Even if there’s not exactly a nip in the October air it’s postseason time again in Atlanta. Not that Wild Card game of last year when a sloppy Braves defensive inning and sloppy umpiring led to a loss against the Cardinals and an exit before Atlanta even got to the actual postseason. (Even most players call the Wild Card game a play-in game not a playoff game). And not 2010 when the Braves limped into the division series without two of their best players Chipper Jones and Martin Prado who had suffered season-ending injuries and then lost closer Billy Wagner during the series. They lost in four games to the eventual World Series champion Giants with all four games decided by one run. This time the Braves enter a real playoff series with a team as healthy as its been at any point all season. And even if playing .500 ball down the stretch while the Cardinals were surging – sound familiar? – caused the Braves to fritter away the NL’s best record and home-field advantage for the NLCS if they happen to play St. Louis it still left Atlanta with its first division title since 2005 and with home-field advantage in the first round against the West champion Dodgers. And by the way if you saw the electric atmosphere for the Wild Card game this week in Pittsburgh where they hadn’t had another postseason since Sid slid for the Braves against the Pirates in ’92 well are you really certain that drawing the Pirates as the No. 1 seed would have been a lot better option than drawn Kershaw Greinke and the Dodgers? I’m not so sure anymore. Anyway the Braves are either putting up a good front or weren’t nearly as upset about losing the top seed as were so many of our readers and other Braves fans. The NLCS is a best-of-seven series with a 2-3-2 format while the division series is a best-of-five with a 2-2-1 format with the first two games here in Atlanta and a Game 5 back here if the series goes the distance.
Postseason time in ATL, this time an actual series
Atlanta Journal-Constitution | Oct 3