Braves clinch 5th straight NL East title with 2-1 win over Marlins
ATLANTA, Ga. (Atlanta News First/AP) - The Atlanta Braves clinched their fifth consecutive NL East title Tuesday night by defeating the Miami Marlins 2-1. Atlanta earned a first-round bye as the No. 2 seed in the NL playoffs, behind the Los Angeles Dodgers.
The World Series champions needed just one more win to complete a most stunning turnaround.
They earned it Tuesday night, beating the Miami Marlins 2-1 to take their fifth straight NL East title and finish the first leg of a trek they hope leads them to another crown.
Afterward, they popped Champagne and puffed cigars, basking in their accomplishment.
“It’s hard to win one,” manager Brian Snitker said. “To win five is pretty special. It’s a credit to our organization.”
William Contreras drove in the go-ahead run with an infield single in the fifth, and the Atlanta pitching staff turned in a solid performance.
Their sluggish start is now far behind them. The Braves were 10 1/2 games behind the New York Mets at the start of June and lost four of five to New York in early August. But they were in familiar territory. Atlanta was 30-35 at one point last season before winning the World Series.
“To keep plugging along and the consistency that these guys showed throughout the whole year,” Snitker said. “Coming to work every day and worrying about today. They didn’t get caught up that we were behind.”
The Braves swept the Mets over the weekend to take the division lead and entered the Marlins series needing a win or a Mets loss to clinch the division crown.
The Mets swept the Washington Nationals in Tuesday’s doubleheader but had to settle for a wild-card spot.
The Braves, one year after winning their first World Series title since 1995, are now playoff-bound.
Atlanta also has 100 wins for the first time since 2003, which is more games than every team in the majors other than Freddie Freeman and his LA Dodgers since June 1.
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