Yet, some are still discounting Atlanta's success because it's so early in the season. They seem to think that the Braves are on a hot streak, which they undoubtedly are, and that the results will eventually even themselves out. One individual who seems to think this is Nationals pitcher Steven Strasburg, who was Washington's starting pitcher in its Saturday loss to the Braves.
Following the series, Strasburg said, “They’re hot right now. It’s early and it’s not about how many wins you necessarily finish up with in April, it’s how many you have at the end of the year.”
In a way, Strasburg is right. The only standings that ultimately matter are the ones at the end of the season. However, those standings are created based on the team's play over the course of 162 games. These games in April are worth just as much in the standings are the ones in June and July.
If the Braves can continue to build a lead in the standings, it will help take the pressure off this young team and force the Nationals and Phillies to play catch up.
In the 2011 season, the Braves trailed the Phillies by 3.5 games on April 16 and the Phillies went on to win the division. Last season, the Braves trailed the Nationals by 2.5 games on April 16 and the Nationals went on to win the division. Now, Atlanta is the team leading on April 16. Let's hope the recent trend continues.
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