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10 games that defined Atlanta's 2018 season

September 22, 2018

ATLANTA -- Braves fans will forever remember 2018 as the year during which they were introduced to Ronald Acuna Jr.'s tremendous talents and provided the chance to celebrate an unexpected division title. A highly talented group led by Freddie Freeman overachieved and proved they were indeed capable of winning the

ATLANTA -- Braves fans will forever remember 2018 as the year during which they were introduced to Ronald Acuna Jr.'s tremendous talents and provided the chance to celebrate an unexpected division title. A highly talented group led by Freddie Freeman overachieved and proved they were indeed capable of winning the National League East at least one year earlier than many expected.
Here's a look back at the top 10 moments that put the Braves in position to celebrate the division title that was clinched with Saturday afternoon's 5-3 win over the Phillies at SunTrust Park.
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• Braves 8, Phillies 5 on March 29: The Braves fell behind 5-0 in the sixth inning of their Opening Day matchup against the Phillies and then completed a stirring comeback with Nick Markakis' walk-off home run.

• Braves 4, Mets 3 on April 21: After Julio Teheran matched Jacob deGrom over seven scoreless innings, the Braves tallied a pair of eighth-inning runs and then added two more during a ninth-inning comeback capped by Ender Inciarte's walk-off bunt.

• Braves 7, Reds 4 on April 26: Acuna made his much-anticipated Major League debut on April 25 and then experienced the thrill of hitting his first career home run during the following afternoon's series finale in Cincinnati.

• Braves 10, Marlins 9 on May 20: This season's most impressive comeback was completed when Dansby Swanson capped a six-run ninth inning with a walk-off single that gave the Braves a 10-9 win over the Marlins.

• Braves 4, Mets 3 on May 28:Charlie Culberson added to his impressive list of walk-off home runs when he erased a two-run ninth-inning deficit during the first game of a doubleheader against the Mets. It was his eighth career homer, the fourth to end a game.

• Braves 5, Yankees 3 on July 2: Playing at Yankee Stadium for the first time, Acuna hit a game-winning two-run homer in the 11th inning. He was playing in just his fourth game since returning from a month-long stint on the disabled list.

• Braves 4, Dodgers 1 on July 29: Producing his best start of the season on the same day that Chipper Jones was inducted into baseball's Hall of Fame, Sean Newcomb came within a strike of no-hitting the Dodgers. His strong effort led the Braves to the first of 14 wins within an 18-game stretch.

• Braves 10, Marlins 6 on Aug. 14: Acuna became the youngest player in Major League history to homer in five straight games. His first career two-homer game in this win over the Marlins gave him eight homers within a span of eight games.

• Braves 5, D-backs 4 on Sept. 8: Swanson's game-ending defensive gem gave the Braves a 5-4 win over the D-backs. Swanson dove into the outfield grass to snare A.J. Pollock's RBI single and then fired an accurate throw that denied Nick Ahmed's attempt to score the game-tying run from second base.

• Braves 5, Phillies 3 on Sept. 22Johan Camargo backed Mike Foltynewicz's strong start with a dazzling catch in the fifth and a two-run, first-inning single that helped provide the Braves the cushion they needed to clinch the NL East with seven games remaining.

Mark Bowman has covered the Braves for MLB.com since 2001.