The Cubs (69-61) just took three or four games in a nice series in Pittsburgh to finish a stretch of 12 consecutive matchups against teams with losing records. They went 8-4 to move a season-high eight over the .500 mark and take hold of the second Wild Card spot. They were not, however, able to gain ground on the squad directly above them in the National League Central.
The Brewers (73-57) come into Wrigley for three big games starting Monday and they are absolutely red-hot with eight consecutive wins to put them four ahead of Chicago in the standings. Their offense has absolutely exploded during the streak, averaging 7.25 runs a game after struggling to score most of the season. Christian Yelich and William Contreras have been big factors at the top of the order.
The Brewers’ rotation suddenly has regained its form from 2022, keyed by Brandon Woodruff‘s return from injury and improved results from Corbin Burnes after a slow start. The other part of the formula for manager Craig Counsell is having a lights-out closer, a role being handled expertly by the outstanding Devin Williams. The changeup wizard has racked up 31 saves with his Airbender in 2023.
The Cubs split a crazy four-game series in Milwaukee in July that featured Ian Happ throwing out two potential walk-off runs at home plate, a separate 9th-inning win, and another contest the Brew Crew actually did walk off.
There is not a lot of daylight between these two and it should be another very hard-fought matchup. This is not a good time to be facing the Brewers when they are the best they have been all year. The one thing you can say about the North Siders in 2023 is they are not afraid of anyone no matter how well they are playing.
There is no doubt that Wrigley Field is going to have a playoff feel over the next three days. After a few years without it, it is definitely a refreshing change. Now let’s see if the Cubs can make some noise by winning the series and really making it a race.
Game Time and Broadcast Info
- Monday, August 28 at 7:05pm CT on Marquee.
- Tuesday, August 29 at 7:05pm CT on TBS and Marquee.
- Wednesday, August 30 at 1:20pm CT on Marquee.
What to Watch For
- Seiya Suzuki had seven hits against the Pirates, including four for extra bases.
- Cody Bellinger has five hits and seven RBI in his last two games.
- The Cubs are 16-8 in the month of August with three to play.
- Dansby Swanson is in a major slump with a .171 batting average since August 1.