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Yes, it’s true, not everything Matt Olson does should be tied back to Freddie Freeman. However, I must admit it’s fun to torment Braves fans with the obvious comparison.
Freeman had a tremendous career in Atlanta before leaving for the Dodgers this offseason. By now, the saga has played out, you don’t need my synopsis of events.
But given how successful Freeman was in Braves colors, it’s impossible not to compare his replacement, Matt Olson, to him. Olson was acquired in a blockbuster trade from the Oakland Athletics this offseason. He then immediately signed a lucrative eight-year contract extension.
Olson’s slash line is down year over year, as he’s batting .246/.330/.484, but he’s also coming off a career-best season. He has 26 home runs and 83 RBIs on the campaign.
Braves: Matt Olson hits a ball into the Allegheny
For those who haven’t been to Pittsburgh’s PNC Park, I cannot recommend it enough. It’s one of the best ballparks in the country — if not the best. The only issue is it houses one of the worst teams in baseball, thanks to an owner who doesn’t invest resources in the club. But I digress.
Pittsburgh is an underrated city, and the ballpark sits on the riverbanks of the Allegheny just across from downtown. It makes for scenic views and, occasionally, a very rare baseball feat.
On Wednesday afternoon, Olson hit a ball on the fly into the river. While it happens a few times a year, it’s still a rarity, especially for opposing teams. Olson became the first Brave to ever hit a baseball into the Allegheny.
As Mark Bowman noted, no Brave, not even Freeman, has done that since PNC Park opened.
It’s just another example of Olson paving his own path in Atlanta.