The game of baseball is a strange one in many ways. Roll back the clock to the 2013 National League Division Series and the Atlanta Braves figured themselves in a good position to force a Game 5 against the Los Angeles Dodgers. One swing of Juan Uribe‘s bat changed all of that and broke the Braves’ hearts with the best closer in baseball standing on the bullpen mound. The Braves haven’t beaten the Dodgers since.
In some ways it seemed like the three-game sweep of close games in Los Angeles served as another reminder that this was the Dodgers, yes those Dodgers. Maybe in the back of their mind the Braves wondered if they would ever again get enough big hits and big plays to go their way to beat this great team, one of the best that money can buy of course.
All of those demons were exercised on Wednesday night. When that double play was completed and the Braves went crazy, you were looking at a playoff celebration. That was the playoff win that they should have gotten in Game 4 last year. David Carpenter did not even have to face Uribe in a solid seventh inning. The eighth was taken care of by Jordan Walden.
All of the bad memories had to come crashing back down when the Dodgers loaded the bases against Craig Kimbrel, though. Here we go again, they must have thought. The Dodgers always find a way to win. But this time they didn’t. It really was a celebration like they won a playoff game. This was the game that erased that terrible loss from their hearts once and for all.
Maybe the Braves will lose eight games in a row once again but something tells you that they will begin to play better now. That isn’t to say that they will make the playoffs. They still might not. You can bet that the sweep at the hands of the Dodgers a short while ago was the beginning of an eight-game losing streak for a reason. At long last the Braves shrugged the playoff monkey from NLDS Game 4 off of their backs and now absolutely anything could happen.