Atlanta Braves fans find themselves in a weird spot. One the one hand, they have been up-and-down most of the season, multiple key players are not meeting expectations and starting pitchers Max Fried and Kyle Wright are on the injured list. And yet, the team is in first place with a 33-24 record.

So, the question becomes is the upside high enough to maintain a glass half-full mindset? And if so, for how long? A 2021 World Series Championship is a good reminder not to panic or underestimate manager Brian Snitker's group, but the offense desperately needs to come alive.

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With the calendar just flipping to June, this batting slump is starting to look like a legitimate issue. Matt Olson has reverted back to being the home run or bust slugger he was last season, with his average plummeting in the month of May. Michael Harris II does not look anything like the player who won 2022 National League Rookie of the Year since coming back from the IL. Austin Riley is also not where he expects to be.

Snitker was asked about the struggles following Friday's 3-2 loss to the Arizona Diamondbacks, but he was sure to keep perspective of the team's focus as they near the end of a disappointing road trip.

“The one thing we can control is the starting pitching, and the guys have been doing a great job,” Snitker said, per's Mark Bowman. “We’ve been staying in games. When that offense gets clicking like they’re capable of, then we’ll take advantage of all that starting pitching.”

That is a nice idea. Hold things together on the mound, wait for the lineup to give MVP frontrunner Ronald Acuna Jr. and catcher Sean Murphy some assistance and then return to title form. Atlanta has the abundance of talent to dominate if they are all clicking at once. However, if everyone is not firing at once, one unit can pick up the other.

The pitching staff has the fifth best ERA in baseball. Young rightys Spencer Strider and Bryce Elder look like All-Stars with veteran Charlie Morton being a stabilizing force for the starting rotation. They are all doing a fine job buying time for the lineup.

Eventually, though, the Braves will need to swing their way through some tough stretches. Because, as their division lead shrinks, so too will fans' patience.