It’s that time of year. The playoffs are beginning to take shape, and invitations are being sent out. For the first time since 2008, the Brewers received one of those invitations. But, the Brewers have a much better team than they did in ’08. Oh, and they won the division, not the Wildcard.
The Brewers clinched their first division title since 1982 today in a 4-1 win over the Marlins. They also received some help from the Cubs, who defeated the Cardinals and lowered the Brewers’ magic number from one to zero. Anyway, the way the Brewers won this game was actually kind of scary, just because of how similar it was to when they clinched the Wildcard in 2008.
In 2008, on the last day of the season, Ryan Braun stepped up to the plate with a man on base and the Brewers down by a run against the Cubs in the bottom of the eighth inning. He hit a two-run homer to give the Brewers the lead, and eventually clinch the Wildcard and go to the postseason.
Tonight was slightly different, but in a very similar situation. Braun stepped up to the plate with two guys on, with the game tied 1-1. Then, on a 3-1 count, Braun crushed a Clay Hensley pitch into dead center field to give the Brewers a 4-1 lead. But it literally felt exactly the same as it did in ’08. It was unbelievable.
Anyway, now that the Brewers have clinched their spot in the postseason, they can finally begin to align their postseason roster and rotation- something Brewers fans have been avidly waiting for. The rotation probably won’t be set up until we figure out whether or not the Brewers are starting on the road or at home, however.
The Brewers will look to win this three-game series against the Marlins, and hopefully gain some momentum heading into the postseason. Zack Greinke (15-6, 3.75 ERA) will go for the Brewers, and he’ll be looking for his 16th win of the season, which would tie a career-high for him. Greinke is 2-0 with a 3.00 ERA in his career against the Marlins.
The Marlins will counter with Alex Sanabia (0-0, 1.29 ERA), who has just one start this year, which came against the Phillies. He’s never faced the Brewers in his career.