Chicago Cubs and Milwaukee Brewers face off in an important series
MILWAUKEE, Wis. (Sept. 21, 2017)- Chicago Cubs and Milwaukee Brewers face off in an important series that may decide who wins the NL Central.
The Cubs currently lead the division by three and a half games ahead of the Brewers. Today is the start of a four game series in which the Brewers may be able to stake their claim for the post season in front of their hometown fans.
The race for the NL Central crown has been one to watch this season, where at one point it was anyone’s game (and I am not just talking opening day when everyone is 1-0 or 0-1).
Game one in this series has Jake Arrieta making his first start after missing two weeks due to a hamstring strain. Although it sounds as if that may work in Milwaukee’s favor, their starter on the mound has a 3.96 ERA in four starts against the Cubs.
In the last series between these two bitter division rivals, the Brewers swept the Chicago Cubs at Wrigley, their pitching staff held Chicago’s high powered offense to only three runs total in the three games they played September 8-10. With that fresh in their minds.
“They got us last time and they’re not going to go away,” Cubs manager Joe Maddon spoke ahead of Thursday’s game. “I’ve been a fan of theirs for the last two years. I think they’ve done a lot of good things. It’s going to come down to us playing those games well.”
As for Milwaukee, their manager Craig Counsell also talked to the press about the challenge of playing the reigning World Series Champions.
“Look, they’re playing pretty darn good,” Counsell said of the Cubs. “They haven’t lost since we were there, and that’s starting to feel like a while ago. So, you know, they’re putting together a pretty good stretch. This is kind of how it works in September. We’ve lost a couple games, but we’re playing really well through this stretch. I’m proud of how our guys are playing, man. It’d be tough to complain about how we’re playing, that’s for sure.”
Always good to see a mutual level of respect between division rivals in the middle of a pennant race, but on the other hand, let’s hope to see the intensity on the field because after all, isn’t that what we watch for?
This series’s importance can not be stressed enough, these four games could change the landscape of the national league playoff race in one weekend.