The Brewers enjoyed another successful week at home, taking three of four from the Marlins before winning two of three from the Nationals, pushing their NL Central lead to six games entering the Cubs’ Sunday night game against the Diamondbacks.
Milwaukee now heads on the road for the final time of the regular season with a clinch of the division in their sights. The Brewers will first visit St. Louis for a four-game set with the Cardinals before heading to Miami for three more games against the Marlins.
While Milwaukee has had a successful season, the Cardinals have underwhelmed from the start. After starting the season at 2-1, they’ve been under-.500 ever since, currently sitting at 65-83 and in last place in the division.
Despite the poor overall season, they’ve still had a few standouts offensively. Reigning NL MVP Paul Goldschmidt has slashed .271/.365/.449 with 24 homers and 75 RBIs, while fellow All-Star Nolan Arenado is slashing .269/.320/.465 with 26 homers and 90 RBIs. Nolan Gorman leads the team with 27 homers but is currently on the injured list, and catcher Willson Contreras has had a solid first season in St. Louis, slashing .265/.359/.463 with 19 homers and 66 RBIs.
Milwaukee’s offense has relied heavily on catcher William Contreras as well as trade deadline acquisitions like Mark Canha and Carlos Santana. Tyrone Taylor has also been hot as of late, pushing his season stats to .235/.267/.418 with seven homers and 27 RBIs in 71 games.
After trading away a few of the team’s top arms at the trade deadline in Jordan Hicks, Jordan Montgomery, Jack Flaherty, and Genesis Cabrera, the Cardinals have instead relied on some younger arms.
Andre Pallante, Giovanny Gallegos, and Drew VerHagen lead the team in appearances with 58, 55, and 55, respectively, although all three players have ERAs north of 4.00. Ryan Helsley has struggled at times, but he’s 10-for-14 in save opportunities and has a solid 2.61 ERA in 28 games.
Milwaukee’s bullpen has been led by Hoby Milner, Joel Payamps, Elvis Peguero, and Devin Williams all season. Milner leads the team with 68 appearances, pitching to a 1.95 ERA, while Payamps (2.45 ERA in 64 appearances), Peguero (3.38 ERA in 59 appearances), and Williams (1.62 ERA and 35 saves in 58 appearances) have all been anchors on the back end. Abner Uribe has also been a welcome addition after being called up midseason, pitching to a 1.38 ERA in 27 games.
Probable Pitching Matchups
Monday, September 18 @ 6:45 p.m.: Freddy Peralta vs. Adam Wainwright
Peralta has had a huge second half for the Brewers, pitching to a 2.51 ERA with 93 strikeouts in just 64 2⁄3 innings since the All-Star break. His last time out against the Marlins, Peralta went 6 1⁄3 innings, allowing one run on two hits with nine strikeouts in a win. He’s made two starts against the Cardinals this year, going 1-1 with seven earned runs with 11 strikeouts in 11 1⁄3 innings.
In what is expected to be Wainwright’s final season, he’s struggled to a 7.95 ERA and a 4-11 record with only 52 strikeouts in 94 innings. His last start was against the Orioles when he allowed two runs on seven hits and three walks with three strikeouts in five innings.
Tuesday, September 19 @ 6:45 p.m.: TBD vs. Drew Rom
The Brewers haven’t yet announced a starter for the final three games of the series, although it seems likely that a combo of either Colin Rea-Adrian Houser-Wade Miley or Houser-Miley-Corbin Burnes will fill in the back end of the series.
After debuting in late August, Rom is 1-2 with a 5.96 ERA and 18 strikeouts in 22 2⁄3 innings across five starts. His last start against the Orioles went 5 1⁄3 innings, allowing no runs on two hits and three walks with seven strikeouts.
Wednesday, September 20 @ 6:45 p.m.: TBD vs. Zack Thompson
Thompson started the season as a reliever but he’s started in each of his last six appearances. He has a 4.34 ERA with 63 strikeouts across 56 innings this season. In one appearance against the Brewers back in April, he pitched a scoreless inning while allowing two hits and a walk. His last time out against the Phillies, he allowed four runs on five hits and two walks with four strikeouts over five innings.
Thursday, September 21 @ 12:15 p.m.: TBD vs. Miles Mikolas
Mikolas leads the Cardinals with 32 starts this season, pitching to a 4.84 ERA and 118 strikeouts across 182 1⁄3 innings. He allowed five runs on eight hits with two strikeouts across six innings against the Phillies in his last start.
The Cardinals offense is still scary and the Brewers haven’t had nearly as much success on the road as they have at home in recent weeks. I’ll take a 2-2 series split as the Brewers move slightly closer to locking up the NL Central.