All eyes are looking to playoffs with the regular season wrapping up, especially for the Dodgers and Braves -- two NL teams with big divisional leads. The Dodgers' magic number is at six after a 4-1 loss to Arizona on Wednesday, and the Braves are seven games away from clinching the East.
The Dodgers and Braves have set their sights on finishing with the best record in the league in order to clinch home-field advantage throughout the National League playoffs.
As of Thursday, the Braves hold a two-game lead over the Dodgers and St Louis. The situation in the NL Central division is a bit different with St. Louis, Pittsburgh, and Cincinnati separated by just three games, so one team will take the division and the other two will face off in a one-game playoff to determine the Wild Card.
The Dodgers hopes for the best record seemed dashed when they were swept in Cincinnati and on a four-game losing streak, but the Braves matched them by dropping four games to the lowly Phillies.
The Braves end the season with 10 games at home, and eight on the road, with just three against a team over .500, Washington. The Dodgers play exclusively against the NL West to finish the season, with seven games left at home and a 10-game road trip remaining. The best team they will play is Arizona and they currently sit one game over .500 with a four-game series left.
The Dodgers are 29-29 against the NL West on the season, but they have won 21 of the last 27 games against the division. San Francisco and Colorado are eliminated from the NL West race, and San Diego is just one game from joining them.
Since the American League won the All Star Game, they will have home-field advantage for the World Series, but it will still prove to be valuable if the Dodgers reach the NLCS. In 2013, the Dodgers are 2.5 games better at home than on the road, and while that may not seem like much, every little bit matters in the playoffs.