Scoreboard Watching II
The Brewers magic number remains at 11 but on WSW we crunched the numbers every which way and for all intents and purposes the NL Central is almost locked down.
For the nervous Nellies out there cursing me for jinxing it consider this: not including the Philadelphia series, the Brewers have eight home games remaining and all eight are against teams below .500. At worst the Brewers go 4-4 in those eight games. Then factor in a conservative prediction of one win in each series against the Phillies, Cubs and Reds. That slices the magic number down to four, meaning St. Louis must go 17-3 in their remaining games with three against Atlanta and four at Philadelphia. Feel better?
However, even if the Brewers wrap up the division early the scoreboard watching should continue right down to the wire. As of 10 p.m. Tuesday the Brewers were seven games behind Philadelphia. To get serious about the Brewers earning the best record in the NL the Crew would need to take at least three of four from the Phils later this week. Just for some potential drama, the Phillies end the season with three on the road against second place Atlanta.
But catching the Phillies may not be the most pressing concern right now. The surging Arizona Diamondbacks stand only three back of the Brewers for second-best record in the NL as I write this. The D-Backs have feasted on the bottom feeders of the NL. During their nine game winning streak Arizona swept San Diego and Colorado. The Diamondbacks still have eight more games against those two after Tuesday. So their September schedule is a breeze outside of a three game series versus San Francisco. Thus even with a tight grip on the NL Central lead (and my Clinch Day prediction of September 17 still stands), there could still be much to play for in the final week of the season.