Major League Baseball announced the 2013 playoffs schedule today, and here’s the part that interests you:
Each NL Division Series will begin on Thursday, Oct. 3, and the first full slate of Division Series games, featuring the two AL Division Series openers and a pair of NLDS Game 2s, will take place on Friday, Oct. 4.
That means that one month from today, there will be Dodger playoff baseball. (Yes, I’m aware the division hasn’t yet officially been clinched. I’m also aware the Diamondbacks are closer to last place than first. It’s over.)
The Dodgers finish off the regular season with a home game against Colorado on Sunday, September 29, which means they get three full days to rest up at home and prepare for whichever NL Central opponent might be heading out to Los Angeles to face them. (I’m assuming here that they, along with Atlanta, end up with the two best records in the league. If so, they’ll face either the NL Central champion or the survivor of the Wild Card play-in game, which will almost certainly be comprised of two Central teams.)
That’s wonderful in so many ways, because it means that the Dodgers will have nearly full control of their playoff rotation, and so they can easily have it set so that Clayton Kershaw & Zack Greinke are available in Games 1 & 2. Almost certainly, their opponent — whether it’s the Cardinals or Reds or Pirates — will be fighting up until the last day, even into October 1 for the wild card teams, and won’t have nearly the same luxury.
The NLCS starts on Friday, October 11, and will be televised by TBS, with the ALCS on FOX. Game 1 of the World Series will then be on Wednesday, October 23 (also on FOX), and will start in the home city of the American League champs because Bud Selig flipped a coin or something. There’s two scheduled days off during the World Series, and if necessary, Game 7 would be Thursday, October 31, in the AL city.
One month from today. So close you can taste it, really.