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How & when the Dodgers clinched NL West, playoff bye, NL No. 1 seed, and best MLB record

LA clinched home field advantage throughout the playoffs, as far as they advance, including the World Series

Chicago Cubs v Los Angeles Dodgers Photo by Meg Oliphant/Getty Images

The Dodgers have been the best team in baseball for most of the 2022 season, and we tracked each one of their regular season goals like a checklist, including winning the division, earning a first-round bye, clinching home field advantage through the National League playoffs and the World Series.

Here’s how and when they clinched each step.

Making the playoffs

With a win on Monday, September 12, the Dodgers (97-43) secured a postseason berth, by virtue of clinching a better record than the Brewers (75-66).

NL West

The division was tied as late as June 22, believe it or not, but you wouldn’t know it based on the current standings, thanks to the Dodgers having two of their best months in franchise history, back-to-back.

Los Angeles (98-43) clinched their ninth NL West title in 10 years on Tuesday, September 13, holding a 20½-game lead over the Padres (78-64) with 21 Dodgers games remaining and 20 left for San Diego.

The Dodgers already clinched the season series over the Padres. There are no more Game 163 regular season tiebreakers any more, so winning the season series gave the Dodgers the edge had the two teams somehow tied.

September 13 was the Dodgers’ 141st game of a 162-game season, their earliest clinch by game since moving to Los Angeles.

Bypassing the wild card round

By winning on Monday, September 19, the Dodgers (102-44) ensured a better record than the Cardinals (87-61), NL Central leaders and owners of the third-best record among the three division leaders. That earned the Dodgers a bye into the National League Division Series.

The division winners with the best two records in each league get the top two seeds, and an automatic berth in the LDS. This year, with the last game of the regular season on October 5 and the start of the NLDS on October 11, that means five days off to plan the rotation order you want, plus facing a wild card team that played at least two games, and possibly three, before heading your way.

No. 1 overall seed in the National League

By winning on Sunday, September 25, the Dodgers (106-47) ensured a better record than the NL East-leading Mets (97-57), clinching the No. 1 seed in the NL playoffs.

That means the Dodgers will face the winner of the No. 4 vs. No. 5 wild card series in the NLDS, and should they advance the Dodgers will have home field advantage in the National League Championship Series, too.

Home field advantage in the World Series

With a franchise-record 108 wins already under their belt, the Dodgers on Friday, September 30 ensured home field advantage for any potential World Series matchups, by virtue of clinching a better record than the Astros (102-55), who lost on September 30.

That means the Dodgers will have home field advantage throughout their stay during the 2022 postseason, with a potential for up to eleven games at Dodger Stadium should every series go the distance.