After an enormously disappointing home series against the NL-worst Padres, the Milwaukee Brewers have a very crucial three series stretch approaching.
Before the Padres series, the Brewers were winners of seven of their last 11 games and were looking to keep pace with the Cubs and give themselves breathing room in the Wild Card race. However, what could have been a sweep of the Padres, turned into a series loss leaving a lot more questions than answers regarding the Brewers postseason hopes.
Looking ahead, the Brewers have a difficult three series road trip coming up, and all of the games are against NL playoff contenders. This will be a crucial three series stretch for Milwaukee and that can’t be stressed enough. As of now, they still sit atop the Wildcard standings and remain close to the Cubs for the division. But a disappointing road trip could wash a season’s worth of work away in the blink of an eye.
The Road Trip
The road trip begins in Atlanta where the Brewers will face the red-hot Braves who have won seven out of their last ten games. They also sit just one game behind the Brewers for the top spot in the Wildcard standings.
Milwaukee will then head to Chicago for two games against the pesky Cubs who the Brewers are currently 3-8 against on the season. The final stop will be in St. Louis for three games against a Cardinals club that sits just 3.5 games back of the second Wildcard spot and have also won seven of their past ten games.
The Wild Card Standings
All three of these teams are fighting for a playoff spot and are all playing good baseball at the moment. If the Brewers struggle on this road trip it could make reaching the playoffs extremely difficult. As it currently stands, all but four teams in the NL still have a shot at making the playoffs and five teams are within 4.5 games of the final Wildcard spot.
A continued poor stretch from Milwaukee could lead to them falling back in the pack. Having to make up games down the stretch is already a difficult task but having to do that while jumping a number of teams in the standings makes it even harder. Lastly, at this point in the year, a poor road trip would most likely make winning the division out of reach.
On the lighter side, if the Brewers can play well on this road trip, they will put themselves in great position moving forward. It would potentially allow them to gain separation between themselves and the Braves for the top Wildcard spot. They would also be able to possibly pull closer to the Cubs and potentially over take them for the division lead.
Finally, a good series against the Cardinals would knock them back in the Wildcard race, making it a lot more difficult for them to get back into the playoff hunt. A lot of positives can come from the road trip as well but after the Padres series it’s easy to focus on the negatives.
Recently the Milwaukee Brewers have been inconsistent, but they have all the players there to put together a strong road trip, just as they did on the west coast against the Giants and Dodgers. Whichever way the pendulum swings on this road trip, could drastically shape how the playoffs look as we come down the final stretch of the season.
Whether it’s positive or negative we will have a very good idea of where the Milwaukee Brewers postseason hopes stand moving forward.