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MLB Atlanta BravesMLB Playoffs

Atlanta Braves Will Be First Team to Clinch Playoff Berth and Division Crown

Justin Upton, Freddie Freeman

Daniel Shirey-USA TODAY Sports

After taking two of three from the Washington Nationals, the Atlanta Bravesboasting baseball’s best record at 76-48, just got one step closer to being the first team in the league to clinch their spot in the 2013 postseason. And with the way they have dominated their division, it is certain that Atlanta will be clinching that spot within just a matter of games.

In the month of August, Atlanta has played just one game against a non- NL East opponent, a win over the Colorado Rockies. In their division games in August, the Braves are 12-3, recording series wins over each of their four division competitors. In fact, Atlanta has only lost seven games since the All-Star break and hasn’t dropped a series against an NL East team since the Philadelphia Phillies beat them in early July.

On the season, Atlanta has a 35-19 record against the division and has simply dominated the NL East overall. The Braves have played so well in fact that they are the only team in baseball that has a double-digit lead over second place. At 14.5 games ahead of the Nationals, the Braves are rapidly heading toward a spot in the 2013 postseason.

And for Atlanta, a team with so much hype entering the season particularly where their outfield was concerned, the team is living up to the expectations. The offense has been clicking perfectly as of late, and once again Atlanta’s pitching is the best in the league. Their overall team ERA is 3.21, and their bullpen ERA of 2.39 is a spectacular sign of where the Braves’ strength truly lies.

For as successful as Atlanta has been, the rest of their division has struggled this season. It is for that reason that with seven of Atlanta’s remaining 12 series against NL East teams, that it really is only a matter of time until the Braves can celebrate winning their first division crown since 2005. They will be the first team in baseball to clinch their 2013 postseason bid.

Marilee Gallagher is a baseball writer for RantSports.com. You can follow her on Twitter @MGallagher17 like her page on Facebook, or join her network on Google.