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Dodgers: Max Muncy Questions Rivalry with Atlanta Braves

PITTSBURGH, PA - JUNE 06: Max Muncy #13 of the Los Angeles Dodgers looks on during the game against the Pittsburgh Pirates at PNC Park on June 6, 2018 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Joe Sargent/Getty Images)

The Los Angeles Dodgers and the Atlanta Braves are not rivals, plain and simple. With relatively no history between them and with the Braves’ lack of postseason success in the past decade, the notion is silly. Let’s put it to bed.

Just because two teams may be somewhat separate from the rest of the pack in terms of talent, it does not make them a rivarly. The only rivals the Dodgers have are the team from the Bay Area. If you want to stretch it to a historical standpoint, you may also be able to include the New York Yankees and St. Louis Cardinals. No, the Angels-Dodgers ‘rivalry’ is not a rivalry at all as much as the media may want you to think it is.

When asked about how it felt to beat the ‘rival’ Atlanta Braves, infielder Max Muncy had the best answer possible:

What would make them our rivals? Nothing at all.

The Atlanta Braves currently sit at a fantastic 72-52 record and the Dodgers hold an 82-42 record. Ten games of separation between the league’s best and second best teams is a wide gap.

While the Dodgers could very well play the Atlanta Braves in the playoffs — more likely than not in the NLCS if at all — both teams being good means absolutely nothing to a rivalry. They are not the same thing.

Now that I think about it, how are those guys up in the Bay Area doing this season?

Written by Daniel Preciado

My name is Daniel Preciado and I am 18 years old. I am a sophomore Sport Analytics major and Cognitive Science and Economics dual minor at Syracuse University. When I am not in New York, I live in Whittier, California --- not too far from Chavez Ravine. I am pretty old-school for being an analytics guy and I will always embrace debate. Also, Chase Utley did absolutely nothing wrong.

13 Comments

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  1. Historically, the Giants are our rivals, whether one team is good or bad, it doesn’t matter. However, ‘bad blood’ definitely exists between LA and AZ. Ain’t no doubt about that.

  2. Dodgers are my team since Los Angeles came to the league Rivalry is and always will be any team because you always hear chant beat LA at any stadium! No matter how you put it LA is disliked by any fan who likes their team!

  3. Before baseball was ruined forever with expansion, realignment, interleague play etc, the dodgers and braves were rivals in the nl west. That was when baseball was pure and probably before Muncy was born. I get it.

  4. The Braves media has hyped this rivalry noise up – they (the Braves media) fear the Dodgers talent but also want to be mentioned in the same sentence as the Dodgers – during the broadcast their announcers kept saying that the Dodgers can do this and the Dodgers can do that and then they follow it with “just like the Braves”. They admire the Dodgers home run power and they remember the way the Dodgers crushed them in the playoffs last year with home runs. They also believe their team this season (with Acuna’s rise and the addition of Donaldson) has as much power as the Dodgers do. Watching their feed yesterday they kept doing it (comparing themselves to the Dodgers) and it was WAY annoying. I kept saying to their announcers on the television “can we just do the game”! They don’t seem to realize that the Dodgers hit homers from every spot in the lineup. They (their current lineup) just don’t have homer hitting depth 1-8. Just like Arizona, Atlanta has a serious case of Dodger envy going on. Ergo, I love Muncy’s response in this article! We don’t give Atlanta a minutes thought……..then again, we don’t think about the Giants either!

    • Correct, bluz1st. We don’t think about the Giants but they DO run their whole existence around us. A guy like Bumgarner always makes sure that in every series between them and the Dodgers, that he pitches in one of those games. It seems that every move they make on or off the field during a game is with the Dodgers in mind , no other team affects them as the Dodgers apparently do.

      • Judging from the way the Brave’s announcers call a game against us, there is no doubt that a rivalry exists. Frankly, whenever you play a team that matches up well with your team, a rivalry should exist. And, as PaulDodgerFan1965 states above, our greatest rivalries are the dreaded Giants, Yankees, and, of late, the Arizona team. I do not care if the Giants are 50 games behind us, they always come to play against the Dodgers, and that is the way it should be. Shades of the 1950s and 1960s remain, and that is for the good of the game, and the fans!!!! Go Blue!!!

      • Paul……….Agreed……..The Dodgers have reached a status in the eyes of several teams and no where does Dodger envy exist more powerfully than in San Fran. They (Frisco) seem to look at their schedule then set up their rotation just for the Dodgers almost every time they play. It’s funny! Certain teams do focus on LA…….teams like San Fran, Ariz, Col and that’s natural given they are in our division………but Atlanta? Maybe back in the 70’s & 80’s when they were in the West but now? No. The Dodgers don’t give them any special thought these days so their (Atlanta’s) desire to be considered a rivalry with the Dodgers are faulty comparisons.

  5. The play by play guys in Arizona are the worst. Aside from Marte and Robbie Ray, these guys have nothing. Pollack, Greinke and Goldschsmidt kept them in the game. They dis the Dodgers all the time, even when not playing them. Vin called games with respect for all players. Brenley?

  6. Atlanta is not a rivalry as many have stated, the media wants it to be, mainly because this year in the NL we are about the most evenly matched, we only look at Atlanta as just another team nothing more our only rivals are within our division, our biggest is and always has been and always will be is the hated ones SF, what gets me is when fans think the Angels are but they aren’t mainly because we’ve never played each other for anything meaningful. Like losing the series to Atlanta is really no big deal it’s not a rivalry.

  7. Atlanta played well against us in this series. But, no, they are not rivals. Other than being an opponent. And, to be realistic, the outcome of today’s game may have been different if Roberts was not experimenting with May. When May loaded the bases, if we only lead the west by 2 games, he gets pulled. He is a rookie. And then Roberts leaves May in after the GS. More experimentation. And tough love. “You got in this mess, get yourself out”. And he did. There will be future rewards for this action.

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