Two days after the conclusion of the 2012 MLB regular season, two National League contenders will converge on Turner Field in Atlanta to play a can't-miss playoff game that will determine which side earns a trip to a best-of-five NLDS series this October.
The Atlanta Braves have clinched an NL Wild Card spot this fall, and will host a one-game playoff on Friday night.
The Braves went 48-33 at home this season and will surely be the favorites to advance playing in front of a raucous postseason crowd.
Here we get you set with everything you need to know to make sure you don't miss a minute of the playoff action.
Where: Turner Field, Atlanta
When: Friday, October 5, 2012
Start Time: TBA
Will the Braves' Pitching Steal the Show?
Only three National League teams have allowed fewer runs through the first 160 games of the season than the Atlanta Braves, and only four in the Majors. The Braves had surrendered just 595 runs coming into Tuesday's game vs. the Pittsburgh Pirates.
Atlanta's pitching staff, led by Tim Hudson, Tommy Hanson and Mike Minor, has allowed just 3.43 earned runs on average this season.
Right-hander Kris Medlen has won 10 of his 12 starts this season and gave the Braves a mighty boost in the bullpen. Medlen is sporting an impressive 1.57 ERA this season and will give Atlanta a reliable option to throw on the mound on Friday.
How Much of an Impact Will the Crowd Have?
The Atlanta Braves haven't hosted a postseason game since their 2010 NLDS series against the San Francisco Giants. Unfortunately the Braves' home-field advantage wasn't enough, as they lost Games 3 and 4 at Turner Field and dropped the series 1-3.
Atlanta's last postseason win at Turner Field came in October 2005 against the Houston Astros in the NLDS.
Expect an awesome turnout in Atlanta on Friday night as Braves fans welcome back playoff baseball and look to lift their club to its first home playoff win in seven years. Because if they lose, there won't be another game until 2013.
Follow Bleacher Report Featured Columnist Patrick Clarke on Twitter for more postseason baseball chatter.
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