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Brewers 6, Padres 7: What an Appropriate Way to End the Season

Why not go out with the Bullpen taking the loss?

Mike McGinnis - Getty Images

Win: Tommy Layne (2-0)
Loss: Jim Henderson (1-3)
Save: Luke Gregerson (9)

HR: Denorfia (8), Maybin (8)

MVP: Josh Stinson (.146 WPA)
LVP: Jim Henderson (-.346 WPA)

Fangraphs Win Expectancy Chart

If you had told me eight months ago that the Brewers would win just 83 games this season, I would have been mildly disappointed. If you had told me two months ago that the Brewers would win 83 games this season, I would have called you wildly optimistic.

The Brewers did not make the playoffs. When the MLB season started, I think many of us thought Milwaukee had a good shot at the postseason. A few months later, I'm not sure anyone thought they had a chance in hell. It's been the narrative for the past week or so, but it's just so true: It's absolutely incredible that this Brewers team came back from the depths and won 83 games while taking a true run at a playoff spot. We all know what happened. I could rehash what we have been saying the past month.

But we all just have to be so proud of this team. We have to be excited for the future. Nearly the entire core of this team is due back for 2013. We have to think that the Brewers could very well be in the mix for a division spot next season. We have to think that they have proven they will be a good team.

We have to hope that they figure out a way to improve the damned bullpen. After Josh Stinson started and gave up one run in four innings, Milwaukee had a 6-1 lead courtesy of a big offensive start. Then the Brewers went to the pen. Kameron Loe gave up two runs in one inniing, then Brandon Kintzler gave up two runs in one inning, then Jim Henderson gave up two runs in one inning. When it was all said and done, the Brewers were losing 7-6 and never recovered.

It's completely appropriate. Of course this had to be the way the Brewers ended 2012. With how many wins the bullpen cost this team, they had to do it one more time. This bullpen cost the Brewers a playoff spot. I wouldn't be surprised if all the relievers came together and one of them just said, "Well, whatdya say fellas? One more time?" and they just gave up meatball after meatball until the team was losing.

The pitching staff only struck out six batters, as well. That gives them 1402 on the season, falling two short of the 2003 Cubs season record of 1404 strikeouts. It's a shame to come so close and not reach that goal.

The Brewers scored one run in each of the first two innings. In the first inning, Rickie Weeks singled, stole second, then was driven in by Aramis Ramirez. In the second inning, Carlos Gomez singled, moved to second on a throwing error, stole third, then scored on a groundout. I love Carlos Gomez. The Brewers then scored four runs in the third, including a Travis Ishikawa three-run double.

After that third inning, however, the Brewers did not pick up another hit. Like the site tagline says, the team probably could have used some insurance runs. The bullpen may have blown the game, but the offense didn't exactly throw much help their way, either. Rickie Weeks and Carlos Gomez were the only Milwaukee players to reach base twice, with a single and a walk apiece. They each also stole a base. Also stealing a base today: Aramis Ramirez. That give Ramirez nine on the season, three more than his previous career high in 2001, and seven more than any season since then. When the Brewers decided to run more this season, they weren't kidding around.

The Brewers play nobody tomorrow. There is no first pitch scheduled. It's fall, and the Brewers are done playing baseball in 2012. But! There are only four months and 12 days--that's just 135 days!--until position players report to spring training.

As always, we'll have all the Brewers content you can handle here. I'm already planning on discussing the bullpen at length. Because who doesn't get enough of the bullpen talk?

Good season, Brewers. We'll see you soon.