Atlanta Braves: Brewers, Diamondbacks, or Giants? Who Is Best NLDS Matchup?
With a commanding, eight-game lead in the wild-card race, there's no doubt that the Atlanta Braves will play in the postseason.
The only question is, "Who will they play come season's end?"
Let's take a look at the potential first-round matchups for Atlanta, and how the Braves stack up against each team.
Here we go.
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The Milwaukee Brewers have been one of the hottest teams as of late, winning 22 of their last 25 games.
They've got the same record as the Braves and are led by the dynamic duo of Prince Fielder and Ryan Braun.
Combined, the two big boppers are hitting .317 with 52 home runs and 179 RBI and have scored 167 runs.
I think it's safe to say that no one wants to face those hitters back-to-back in October.
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Although the Braves just got finished sweeping the D'Backs out of town, the Snakes have been playing fairly well since the All-Star break.
They hold a game-and-a-half lead in the NL West and are led by MVP candidate Justin Upton.
The Braves have had good success against the Diamondbacks in 2011 and would likely relish an opportunity to face off with them in the opening round of the playoffs.
San Francisco Giants
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That's a name you want to avoid for as long as possible in the playoffs.
Though the Braves beat the Giants ace in their last matchup, Lincecum pitched masterfully, with a solo home run to Chipper Jones being his only blemish.
Even if you can sneak past Lincecum, the Giants throw Matt Cain and Ryan Vogelsong right after him, both of whom sport sub-3.00 ERAs.
The good news for teams facing that Giants is that their offense is worse than anemic.
Best Matchup for the Braves?
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The best match up for the Braves is clearly the Arizona Diamondbacks.
Milwaukee's bats are capable of scoring runs by the bucket load, and the Giants pitching is awfully terrifying in a short series.
The Braves proved they can handle the NL West leaders as they finished a four-game sweep yesterday at Turner Field.
While the Braves would prefer to face off against the Diamondbacks, it's looking more and more like the Brewers will be the team Atlanta is matched up against in the NLDS.