The Brewers host the Braves on Friday in Game 1 of the National League Division Series.
- Game 1: Friday, October 8, 4:37 p.m. ET, TBS
- Game 2: Saturday, October 9, 5:07 pm ET, TBS
- Game 3: Monday, October 11, 1:07 p.m. ET, TBS
- Game 4: Tuesday, October 12, TBA, TBS (if necessary)
- Game 5: Thursday, October 14, TBA, TBS (if necessary)
Numbers to know:
Initial ERA: 3.13
ERA in bullpen: 4.02
Runs scored: 738
Initial ERA: 3.84
Runs scored: 790
Seasonal series: Tied 3-3
I’m sure you’ve heard the saying, “Defense wins championships.” If that’s the case, then Milwaukee has the upper hand. The Brewers have three – yes, you read that right – THREE starters who spent most of the season in the NL Cy Young conversation. Just look at these brilliant ERAs: Corbin Burnes (2.43); Brandon Woodruff (2.56); and Freddy Peralta (2.81). And the later part of his rotation brings the cumulative ERA to just 3.13. The Brewers also have the best closer in the game, Josh Hader, to close the door when they have the upper hand, though they won’t have bullpen stud Devin Williams, who broke his hand hitting a wall in anger. UPS.
Offensively, the Brewers are nothing to get excited about. They hit .233, tied for third-lowest in the league. Willy Adames led the team with a .285 average and a .521 slugging, while former NL MVP Christian Yelich hit just .248 and a .373 slugging. Avisail Garcia led the team with 29 home runs, while Loranzo Cain led the team with 13 stolen bases.
It’s the opposite story offensively for the Braves. Even without superstar Ronald Acuña, Jr., the Braves continued to crash. Atlanta hit .244, tied for eighth-best in the league, and has not one, not two, not three, but FOUR players with more than 30 home runs. The Braves are in the top five in the league in both home runs and slugging.
Atlanta’s pitching has been anchored by veteran Charlie Morton (3.30 ERA) and left-hander Max Fried (3.10 ERA), while Ian Anderson (3.58 ERA) and Huascar Ynoa (4.05 ERA) have had their ups and downs. The bullpen is a bit shaky with closer Will Smith’s increasing walk rate and the acquisition of trade deadline Richard Rodriguez being a bit prone to home runs.
This comes down to a great pitch versus a great hit. The Brewers ‘right pitching should limit Freddie Freeman’s left-handed hitting, while keeping right power in check throughout the Braves’ lineup. The good news for the Brewers is that hitters aren’t hitting better than .201 against their top three. If Atlanta can’t get the bat on the ball, the damage it can do is limited. Even with a mediocre offense, I think the Brewers win this series in five.
CHOOSE: Brewers at 5.
Futures for the National League pennant
The Giants host the Dodgers starting Friday night for the first of a five-game series.
- Game 1: Friday, October 8, 9:37 p.m. ET, TBS
- Game 2: Saturday, October 9, 9:07 p.m. ET, TBS
- Game 3: Monday, October 11, 9:37 p.m. ET, TBS
- Game 4: Tuesday, October 12, 6:07 p.m. ET, TBS (if necessary)
- Game 5: Thursday, October 14, 6:07 PM ET, TBS (if needed)
Numbers to know:
Initial ERA: 3.44
ERA in bullpen: 2.99
Runs scored: 804
Initial ERA: 2.93
ERA in bullpen: 3.16
Runs scored: 830
Seasonal series: 10-9 giants
The best baseball team of the entire year was the San Francisco Giants. How we all write it, right? The Giants took an early advantage in the division and held it for most of the season. Absolutely no one saw it coming. The average age of the Giants? Oh, only 30.3 years.
Behind the strong seasons of veterans Kevin Gausman (2.81 ERA), Anthony DeSclafani (3.17 ERA), Alex Wood (3.83 ERA) and Johnny Cueto (4.08 ERA), and young Logan Webb (2.97 ERA) , the Giants pitching staff dominated the opponents. batters, allowing a .238 batting average against. And the bullpen? Not a big deal, just the lowest ERA in the league.
San Francisco’s offense benefited from a resurgent season of Buster Posey and years of careers from veterans Brandon Crawford and Brandon Belt. Sadly Belt will miss the postseason due to a broken thumb. Adding Kris Bryant to the lineup at the trade deadline gave this Giants team the added swagger it needed to clinch the NL West crown. Overall, San Francisco ranks in the top seven in the league in home runs, runs, RBIs, batting average, OBP and slugging.
The Dodgers, despite having the second-best record in baseball, had to fight their way into the NLDS and they did it in dramatic fashion with Chris Taylor walking in the ninth inning against the Cardinals on Wednesday.
The Dodgers’ starting rotation has the lowest ERA in all of baseball at 2.93, and features Cy Young candidates Max Scherzer (2.46 ERA) and Walker Buehler (2.47 ERA), as well as Julio Urias (2.96). ). Although they won’t have Clayton Kershaw and Trevor Bauer, the Dodgers are incredibly deep at the position and can easily open up Tony Gonsolin (2.86 ERA) or David Price (3.92 ERA). Meanwhile, relievers have a 3.16 ERA, the second-best in the league behind only the Giants.
The Dodgers are a monster, and they are equally, if not more, deep on offense. Los Angeles is in the top five in the league in home runs, runs, RBIs and OBP. Max Muncy led the team with 36 home runs, but he’s unlikely to play in this series due to a dislocated elbow. But the Dodgers still have Mookie Betts, Corey Seager, Trea Turner, Justin Turner, Will Smith, Cody Bellinger, Austin Barnes and AJ Pollock who can all have big games. The defending World Series champions are a force to be reckoned with.
This showdown promises to be everything we hoped it would be: two completely dominant rivals meeting for the first time in the postseason. It’s been a great story all season, and this series will deliver. I know we’ve been saying this all season, but the Dodgers are the deepest team in baseball and San Francisco can’t go on like this. Also, I read somewhere that the Giants are contractually bound to lose the World Series in odd-numbered years. The Dodgers take it in five.
CHOOSE: Dodgers in 5
Futures for NL Pennant:
• 2021 ALDS Betting Previews, Odds & Picks
• World Series Futures and 2021 MLB Pennants
Eddie is an Australian news reporter with over 9 years in the industry and has published on Forbes and tech crunch.