It’ll go down as a September to remember. The Milwaukee Brewers clinched at least a wildcard playoff spot for the second straight year, capping things off with a 9-2 win over the Cincinnati Reds at Great American Ballpark on Wednesday night.
It’s the 6th straight win, the 17th in the last 19 games and a 19-4 month of September for the Brewers, who came from five-games behind the Chicago Cubs in the National League wildcard race. They also did it after losing Christian Yelich to a season ending knee injury, improving to 12-2 since losing their MVP.
The division leading Cardinals lost again on Wednesday as the Brewers climbed to within a game and a half of St. Louis. If the Brewers can win today, they’ll move to within a game of the Cardinals, who have the day off. The Brewers also trail the Nationals by one-game in the chase for the top wildcard spot.
Ryan Braun, who clubbed a solo home run in the series opening 4-2 win, clubbed a grand slam homer in game two last night. It’s the 8th grand slam home run in Braun’s career. It was part of the Brewers six-run first inning. Eric Thames and Keston Hiura also homered for the Brewers in the victory.
Starter Jordan Lyles (12-8) earned the win, pitching five innings before giving way to the bullpen. Four relievers pitched one inning each to cap off the victory. Lyles went 7-1 in 11 starts for the Brewers with a 2.45 ERA.
It’ll be the sixth overall playoff appearance for the Brewers. Their only other back-to-back appearances came in 1981-82 with Robin Yount and Paul Molitor.
Chase Anderson (7-4) pitches the series finale for the Brewers today. He is 5-3 in 14 career starts against the Reds but 0-1 with a 5.51 ERA in three starts this season. Following today’s game (11:35 a.m.), the Brewers head to Denver to close out the regular season with a three game series with the Colorado Rockies.