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Braves News and Links: Giants advance to NLDS

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The San Francisco Giants are now headed to the National League Division Series, making it possible for them to continue their even-year dominance in 2016.

MLB: NL Wild Card-San Francisco Giants at New York Mets Anthony Gruppuso-USA TODAY Sports

BRAVES NEWS

The latest buzz around Atlanta’s managerial search

Tim Tucker of the AJC breaks down the rumors surrounding the Braves’ managerial search and how the candidates are viewed around baseball. Ron Washington was in Atlanta for an interview on Wednesday, and while he may not be at the forefront of talks along with Brian Snitker and Bud Black, Washington is highly-regarded in his current position with the Oakland A’s:

“I’d hate to lose him. I hope he gets it,” Melvin was quoted. “That’s how highly I think of Ron Washington.”

What does the future hold for Mallex Smith?

Among the Braves’ four starting-caliber outfielders, the question that persists generally involves the future of rookie Mallex Smith, who impressed in his debut this season despite a broken thumb that sidelined him for three months. Our friends over at Tomahawk Take break down the situation and offer a solution that is likely to be popular with Braves fans: trade Nick Markakis and make Smith the everyday center fielder.

MLB NEWS

Giants defeat Mets 3-0 in classic pitcher’s duel

Madison Bumgarner continued his incredible work in the postseason on Wednesday, pitching a complete game shutout to send San Francisco to the Division Series. A ninth-inning three-run homer from Conor Gillaspie spoiled an impressive outing from Mets starter Noah Syndergaard and supplied all the run support Bumgarner would need. The Giants will now face off against the Cubs, who had 103 wins during the regular season.

Dodgers vs. Nationals series carries historical implications

When the Dodgers and Nationals square off on Friday in Washington, it will mark the first time in baseball history that two African-American managers, Dave Roberts and Dusty Baker, will meet in postseason play. Roberts and Baker are the only current African-American managers in baseball, and Baker regrets that they could not meet in a more consequential series:

"I'm just sad that we have to knock each other out. I wish we could've met in the World Series like [A's third-base coach Ron Washington] and I had talked about.”