Although Freddie Freeman’s JMV caliber production and Matt Kemp’s arrival last August are important factors for the Braves, the Atlanta team knows that the successes of their offensive attack at the end of last year had to do with the contributions of the Venezuelan Ender Inciarte.
On Tuesday, Inciarte was a catalyst for the Braves ‘offense by securing their first game of the season with three hits in the Braves’ win over the Mets at SunTrust Park. The ranger gained a Golden Glove provided a double pusher and a single producer of two scores.
“If he hits, we hit,” Freeman said of Inciarte. “He’s given good swings, the last 25 or 30 shifts. I do not know what he’s given, but he seems to have been in tune.
If he’s in tune, we’re going to score races. “The Braves have averaged 9.2 runs per game by winning five of their last seven games. In that time, Inciarte hit .375 with a base percentage of .429. During a six-game losing streak just before that stretch, the Venezuelan grounded only twice in 25 plate visits. In that period, Atlanta scored a total of 15 laps.
That trend goes back to last year, when Inciarte went on the bat after the All-Star Game and clinched the first bat in Atlanta. As such, it gave them opportunities to push careers to Freeman, Kemp and Nick Markakis.
Since Inciarte became the first Braves bat on Aug. 5, he has hit .305 with a .359 base percentage. Since then, Atlanta has been 40-38.