubles and 13 long balls, and has the inside track on the starting gig in left field. 

First baseman Garrett Cooper hit .261 with a team-high 33 two-baggers, while Joey Wendle takes over at shortstop. The Marlins traded for AL batting champion Luis Arraez and signed free agents Jean Segura and Yuli Gurriel.

Reigning NL Cy Young Award winner Sandy Alcantara headlines a solid starting rotation. Alcantara compiled a 14-9 record with a 2.28 ERA and 207 strikeouts over 228.2 innings. Left-handers Jesus Luzardo (4-7, 3.32) and Trevor Rogers (4-11, 5.47) will join free-agent righty Johnny Cueto in the rotation. 

Cueto posted an 8-10 card with a 3.35 ERA and 102 strikeouts with the Chicago White Sox. Edward Cabrera showcased frontline-starter stuff by going 6-4 with a 3.01 ERA and 75 strikeouts in just 71.2 frames. Miami should improve on last year’s 69-win season but will be hard-pressed to earn a playoff spot in one of the toughest divisions in baseball.

New York Mets

The New York Mets led the NL East for most of the 2022 season before faltering and failing to win their seventh division title in franchise history. The Mets finished second and lost to the San Diego Padres in the Wild Card Series.

First baseman Pete Alonso smashed 40 home runs and tallied a career-high 131 RBIs, while shortstop Francisco Lindor collected 26 homers, 107 RBIs, and 16 stolen bases. Second baseman Jeff McNeil batted .326 to capture the NL Batting title and led the team with 174 hits and 39 doubles. 

Third baseman Eduardo Escobar ripped 20 long balls, while Brandon Nimmo and Starling Marte each added 16 dingers. Other notable hitters include Mark Canha, Dan Vogelbach, and Omar Narvaez.

A pair of future Hall of Fame hurlers Justin Verlander and Max Scherzer headlines a talented starting rotation. Verlander signed a 2-year, $86.7 million contract after earning the AL Cy Young Award and leading the Houston Astros to the 2022 World Series championship. The 40-year-old posted an 18–4 record, 1.75 ERA, and 185 strikeouts in 175 innings. 

Scherzer went 11-5 with a 2.29 ERA and fanned a team-high 173 batters, while Carlos Carrasco compiled a 15-7 mark and a 3.97 ERA. Japanese right-hander Kodai Senga inked a five-year deal and went 11-6 with a career-best 1.94 ERA for the SoftBank Hawks, and closer Edwin Diaz notched 32 saves.

The Mets and their record-breaking $355 million payroll will challenge the Atlanta Braves for NL East supremacy this season. New York has the talent to win the division if Verlander and Scherzer remain healthy, but another playoff appearance is definitely in the cards this season.

Philadelphia Phillies

The surprising 2022 Philadelphia Phillies barely qualified for the playoffs before catching fire and reaching their first World Series since 2009. The Phillies finished third in the division to advance to the postseason for the first time in 11 years.

Reigning NLCS MVP Bryce Harper will miss the first 4-5 months of the season recovering from off-season Tommy John surgery. Still, the Phillies added free-agent Trea Turner to a potent offensive lineup. The shortstop batted .298 with 21 home runs, 100 RBIs, 39 doubles, and 27 stolen bases in 2022. 

Outfielder Kyle Schwarber finished second in the majors with 46 homers, drove in a team-high 94 runs, and first baseman Rhys Hoskins clubbed 30 long balls. Other notable hitters include J.T. Realmuto and Nick Castellanos.

The Phillies have a pair of staff aces in Aaron Nola and Zack Wheeler. Nola was fourth in the league with 235 strikeouts and posted an 11-13 record with a 3.25 ERA in 205 innings. Wheeler went 12-7 and struck out 163 batters while finishing with a 2.82 ERA, and southpaw Ranger Suarez compiled a 10-7 card with 129 strikeouts and a 3.65 ERA. 

Free-agent pitcher Taijuan Walker went 12-5 with a 3.49 ERA and 132 strikeouts for the New York Mets last season. Relievers Craig Kimbrel, Gregory Soto, and Matt Strahm were added to a bullpen that features hard-throwing Seranthony Domínguez and Jose Alvarado. Philadelphia remains the third-best squad in a loaded NL East but possesses enough firepower on offense to return to the postseason for the second straight season.

Washington Nationals

The Washington Nationals ended the 2022 season with the worst record in the majors and featured an underwhelming offensive lineup and an even worse pitching corp. The Nationals finished in the division’s cellar and missed the playoffs for the third straight year.

First baseman Joey Meneses batted .324 with 13 home runs in 56 games as a 30-year-old rookie. Left fielder Lane Thomas smacked 17 homers and drove home 52 runs, while catcher Keibert Ruiz collected 22 doubles and seven long balls. 

Outfielder Victor Robles led the team with 15 stolen bases, and former top prospect CJ Abrams will be at shortstop. The Nationals added free-agent hitters Corey Dickerson, Dominic Smith, and Jeimer Candelario. 

Right-hander Josiah Gray is the staff ace for an unimposing starting rotation. The 25-year-old posted a 7-10 record and a 5.02 ERA with 154 strikeouts over 148.2 innings. Southpaw Patrick Corbin went 6-19 with a horrendous 6.31 ERA, while Cade Cavalli surrendered six hits and seven earned runs in his lone start last season. 

Trevor Williams went 3-5 with a 3.21 ERA for the New York Mets, and Mackenzie Gore compiled a 4-4 card and a 4.50 ERA in 13 starts with the San Diego Padres. Washington needs more talent to be competitive and will once again contend for the worst record in the majors in 2023. 

When the 2023 MLB season does eventually begin, make sure SportsTips is your go-to destination for MLB picks. We will provide MLB picks for each and every game of the season from our experts, so you can place your bets with more confidence!

Marvin is a self-confessed sports fanatic who is addicted to the NFL, MLB and CFB. He has a passion for Daily Fantasy Sports and absolutely loves gambling and making money on his favorite sports. He has been an avid Dallas Cowboys fan since the 1970s and has been writing about sports for more than three decades. Whether he is making prop bets or choosing which teams will cover spreads, he is thrilled to provide relevant information for all of our readers.