Milwaukee Brewers: Right Back Into The NL Central Division Race
By David Gasper
The Milwaukee Brewers entered the month of September, pretty much completely out of the NL Central division race. That has changed.
It’s amazing what a good two weeks of baseball can do for you. The Milwaukee Brewers were seven games back earlier in September, with their slim playoff hopes riding solely on the second Wild Card spot.
After their loss in the first game of the Cubs series at Miller Park, the Brewers playoff odds, per Fangraphs, were at 5.6%, with a 0.6% chance at a division title. Then the Brewers rattled off wins in the next three games against the Cubs, then won all four in Miami (while losing Christian Yelich for the year along the way), and now have taken two of three in the series against the Cardinals, on the road in St. Louis.
The Crew’s playoff odds now sit at 32.7% with a 6.6% chance at the division title.
Currently, the Brewers sit three games back of the Cardinals in the division, and one game back of the Cubs in the WIld Card. They are right back in the thick of things in the division. Plus, this team is trending up, while the Cubs and the Cardinals aren’t.
In the last ten games, the Brewers are 9-1, while the Cubs and Cardinals are each 5-5. Both St. Louis and Chicago have tough schedules to finish out the season, while the Brewers have a pretty soft schedule to finish.
We wrote before this Cardinals series that it would be the true test of this Brewers team without Christian Yelich. They passed that test. They were close games and quite stressful, but there was just some magic in the air with this club and they won the series, winning two of three, and making up ground in the standings.
Last year, the Brewers seemed way out of the division race, but rode a hot streak in September to a division title. That could be brewing once again here in 2019. They’ll have to do it without their superstar Christian Yelich, but they’ve proven to be up to the task so far.
Chicago and St. Louis play each other seven more times before the season is over. While that could help the Brewers jump into the Wild Card, they need to surpass both teams for the division title, meaning they’ll need help from those other opponents for the Cubs and Cardinals.
The Cubs are going to take on the Reds and Pirates as their other two opponents to finish the year, so may not get too much help there. The Cardinals have the Nationals and the Diamondbacks, both of whom are good teams that could provide some help for the Brewers.
It’s going to be a wild ride to the finish, no matter how it ends up. Whether the Milwaukee Brewers make the playoffs or not, these final two weeks will be interesting, and it certainly looks like things are trending their way.