NL East 2023 Preview: Braves, Mets, Phillies, Marlins, Nationals

Two teams return off a 101-win season and the third is the reigning NL champ. With the Mets, Braves and Phillies, the NL East is loaded in 2023.

ATLANTA, GA - JULY 12: Francisco Lindor #12 of the New York Mets has a laugh with Ronald Acuna Jr. #13 of the Atlanta Braves during the third inning at Truist Park on July 12, 2022 in Atlanta, Georgia. (Photo by Todd Kirkland/Getty Images)

The National League East produced three playoff teams last season. Atop the division, the Mets and Braves tied with 101 wins apiece, with Atlanta taking the division crown thanks to a head-to-head division tiebreaker. Meanwhile the Phillies snuck into the playoffs as the final Wild Card team and then made their presence felt in October.

After sweeping the St. Louis Cardinals in the Wild Card round, the Phillies squared off against their division foe, the Atlanta Braves in the NLDS. Having earned a bye for winning the division, the Braves were the favorites to advance past the Phillies and make a run towards the World Series, but the opposite happened.

Led by Bryce Harper and a rotation of Zack Wheeler, Aaron Nola and Ranger Suarez, the Phillies won the NL pennant and came a few wins away from winning the World Series. Now with the addition of Trea Turner on a $300 million contract, the Phillies look to be an even bigger threat to the Mets and Braves in the NL East.

Still, this is a division that runs through Atlanta. The Braves have won the NL East in each of the last five seasons and they don’t look to be going anywhere any time soon. While they lost Dansby Swanson this offseason, they added Sean Murphy behind the dish and they will now enjoy a full season Rookie of the Year Michael Harris II in center field.

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Featuring one of the best bullpens in baseball, and a very deep starting rotation headlined by Max Fried and Spencer Strider, the Braves look every bit as good as they were in 2022. The same could be said however about the New York Mets.

Fresh off their second-best regular season in franchise history, the Mets revamped their rotation this offseason. After watching Jacob deGrom leave for Texas in free agency, the Mets quickly replaced their two-time Cy Young with a three-time Cy Young winner in Justin Verlander. They went on to sign Japanese star Kodai Senga, who brings over a pitch so nasty it was dubbed the “Ghost Fork”.

New York took a big blow during the World Baseball Classic when Edwin Diaz went down with a knee injury that could cost him his 2023 season. Free agent addition David Robertson will have to fill his shoes to keep the Mets afloat during the season, but there is enough talent in the rotation and bullpen for the Mets to overcome the setback.

Overall, it looks to be a three-team race in the NL East again, with the Miami Marlins attempting to win as well and make a push at a Wild Card. The Fish have one of the best young starting rotations in the game and are certainly improved offensively with batting champ Luis Arraez and free agent addition Jean Segura entering the fold.

The last team to mention will not receive much attention this season, with the Washington Nationals sitting at the beginning of what could be a lengthy rebuild.

For a full preview of the National League East this season, check out the Just Baseball Show. Also, linked below you will find written previews on each team in this division, from the Mets, Braves and Phillies, down to the Marlins and the rebuilding Nationals.

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Atlanta Braves – 2022 Record (101-61)

Written By: Leo Morgenstern

With full seasons from Ozzie Albies, Spencer Strider, and Michael Harris II, the Braves could be even more dangerous in 2023.

New York Mets – 2022 Record (101-61)

Written By: Ryan Finkelstein

The New York Mets enter the 2023 with a star-studded roster and lofty expectations, as owner Steve Cohen continues to go all-in to win now.

Philadelphia Phillies – 2022 Record (87-75)

Written By: Leo Morgenstern

How can the Phillies follow up a pennant-winning season? By signing a new superstar and shooting for the World Series.

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Miami Marlins – 2022 Record (69-93)

Written By: Aram Leighton

While they may not have spent like the top of their division, the Marlins were active this offseason in hopes of being competitive in 2023

Washington Nationals – 2022 Record (57-105)

Written By: Spencer Tracy

With one of the weakest rosters in baseball, the Washington Nationals are squarely in a rebuild and could lose over 100 games again in 2023.