There's no way around it. That was an ugly series for the Milwaukee Brewers. Fresh off winning three of four from the Cincinnati Reds and winning two of three against a very good Baltimore Orioles team, the Brewers laid an egg against the worst team in professional baseball, the Oakland A's.
It was unfathomable heading into this series that the Brewers could've been swept by the 14-50 Oakland Athletics. They're the team from Major League only without the laughs. The Brewers are a first place club that had just been getting hot again. Yet the results from the three games in Milwaukee could not have been further from the expectation.
The A's came to town and won by scores of 5-2, 2-1, and 8-6. The Brewers offense couldn't do anything against the worst pitching staff in baseball. That's not opinion either, they are the worst pitching staff in the league by every metric. Their starting rotation has an ERA over 7.00! The Brewers couldn't muster 7 runs in the entire three game series until the 9th inning of the third game.
The Brewers getting swept by the A's at home was embarrassing and it needs to serve as a wake up call.
Milwaukee has been able to remain on top of the division thus far in large part due to the overall struggles of the rest of the division. The Pirates now lead the division with a 34-30 record while the Brewers are at 34-32. The two other division leaders in the NL both have 40 wins already.
To make matters more frustrating is that the Brewers played well against other competition not too long ago. On this very same homestand, they nearly swept the Baltimore Orioles, who have a 41-24 record and are in 2nd place in a very strong AL East. How did the Brewers go from taking down one of the best teams in the league to looking clueless against one of the worst?
Quite simply, the Brewers played down to the level of their competition. They knew Baltimore was a good team and rose to the challenge. They had to have looked at Oakland and thought they could take it easy and still come out with the win.
Brewers players have been saying all series that they weren't overlooking the A's and they were taking them seriously. That's almost worse. If they were taking them seriously the whole time, they wouldn't have performed this poorly against such a bad team. Everyone else seems more than capable of beating them when they take the A's seriously. It'd be better and easier to just admit they played down to the level of their competition.
This is rock bottom. It has to be. Getting swept at home by the worst team potentially in baseball history when you're a first place team with designs on the postseason is demoralizing. It's taken the Brewers out of first place in a weak division and is just embarrassing for the A's to be the reason why.
The Brewers need to call a team meeting or something after a weekend like this. They absolutely cannot just let this series slide by as if it's just another series and it happens in the game of baseball. The Atlanta Braves lost 2 of 3 against Oakland and they called a team meeting because they were so upset over losing those games to such a bad team. That's what teams with a winning mentality do.
They cannot just brush this series aside like it was nothing. There needs to be yelling and fire and passion in that clubhouse after an embarrassing series sweep like this.