Braves clinch 5th straight NL East title

Megan Briggs / Getty Images Sport / Getty

The reigning champs are back on top.

For the fifth straight year, the Atlanta Braves are the National League East champions and will attempt to defend their 2021 World Series crown after clinching a first-round bye with the NL's second-best record.

Atlanta's 2-1 victory over the Miami Marlins on Tuesday marked its 101st of the campaign, which trails only the Los Angeles Dodgers in the Senior Circuit.

The decisive win belongs to Jake Odorizzi, who allowed one run on two hits and one walk while striking out seven over five innings. The right-hander was acquired prior to the trade deadline from the Houston Astros for left-handed reliever Will Smith.

Kenley Jansen recorded his 41st save, coming one strike away from an immaculate inning but ultimately getting Jordan Groshans to fly out on the eighth pitch of the at-bat. It was also Jansen's 391st career save, surpassing Dennis Eckersley for eighth overall.

Atlanta stormed back to overtake the New York Mets for the division crown after trailing by as many as 10 1/2 games at the beginning of June. The Braves swept their storied NL East rivals over the weekend in a key three-game set that ultimately paved the way for the first-round bye.

"The Mets didn't blow it, we took it from them," Braves reliever A.J. Minter said, according to David O'Brien of The Athletic. "We just played out of our minds."

The Braves will have home-field advantage in the NLDS. They'll face the winner of a three-game wild-card series played Oct. 7-9 at Busch Stadium between the St. Louis Cardinals and Philadelphia Phillies.

Braves clinch 5th straight NL East title
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