As the Arizona Diamondbacks close in on clinching the NL West, there has been plenty of talk about trying position the team somehow to avoid a NLDS matchup against the Philadelphia Phillies. As it stands in the MLB playoff race, the Diamondbacks would need to overtake the Milwaukee Brewers to be able to play the Atlanta Braves in the first round of the playoffs and have home-field. Currently, Arizona is only one game behind the Brewers for home-field.
If Atlanta is the wild card, the Phillies cannot play them in the first round, as they are in the same division. So the D-Backs could only play Philly or Atlanta.
That is what we have all thought.
Recently, the St. Louis Cardinals and the San Francisco Giants have been surging and the Braves have been sputtering. Atlanta's lead is now only two and a half games over the Cardinals and three and a half over the Giants.
If one of those teams overtakes the Braves, then Philadelphia would play the wild card team. That would mean Arizona would play Milwaukee.
Naturally, considering the Brewers' record at home (52-23 - best in the National League), in any case, the D-Backs will want to overtake Milwaukee.
With eight games remaining on the schedule, all at home, and only a game separating Arizona from Milwaukee, the previously unimaginable is now within reach - not only a playoff berth, but home-field advantage in the NLDS.