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NL Playoff Picture Update: Brewers could face elimination

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It may not be likely, but the Brewers could be eliminated from the playoffs before the weekend

MLB: Milwaukee Brewers at St. Louis Cardinals Jeff Curry-USA TODAY Sports

The Brewers’ path to playoffs at the start of the week was pretty clear — beat the teams ahead of you, and you’ll get in.

Unfortunately, they’ve largely failed to do that, dropping 2 of 3 to the Cincinnati Reds and losing the first game of their pivotal 5-game set in St. Louis on Thursday night.

That’s making their playoff odds extremely murky — Fangraphs’ numbers have them making the expanded postseason tournament just 33.9% of the time, a drastic drop from the 51% odds they had before losing the first game in St. Louis.

Outside factors have also contributed to a grim scenario — as JR Radcliffe points out at the Journal-Sentinel, the Brewers could actually be eliminated from postseason contention if just about everything goes wrong today. For that to happen, the Brewers would have to lose both games of their doubleheader today and the Giants would have to sweep their doubleheader against the Padres.

That would mean the Cardinals would be guaranteed a better record than the Brewers, the Reds would be guaranteed at least a tie (and own the tiebreaker), and the Giants would be guaranteed a better record. Good night.

So, the message is simple — the Brewers need to win at least one game today to make sure they live another day, and they’re going to need some help from the Twins and Padres.

Standings

NL Playoff Race - 9/25/2020

Seed Team (Place-Division) W L PCT
Seed Team (Place-Division) W L PCT
1 Los Angeles (1-W) 40 17 0.702
2 Atlanta (1-E) 34 23 0.596
3 Chicago (1-C) 32 25 0.561
4 San Diego (2-W) 34 22 0.607
5 St. Louis (2-C) 28 26 0.519
6 Miami (2-E) 29 28 0.509
7 Cincinnati (1-WC) 29 27 0.518
8 San Francisco (2-WC) 28 28 0.500
Philadelphia 28 29 0.491
Milwaukee 27 29 0.482
New York 26 31 0.456
Colorado 25 31 0.446

Remaining Schedules

Brewers - 4 @ STL
Reds - 3 @ MIN
Cardinals - 4 vs. MIL
Marlins - 3 @ NYY
Giants - 4 vs. SD
Phillies - 3 @ TB
Mets - 3 @ WAS
Rockies - 4 @ ARI