The San Diego Padres fly from Denver to Milwaukee for a meeting with the Brewers at Miller Park. It’s an important series for the Brewers, who are alive and well in the National League wildcard chase. The Brewers are just one game behind the Cubs for the final wildcard in the NL. With only two weeks left in the regular season, every game gets amplified significantly. The Brewers have been hovering on the outside looking in as the first team out.
With the Mets trailing by 3.5 games, it’s increasingly looking like a race between the Brewers, Cubs, and Nationals. The Nationals currently own a 1.5-game lead over the Cubs for homefield in the Wild Card Game. Philadelphia have to be the most disappointing of the bunch.
They’re 4.5 back and are carrying around Bryce Harper’s contract. After one year in of Harper in Philadelphia, we can’t say whether it was worth it or not, but the Phillies were expected to at least reach the Wild Card Game this year. Challenging the Braves was the goal, but the main and secondary goal have been off the mark. There’s still time for a late push for the final wildcard, though.
The Phillies have been nothing but a huge disappointment this season, so don’t bet on it happening. If the Brewers leapfrog the Cubs and lock in a wildcard, they’re going to have to do it without Christian Yelich. As you know by now, their MVP bat broke his kneecap and is lost for the season.
The onus falls on others get it done. Milwaukee had a nice weekend in St. Louis without Yelich, as Ryan Braun answered the call for a grand slam to win two out of three games. So far, the team is stepped it up in the absence of Yelich. We’ll see if it carries over on Monday against the Padres. Zach Davies will get the nod against Garrett Richards in this one. Head below for our free Padres vs. Brewers pick.
San Diego Padres vs. Milwaukee Brewers Pick:
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Garrett Richards will make his first start of the season on September 16th. So, he’s going to be able to get his feet wet for a minute before heading into the offseason. When he is healthy, Richards can be an affective pitcher. He proved that in Anaheim over the course of eight seasons. Since 2016, though, Richards has missed a lot of time. He made six starts in 2016 and 2017, before getting 18 starts in last season. Once again, though, the injury bug hit him and he hasn’t been able to appear in a game until tonight.
The Padres essentially want to see what they have with him. He was solid with a 3.66 ERA last season, and the season before, Richards owned an ERA of 2.28 before exiting for the year. It’s no good if he can’t stay on the hill, though. You can be Jacob deGrom and it doesn’t do the team any good on the IL. In any event, you have to feel for Richards. He really could have developed into more of a factor in his career. The former Sooner got some work in at the minor league level before coming up to the majors.
Richards struggled mightily in his rehab stints. He posted an ERA of 10.61 and 2.46 WHIP five starts. Richards was getting beaten up against minor league hitters and will try his luck against the Brewers on the road in Milwaukee here. He will have a tough matchup against Zach Davies, who Davies enters on fire, with an ERA of 2.57 and 1.07 WHIP in his last three trips to the bump. The Brewers have found success against Richards as well, having hit him for a .294 batting average in 34 at-bats. Don’t expect the Padres to be too excited to be in Milwaukee. Conversely, look for the Brewers to play a determined game with their eyes set on getting into the postseason.