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MLB OctoberFest: The Milwaukee Brewers

The 2020 Milwaukee Brewers backed their way into the expanded playoffs with some help. How long will they be able to stick around?

Miller Park, Home of Milwaukee Brewers by DaveyNin is licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0

MLB OctoberFest: The Milwaukee Brewers

Estimated Reading Time: 3 Minutes

Well, the 2020 MLB Playoffs are upon us.  As baseball finally moves into its Bubble phase, 16 teams are squaring off to determine this year’s World Series champion.  While it’s hard to think that there won’t be an asterisk next to the 2020 title, a champion will be crowned.

The MLB is a fickle beast.  Star-driven and tank-friendly, teams in the dumpster one year can be the king of the mountain the next.  With that, stakes are high for almost every team as they make their playoff run, with sought-after stars often heading for greener pastures if they feel their squad can’t get over the hump. 

We’re looking at each of the MLB playoff contenders and diving into what’s at stake for each team, the odds of making a deep run, and key storylines to watch. 

Let’s hit the Milwaukee Brewers and their chances of securing a ring in 2020.

The Milwaukee Brewers

Expectations: One and Done

The Brewers are one of two teams to qualify for the expanded 2020 postseason with a losing record (Houston is the other). It took until the final day of the regular season, and they needed some help from other teams to actually qualify – but here they are. Their opponent in the opening series? The Los Angeles Dodgers. Yeah – I don’t see it ending well for the Brew Crew.

Ummm, that’d be the 29-31 Milwaukee Brewers….

What’s Working For Them: The Pitching Staff

I’d have to go back through this series and look to be certain, but I’m fairly confident that the answer to this question for most of the playoff bound teams has to do with their pitching. This team is no different. Brandon Woodruff and Corbin Burnes did most of the heavy lifting for the rotation, while Josh Hader and Devin Williams held down the bullpen. Williams was a revelation this season. He faced 100 batters and struck out 53 of them.

The arms will have to step it up if they want to give themselves a chance against one of the best lineups in baseball. It will prove even more challenging since Burnes landed on the IL, likely ending his season.

What Might Hold Them Back: Dormant Bats

Go ahead, call me Captain Obvious. This team was in a “rebuild” a few short years ago, only they started seeing results sooner than expected. Only they got in their own way a bit this offseason. They let Yasmani Grandal and Mike Moustakas leave, and the bats they brought in to fill those holes didn’t really deliver. Add to that the fact that Christian Yelich was very much not himself this season (he finished with a .205 BA, 12 HR, and 22 RBI. Top it all off with Lorenzo Cain deciding to opt out in August, and you have a recipe for one of the worst offenses in MLB this season. Sure, guys like Keston Hiura and Jedd Gyorko held their own, but if the rest of the lineup doesn’t start producing, their postseason could be over before they know it.

Storyline To Watch: 2020 Surprise?

Like March Madness, matchups pitting the top seed vs. the bottom seed tend to play out predictably. Given the fact that this particular #1 vs. #8 features the best team in MLB and an underachieving squad that finished below .500, the outcome seems like as close to a lock as you can get.

BUT – this is 2020, a year full of weirdness, surprises, and strange occurrences. So – ya never know?

Joe is an actor who grew up eating, living and breathing sports. He spent many an afternoon on the soccer or baseball field in his youth (and even gave several other sports a shot) before a series of events put him on the path to pursuing a performing career. Subsequently, he's worked almost every other type of job you could imagine while trying to support that endeavor. Whenever he's not working any of those jobs, he can often be found watching, playing or discussing sports in some way. Most of that banter revolves around the Mets, Giants, Rangers or Manchester United. His short term goal is to fully convert his fiance into a rabid sports fan, not someone who leaves the room whenever he turns a game on.

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