In the blink of an eye, October has arrived.
On Thursday night, the Los Angeles Dodgers will play their first playoff game in four years, facing the Atlanta Braves as the two talented National League foes begin their NL division series at Atlanta’s Turner Field.
While the Dodgers are ecstatic to have won the NL West and made the postseason, their ultimate goal is to win a World Series. They will be challenged immediately by a tough opponent in the Braves.
Although their regular-season matchups came in the first half of the season during the Dodgers’ rough stretch, the Braves owned the teams’ season series with a three-game sweep of the Dodgers in Atlanta and then splitting a four-game series at Dodger Stadium shortly after the call-up of Yasiel Puig in June.
On paper, both teams are evenly matched. They have tremendous power in their lineups and also have a pair of pitchers who can carry them through the series.
As fans keep a close eye on the clock in eager anticipation of Game 1 of the NLDS, here’s a look at what the Dodgers need to do in order to win and advance to the NLCS.