The National League East is a chaotic division.
It has been full of twists and turns this MLB season, and it feels like the plot is far from over.
Right now, three teams have legitimate hopes of claiming the division crown, and it’s anyone’s guess as to which club is going to come away with it.
With the way things are angling, we could be in for a thrilling Day 162.
The Philadelphia Phillies are currently in first place with the Atlanta Braves one game back and the New York Mets two games back. Candidly, every team in the division is mediocre, but the playoff bid has to go to someone.
Let’s take a look at where things stand for each team.
Breaking Down The Phillies’ Chances
Everything seems to be going the Phillies’ way right now.
They’re in the midst of arguably their best stretch of the season, as they’ve won eight of their last nine games.
Bryce Harper is playing some of the best baseball of his career.
Over his last 32 games, he is batting .355 with a 1.158 OPS.
He has homered seven times and doubled 16 times during the span.
The 28-year-old looks like a legitimate MVP candidate.
Rhys Hoskins is another player who is on a tear.
He’s batting .329 with a 1.195 OPS over his last 25 games.
Then there’s J.T. Realmuto, who has a .414 average and 1.176 OPS over his last seven games.
The hot bats don’t stop there—Philly’s lineup is loaded with guys who are crushing the ball lately.
Thing is, the current rate might not be sustainable.
When the Phillies finally come back down to Earth, that’s when we’ll learn if they’re really built to win the division.
Breaking Down The Braves’ Chances
The Braves seemed dead in the water after superstar Ronald Acuna Jr. was lost for the season to an ACL injury.
Even Braves fans dismissed the team’s chances of hanging around in the playoff picture.
But as the summer months come to an end, Atlanta is miraculously still alive.
PHILLIES LOSE. THE BRAVES ARE ONE GAME BACK IN THE NL EAST.
— Braves Stañ Page (@BravesStanPage) August 11, 2021
The Braves’ elite rotation has kept them afloat all year long.
It’s easy to win ballgames when your starting pitching keeps you in virtually every contest.
If Atlanta sneaks into the MLB playoffs, it will be one of the best stories of the season.
The team could go far with its elite pitching staff.
Breaking Down The Mets’ Chances
The Mets are flirting with an epic collapse.
This Mets collapse is all too familiar
— Joe Beamer (@TheJoeBeamer) August 8, 2021
The division was theirs to lose all summer long, and it looks like they’re doing just that—losing it.
New York had a 4.5-game lead right around the MLB trade deadline.
The team is now in third place behind the Phillies and Braves.
Needless to say, things have changed in a hurry.
If the Mets want to stay alive in the race, they’re going to have to turn things around quickly.
Unfortunately, things aren’t going to get any easier.
New York has the toughest remaining schedule in all of baseball.
The club really needs to get healthy in time to deal with the daunting remaining slate.