|ARIZONA DIAMONDBACKS||SAN DIEGO PADRES|
|David Peralta - LF||Manuel Margot - CF|
|Ketel Marte - SS||Erick Aybar - SS|
|Paul Goldschmidt - 1B||Wil Myers - 1B|
|J.D. Martinez - RF||Hunter Renfroe - RF|
|Daniel Descalso - 2B||Yangervis Solarte - 2B|
|Jake Lamb - 3B||Jabari Blash - LF|
|A.J. Pollock - CF||Christian Villanueva - 3B|
|Chris Herrmann - C||Rocky Gale - C|
|Robbie Ray - LHP||Dinelson Lamet - RHP|
First of all, the good news. The magic number for home-field advantage over the Rockies has been reduced by one to five, since they got shutout by the San Francisco Giants this afternoon. That drops them five back of the D-backs, and they could end the day in a tie with the Brewers, who are currently tied with the Pirates. The Dodgers are currently also trailing to the Phillies, which is very amusing: if they win, and the D-backs don’t beat the Padres, then the Dodgers will officially clinch. Albeit about a month later than it was looking at one point...
But right now, the Dodgers, Diamondbacks and Rockies all have three-game losing streaks, despite occupying 60% of the National League’s playoff positions. The first two are probably not in trouble, but right now, there’s a real chance we could end up facing the Brewers in the wild-card game at Chase Field on Oct 4. That would be a bit of a shock, since we’ve been assuming for about the past four months that it would be the Rockies. Heck, as late as June 20, Colorado actually had sole possession of first place in the division, with the best record in the NL. Since then? 35-44, the same mark as the Atlanta Braves.
Perhaps that should be a topic for discussion on tomorrow’s off day: would we rather face the Brewers or the Rockies? It has been chatted about a bit in the past, but it now seems rather more than a vague possibility. Though with the Brewers still having to face the Cubs - winners of seven in a row - there is still time for more twists in this one. Ideally, we’d like them to end the year with the same record, face each other in a grinding 16-inning play-in game, and whatever is left the winner can then show up to Chase Field for the wild-card contest.