The Milwaukee Brewers edged out the Cubs by a score of 4-3 on Monday to give themselves some hope in the NL Central. Christian Yelich hustled to beat out a potential double-play ball with the bases juiced in the bottom of the 9th. A run got in and that’s all the Brewers needed to get the W. They still have a lot of work to do if they want to catch the Cubs in the division. The Brewers pulled within 4 games of the Cubs heading into Tuesday.
Things could start to get pretty interesting with another win tonight for the Brewers. If they miss out on catching the Cubs to take the NL Central, the Brewers will likely have a wildcard to fallback on. However, that race is so tight that those two slots could go to anyone. There are three teams sitting on the outside within 2 games. The other wildcard is currently in possession of the Cardinals. It could be an all NL Central showdown in the play-in game.
The Brewers had 1st under wraps for the majority of the first-half of the season. However, it felt like that it certainly wasn’t a sure thing, even when the Brewers were in full control and the Cubs sputtering. The Brewers had their bullpen working at an elite level then. But, they’ve regressed and it’s pretty clear why they aren’t in 1st anymore.
The relief effort could be better for the Brewers in the second-half, which they will definitely need to go far in the postseason. Nevertheless, everyone has been doing their part the last few days, with 5 wins in five of their last six games. They will look for it to continue behind Wade Miley this evening, while the Cubs counter with Mike Montgomery. It’s a battle of lefties in Milwaukee. Get our free Cubs vs. Brewers pick and the rest of our writeup below.
Chicago Cubs vs. Milwaukee Brewers Pick
Mike Montgomery (4-4, 3.82 ERA) vs. Wade Miley (2-2, 2.18 ERA)
Mike Montgomery was thrust into a starting responsibility out of necessity. The Cubs had to look elsewhere with the injury to Yu Darvish. They ultimately settled on Montgomery who has done a serviceable job for the Cubs. He’s done about as good of a job as anyone could have hoped for. Montgomery isn’t better than Darvish at full-strength, but as a plan B, it’s worked out well enough. He enters Milwaukee on Tuesday with an ERA of 3.82 and 2.87 WHIP in his last three outings. Montgomery has allowed 1 or no runs in four of his previous six appearances. The road has been kinder to him as well, with a 3.36 ERA as opposed to 4.43 at Wrigley. Milwaukee have been okay against Montgomery, hitting .242 against him in 124 at-bats.
Wade Miley has been up for the challenge as well, but there are a couple misleading stats going against him in this matchup. Miley holds a 2.76 ERA at home, which is nothing to complain about, but he’s had more lives than a cat in Milwaukee. While his ERA is strong, he’s been filling up the bases too often. Miley owns a 1.67 WHIP and .367 OBA despite a solid ERA. In his last start at home, he gave up 10 hits and a walk but got out of it with just 2 runs allowed against the Pirates. Prior to that, he gave up 3 runs on 5 hits and 3 walks in 5 innings. That’s likely not going to work against a lineup like the Cubs. After dropping a nail biter yesterday, I like the Cubs to return the favor Tuesday night.