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2015 playoffs: Dodgers lose ground to Mets in home field race

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The NL West could be decided as early as Monday night; the NL Central as early as Tuesday.

Chris Humphreys-USA TODAY Sports

While getting swept in Colorado was certainly an unpleasant experience for the Dodgers, it didn't really significantly affect their chances of making the postseason, but rather just changed the location of their impending champagne celebration for winning the division championship.

But stepping on all those landmines in Denver did negatively impact the potential home field advantage in the National League Division Series.

Four of the five playoff teams are set in the National League, with the Dodgers on the precipice of joining the club. But there are two distinct groupings of teams.

The Cardinals own the best record in baseball, with neither the Mets, Dodgers nor Giants mathematically able to catch them for the top seed. The only team that still has a chance to do that is the Pirates, though down three games with six to play makes that a tough hill to climb, but Pittsburgh does host St. Louis for three games starting Monday night.

What it assures though is that the three NL Central teams will fight each other for one spot in the National League Championship Series. Ethier the Cardinals or Pirates will win the division, and have home field advantage in the NLDS against the winner of the Wild Card Game between the Pirates/Cardinals and Cubs.

The Mets have already clinched the NL East, and will play the NL West champ in the NLDS. New York owns a 1½-game lead over the Dodgers, and owns the tiebreaker by winning four of their seven regular season matchups. The Mets' magic number to clinch home field advantage in the NLDS is five.

The Mets have six games remaining, while the Dodgers have seven. For the Dodgers to secure home field over the Mets, they need nine of those 13 outcomes to fall their way in the season's final week.

New York is off Monday before opening a three-game series in Philadelphia on Tuesday.

National League playoff standings
Team W-L Pct GB Magic #
NLC St. Louis 98-58 .628 --- 4 over PIT
WC1 Pittsburgh 95-61 .609 3 3 over ChC
WC2 Chicago 90-65 .581 11 over PIT

NLE New York 89-67 .571 --- 5 over LA
NLW Los Angeles 87-68 .561 2 SF / 9 NY
San Francisco 81-74 .523 6 14 over LA

Monday schedule

4:05 p.m. PT: St. Louis (Lance Lynn) at Pittsburgh (J.A. Happ)

5:05 p.m.: Kansas City (Yordano Ventura) at Chicago (Kyle Hendricks)

7:15 p.m.: Los Angeles (Zack Greinke) at San Francisco (Jake Peavy)