The Dodgers currently lead MLB in wins. In order to get home-field, the Dodgers are going to need to go on a nice run to close the season.
The Dodgers currently boast the best record in the NL and one of the best records in baseball. Despite having such a great record, the New York Yankees and Houston Astros are hot on the Dodgers’ tail and are tied with LA. With the three best teams in baseball dominating the opposition, this could be a race that comes down to the last day of the season.
MLB.com recently did an article on the strength of schedule left for every potential postseason team and the Astros and Yankees both have easier remaining schedules left than the Dodgers. The Dodgers remaining opposition has a .486 strength of schedule while the Yankees’ schedule is slightly worse at .485.
The Astros have a remaining schedule is much easier than the Dodgers and Yankees. Houston’s remaining schedule has a .467 strength of schedule rating which is much easier than LA and New York’s remaining schedule. This gives the Astros the edge in the race for home-field over the Dodgers and Yankees.
The Dodgers and Yankees will match up later this month and that schedule has big implications for home-field advantage as it could determine the tie-breaker if the two clubs end up with identical records. It could also be a potential World Series preview as both teams have a strong possibility to make the World Series.
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Whenever the Yankees and Dodgers meet it makes headlines as two of the most historic teams in the game square off. Although this is just another regular-season series it will mean something in the race for home-field. The Dodgers will not meet up with the Astros so they would need to finish with a better record than them to ensure home-field.
Outside of the Yankees, the Dodgers’ toughest series left are both in September. The Dodgers will travel to New York to play the Mets and the Mets have been one of the hottest teams in baseball lately. While they could cool down by then, they will likely be in the wild card hunt and playing for their postseason lives.
Then there is a brief two-game series with the Rays in September. The Rays are another wild card contender and with their pitching strategies like using an opener, they could be a tough team to figure out. Outside of the Rays and Mets, there are usual September suspects like the Giants and Rockies. The Dodgers play the Giants six times in September.
While home-field advantage is not always the difference in the World Series, it sure does help, especially for the Dodgers who are 47-16 at home this season. Meanwhile, they are only six games over .500 on the road this season. The Dodgers could still win the World Series without home-field advantage but they have a much better chance with it.