Atlanta Braves Spring Training: Matt Olson Stepping Out of Freddie Freeman’s Shadow

As the Atlanta Braves proceed down the back half of spring training and prepare for the regular season, Matt Olson is increasing his stock with an impressive spring performance.

Matt Olson is tearing the cover off the baseball in nine games so far. He had a streaky season in his first year with the Braves, but ended with solid overall numbers. There is optimism that the slugger will be more comfortable in his second season in Atlanta. Olson appears to be cozying right up as he steps farther out of Freddie Freeman’s shadow.

This spring, Olson is batting .417 in 24 at-bats. He has 10 hits, two of which are doubles and three of which are homers. Olson is slugging a ridiculous .875.

I happened to be at CoolToday Park when the Braves faced the Yankees earlier this spring. Olson homered in his first at-bat and then later in the game he hit one just foul that left the park. His swing looks good and the sound of his bat is deafening.

Matt Olson had a Pretty Good 2022 for the Braves

If the expectation is for Olson to be even better, he did set a pretty high bar in 2022. His first season in a Braves’ uniform resulted in a 122 OPS+, which means his OPS was 22% better than league average. Olson hit .240 with 34 homers and 103 RBI.

What Should Braves Expect from Matt Olson in 2023?

Olson came to the Braves last offseason fresh off a campaign that resulted with him finishing eighth in the AL MVP race. He smashed 35 doubles and 39 homers en route to a .911 OPS (153 OPS+).

If Olson can settle back into MVP-caliber form in 2023, he has one of the best lineups in baseball surrounding him. He could very well drive in 120+ runs this season if he plays up to his capabilities.

What do you think Matt Olson’s numbers will look like at the end of the year? Let us know in the comments!

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