Of the contenders in both leagues, only the Diamondbacks have a tougher remaining schedule than the Braves.
Only the Yankees, Brewers and Indians have an easier schedule than the Phils, Jeff Passan concludes.
This it’s likely the better team will not win the NL East.
Consider: The Phils play 24 of their last 38 games against teams currently under .500. The Braves play 26 of their final 39 against teams above .500.
Philly has 12 more against the Mets and Marlins; the Braves, just six.
More damaging than strength of schedule is the sheer volume of games. The Braves are about to play their 16th in 14 days; barring any postponements this week, they’ll have played 22 games in 20 days before a respite Monday. After that, they have only two more off days. The Phils still have four, although they do end the season with 17 games in 17 days.
The disparity is due to the awful weather during the season’s first month. (You could also count the April 14 debacle against the Cubs in Wrigley, when the Braves blew an 8-run lead in bitter cold temperatures, as a weather casualty.)
Then there’s interleague, with its ridiculous division vs. division format. The Cardinals have played 6 games vs. the Royals. The Braves, six against the Red Sox. And as the Braves and Phils battle for a division title, wild card berth, or both, on the season’s last weekend, the Brewers will be playing host to Detroit.