We are at the end of the MLB regular season, and the Arizona Diamondbacks are assured a spot in the postseason. Who they face in the first round of the NLDS, however, is still up in the air. According to a poll by AZ Central, 52% of Diamondbacks fans would like to face the Atlanta Braves in round one.
The Diamondbacks have several playoff scenarios that could unfold over the season's final two games and the team could finish anywhere from second to fourth in the National League. The team's fortunes will be determined by where they finish in relation to the Milwaukee Brewers and whether the Braves or the St. Louis Cardinals win the wild-card.
If the Cardinals win the wild-card, then the Diamondbacks are guaranteed a top-three finish in the National League and will play the Brewers, with home-court going to the team that finishes the season with the better record.
Things get a little bit trickier if the Braves win the wild-card. Since two teams in the same division can't play one another in a divisional playoff series, the Braves would be bumped up from the fourth seed to the third seed by virtue of the Philadelphia Philies (who also play in the NL East) holding the number one seed in the National League.
If the Braves win the wild-card and the Diamondbacks finish behind the Brewers, the Diamondbacks will be forced into a road playoff series against the Phillies. That would be the least desirable outcome, as indicated by the 10% vote that the option received in the AZ Central poll.
If the Braves do win the wild-card and the Diamondbacks finish ahead of the Brewers, though, the Diamondbacks get a friendly home playoff series against the Braves. This is what Arizona fans want, and rightfully so since the Braves have imploded over the past two weeks with six losses in eight games.
Things should become clearer after Wednesday, when the final MLB games are in the books and final records are settled. Here's hoping that over a half of Diamondbacks fans get what they want.