Austin Riley’s Hot Start In Atlanta

May 15, 2019; Atlanta, GA, USA; Atlanta Braves left fielder Austin Riley (27) hits a solo home run in the fourth inning against the St. Louis Cardinals at SunTrust Park. Mandatory Credit: Jason Getz-USA TODAY Sports

Austin Riley has been a top prospect for the Atlanta Braves for a couple of years now. He was drafted in 2015 with the 41st overall pick. He started with the Gulf Coast Braves but was quickly promoted to the Mississippi Braves. He dominated there and got promoted to the Gwinnett Stripers in May of last year. He started the 2019 season in Gwinnett on fire. In the first 37 games of the year, Riley’s batting average was at .299. He had already hit 15 home runs with an OPS of 1.057. Fans were starting to question why he hadn’t been called up yet. The answer was simple, Riley plays 3rd base, and Atlanta has former MVP, Josh Donaldson, in the hot corner. Riley eventually got his time as he was called up to Atlanta on May 15 to play left field due to Ender Inciarte being put on the injured list.

Austin Riley’s first career game was a home game against the St. Louis Cardinals. It didn’t take long for Riley to continue his dominance. After striking out his first at bat, Riley hit a 438 foot bomb to left-center field. Since, he has played four more games for Atlanta. He has had a total of 19 at bats. He has 8 hits, 2 of them being home runs, for a batting average of .421 and an OPS of 1.211. Riley has also scored 4 runs and knocked in 4 runs. Riley even has an Atlanta Braves record for the most hits in a players first four games with 8 hits. If Atlanta keeps him up, Riley could ride this wave until the end of the year. The Atlanta Braves could be looking at back-to-back rookie of the years.

Leave a Reply