A pair of winner-take-all Game 5s will decide the two NL Division Series.
First, the Atlanta Braves host the St. Louis Cardinals at 5:02 p.m. EDT. Then, it’s the Washington Nationals at the Los Angeles Dodgers beginning at 8:37 p.m. The winners meet in the best-of-seven NL Championship Series starting Friday.
Things will get settled in Atlanta — not necessarily a good omen for the home team. Over the years, the city has been the place where opponents come to celebrate in October, and St. Louis certainly hopes to continue that trend.
Atlanta has lost nine straight postseason rounds starting with a five-game setback to Arizona in the 2001 NLCS. The Braves are one series loss from equaling an ignominious record set by the Chicago Cubs, who dropped 10 postseason rounds in a row between 1908 and 2003.
The pitching matchup will be a rematch of Game 2, when Atlanta’s Mike Foltynewicz outdueled Jack Flaherty of the Cardinals for a 3-0 victory.
Nine visiting teams eliminated the Braves at their previous ballpark, Turner Field — with the Cardinals doing it twice. The move to SunTrust Park in 2017 didn’t change Atlanta’s fortunes. Last season, the Braves were closed out at home by the Dodgers in Game 4 of the NLDS.