Brewers closer to clinchingWisconsin Sports
-- The Milwaukee Brewers’ magic number is down to three, after a 5-1 victory over the Chicago Cubs at Wrigley Field last night.
CHICAGO - The Milwaukee Brewers’ magic number is down to three, after a 5-1 victory over the Chicago Cubs at Wrigley Field last night.
The earliest the Brewers can clinch the National League Central is late tomorrow afternoon, while they’re off. Second-place Saint Louis stayed in the race by winning an 11-6 slug-fest over the New York Mets. The Brewers could win their first division title in 29 years tomorrow if they win their regular season road finale over the Cubs this afternoon, and the Cardinals lose to the Mets tonight and tomorrow. Otherwise, the Brewers could win the crown in front of their home fans this weekend against Florida.
Milwaukee won last night’s game by scoring four times in the third inning. Shaun Marcum and Corey Hart hit back-to-back doubles. Nyjer Morgan then singled Hart home. Ryan Braun and Rickie Weeks capped the rally with RBI singles. Weeks drove in two runs on the night. Prince Fielder walked twice, and exceeded 100 free passes for the third year in a row. Marcum avoided losing three straight starts for the first time in his career. He struck out seven in eight innings to improve to 13-7. Marcum gave up a run on five hits, and his only mistake was a solo homer by Starlin Castro. Castro has now reached base in 33 straight games, the most by a Cubs’ shortstop since 1929. Randy Wells took the loss. He’s 7-5. Cubs’ third baseman Aramis Ramirez left in the sixth inning with a strained quad muscle.
The Brewers have 91 season victories for the first time since 1992. And they extended their lead over Arizona to two games for home-field advantage in the first round of the playoffs. Left-hander Randy Wolf will start today’s series finale at Wrigley against Chicago right-hander Matt Garza.