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Monday, June 13, 2011

Right Where They Want To Be

Today is a good day in Brewer Nation. Led by solid pitching and freakish play by Prince Fielder, the hottest team in baseball swept the Cardinals this weekend and grabbed first place in the NL Central. The Brewers now head to Chicago for a four game series against the downtrodden Cubs with a chance to pad their meager half game division lead.

The Brew Crew now sit ten games above .500 with a record of 38-28. The last time that happened, and the last time they led the NL Central, was June of 2009. This serves as a reminder that a lot still needs to happen for the Brewers to win their division, since they ultimately finished the 2009 season 80-82, falling short of a winning record and playoff birth. Granted, this isn't 2009, and the Brewers pitching is much, much stronger than it was back then, but a strong position in June in no way guarantees success over a whole season.

The Brewers have shown an impressive ability to win over the past few weeks, and they've positioned themselves well for a challenging interleague schedule. They face the Major League leading Red Sox in Boston this weekend before returning home to host the Rays. After that they host the Twins and then travel to New York to face the Yankees.

These next few series will be tough and will show whether the Brewers can hold their own against some of the best teams in the Majors. Indeed, these series could even make the difference as to whether the Brewers make the playoffs or not, since the Cardinals and Reds don't face all of the powerhouses of the AL East. One thing, though, is certain: heading into a challenging stretch, the Brewers are right where they want to be.

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