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Monday's (Late) Frosty Mug

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Wow. Just wow.

Brewers 5, Cubs 1

Win Probability Graph
BR Box Score

Marlins 6, Mets 1
Win Probability Graph
BR Box Score

Cubs 7, Brewers 3

Win Probability Graph
BR Box Score

Mets 2, Marlins 0
Win Probability Graph
BR Box Score

Brewers 3, Cubs 1

Win Probability Graph
BR Box Score

Marlins 4, Brewers 2
Win Probability Graph
BR Box Score

Ladies and gentlemen, your 2008 Milwaukee Brewers, winners of the NL Wild Card. You can get your Wild Card gear here, but I'm saving my budget and waiting to see if there's NL Champion or even World Series Champion gear yet to come.

Of course, just about every Brewer blog under the sun (and some non-Brewer blogs) has a celebratory post today, and since I'm in a celebratory mood, I'm going to link them all:

45,299 fans were there to see it yesterday, giving the Brewers a season total of 3,068,458. Of course, if that wasn't enough celebration for you, you can celebrate with the team from 4-8 today at the Summerfest grounds. I wish I could.

I'm not going to link to every photo shot at yesterday's game, although I could. Instead, I'll give you my favorite three, and you can click through to any of them and scroll through the rest if you want.

After the game, Tom H. got quotes from Doug Melvin, Ben Sheets, Dale Sveum, Dave Bush and Craig Counsell.

Ok, let's talk about CC Sabathia for a moment. Ken Rosenthal talked to him after the game about pitching on short rest and everything he's done to help this team win. Scott Miller says Sabathia delivered a postseason to Milwaukee. Rosenthal ranked Sabathia 4th on his NL MVP ballot (and ranked Doug Melvin 3rd for Executive of the Year). Rosenthal has apparently been typing non-stop since the end of action yesterday, because he also wrote that the bold move of firing Ned Yost paid off.

At most recent count, Ryan Braun ranks seventh in the voting for NL MVP over at Beyond the Box Score. Go cast your vote. Meanwhile, The Hardball Times noted a lot more Braun jerseys than Fielders in the crowd at Miller Park. I own a Braun jersey too, but not a Fielder, mainly because I know Braun will still be a Brewer for a few more years.

Remember when we all signed up to pee our pants if the Brewers made the playoffs? I don't remember if I signed up or not, but I'm not ruining my pants. Here's a youtube video of someone who actually did.

Two-Fisted Slopper wonders if everything has happened for a reason, and all the terrible play Wes Helms showed in Milwaukee was just part of the building process towards his home run for the Marlins yesterday.

So now, the Phillies. Cole Hamels will pitch Game One on Wednesday. Todd Zolecki of the Philadelphia Inquirer is my favorite Phillies blogger, and he has a quick series preview here and a quick analysis of the Brewer pitching staff here.

MLB Playoff Odds has the Brewers at 45.7% to win their series with the Phillies, 20.5% to win the NLCS and 9.4% to win the World Series. All three of those numbers are the lowest among the 4 NL playoff teams. Jon Heyman is predicting a Cubs World Series win. I'm predicting I'll get a few more opportunities this year to roll my eyes while linking a Jon Heyman column. In other predictions: Crawfish Boxes has the Phillies winning in the first round, and Purple Row has the Brewers losing to the Rays in the World Series.

If the Brewers/Phillies matchup isn't intriguing enough for you, The Junkball Blues handicaps the 2008 Brewers/1982 Brewers matchup.

Phil Rogers ranked the Brewers 6th in his new power rankings.

On injuries:

Rocco Baldelli was reported to have muscular dystrophy over the weekend, but has since denied it.
Josh Beckett strained an oblique muscle while throwing a side session and won't pitch until at least game 3 of the ALDS.
Francisco Cordero had surgery over the weekend to remove a bone spur from his right foot. He was able to do it this early because he plays on a team that didn't make the playoffs.
Dodgers RP Hong-Chih Kuo will be left off the NLDS roster with numbness in his fingers.
Giants SP Noah Lowry will undergo surgery to remove a bone spur in his elbow.

So now, for the first time in 26 years, we as Brewer fans get to try to re-work our schedules to catch must-see baseball games at bizarre times in the afternoon on a work day. Bugs & Cranks has an open letter to baseball regarding the situation (potentially NSFW language).

The end of the regular season also means the coaching carousel is in full swing. So far, I haven't heard about any managers moving on, but the Tigers fired their pitching and bullpen coaches, the Nationals fired five coaches from their staff after losing 102 games, and the winds of change are starting to blow in Texas. Joe Torre's job is probably safe in Los Angeles, even though Nomar Garciaparra managed yesterday's game.

Speaking of Torre, he's one of three current MLB managers The Hardball Times thinks are locks for the Hall of Fame.

Jayson Stark has his Year in Review up. I could give or take most of his award voting, but the quirky quotes and box score lines make it a must read if you're as nerdy as I am.

Among players over 24 years old, Russell Branyan had the highest MLE (Major League Equivalent) stat line this season. Second place fell to Nelson Cruz.

So Cliff Lee was scratched from the final game of the season yesterday, giving him 22 wins to finish the season and an almost certain AL Cy Young. Tangotiger wants to know what you think he's worth. I know most people will pay him more, but I had a hard time cracking $10 mil/year for a guy who's only had one good season.

Oh, and Brad Nelson and Joe Dillon are probably more concerned with their current jobs, but Baseball Analysts says they'd be candidates to spend 2009 in Japan.

Drink up.