Mark Sheldon (friend of the Nation) has taken a look at the potential matchups for the National League Division Series. (Did you know, by the way, that the Reds have actually clinched a spot in the playoffs? Yep, it’s true. You may have missed the news reports about this.)

If the postseason began today, the National League Division Series match-ups would be…

Games 1, 2 and 5*: CIN @ PHI, ATL @ SF
Games 3 and 4*: PHI @ CIN, SF @ ATL

The Giants (90-68) are two games up on the Reds (88-70) for the second seed in the NL.

It’s looking increasingly likely that these will be the actual matchups. I just don’t see San Diego catching either Atlanta or San Francisco.

So…we all wanted to avoid Philadelphia, but that’s Cincinnati’s probably opponent. We can argue all day and night* about the wisdom of giving everyone a rest last night — for the record, I don’t have a problem with Dusty’s decision there — but the fact is that the Reds probably need to win out to have a chance at the #2 seed in the National League. Even then, someone would have to collapse for the Reds to grab that seed.

Therefore, let’s look at a series against Philly.** Game One, in Philadelphia, would be on Wednesday, October 6, followed by Game Two on Friday.

That means, of course, that Cincinnati’s first home game would be Game Three of the series on Sunday, October 10. I’ll be there, hopefully to see the Reds finish off a sweep and clinch a berth in the National League Championship series.

We’ll have a full preview of the series once it’s official, but I’m interested in your thoughts on playing Philadelphia. The first thing that comes to mind is that three-headed monster at the top of their rotation: Roy Halladay, Roy Oswalt, Cole Hamels. They also have a pretty good everyday lineup, and most of them have been there and done that in the postseason.

I know many of you didn’t want to play Philly in the first round, and I understand that. If it happens…well, seems like a good way for the young, up-and-coming Reds to grab, symbolically, the National League torch from the best team of the last three years. It’s our turn.

*…and many of you have been discussing just that, in a mostly civil tone. That’s one of my favorite things about RN, by the way. Our conversations seldom devolve into the type of neanderthal back-and-forth you see almost everywhere else on the interwebs. Thanks!

**One of my new favorite things: looking at the Postseason page on, and seeing the Reds logo prominently displayed (see below). I’m still in disbelief that the good guys are actually back in the playoffs.

10 Responses

  1. Python Curtus

    WHY, WHY, WHY has that idiot Selig scheduled an extra travel day in the first round of the play offs? This is why the World Series isn’t starting till 10/27. Back when the playoffs were one round, 5 games, it would go 2 at stadium A, 3 at stadium B (stadium B being the “home team advantage”)

  2. dom zanni

    losing thoise two games with 8-1 leads will prove disastrous

  3. bho52

    I was going through the game logs of Philly’s big 3. Interestingly, all 3 of them had one of their worst outings come against the Giants. I love the “beat the best to be the best” mentality, but maybe it’d be nice having the Giants take these guys out. Wouldn’t bet on the matchup occurring though

  4. Furniture City Red

    @Greg Dafler: We were talking earlier today and came to the same conclusion…Halladay’s the one. Oswalt and Hamels have been pitching good, but the Reds can score runs off both those guys. And like Steve wrote – Chapman, Bray and Rhodes have the best chance of shutting down the Phils as any bull pen they’ve faced this year…plus with the off day those three will be available every game.

    Maybe I’m just talking my self into it, but the more I look at it the better I like our chances in a short series with the Phillies.

    Question – Who thought we’d be having THIS thread back in april?

  5. lookatthathat


  6. dom zanni

    you guys are delusional three and out

  7. Matt

    C.Garber said: “…they’ll need to beat three good teams to get a ring. Doesn’t matter what order, really.” Very true. G.Dafler and others makes a good case for how the Reds matchup with Philly, NOW, as opposed to earlier in the season. Both ends of the pitching staff are more fine-tuned than earlier in the season. The only thing that concerns me is that the offensive production has declined in recent weeks.

  8. Wil Payne

    I think the current states of Texas and Minnesota put Cincinnati above the Rangers and tied with the Twins. If the Reds can beat the Phillies, there is no reason to think we won’t actually beat the Yankees in the World Series…

  9. walkswillhaunt

    I agree with Wood pitching in Philly as well. I would go Volquez, Wood, Arroyo, Cueto. GM 5 you can either have Volquez or Wood ready to go. The only person I would rather not have pitch in Philly is Cueto.

    Curious that MLB does its best to stagger games during the week for ratings, yet they have 4 games scheduled on a NFL Sunday. If you are going to use all these off days (which I hate) you would think avoiding the NFL would be a priority