A capsule look at the Braves-Brewers playoff series
A capsule look at the best-of-five National League Division Series between the Atlanta Braves and Milwaukee Brewers:
Schedule: (All times EDT) Game 1, Friday, at Milwaukee, 4:37 p.m. (TBS); Game 2, Saturday, at Milwaukee, 5:07 p.m. (TBS); Game 3, Monday, Oct. 11, at Atlanta, TBD (TBS); x-Game 4, Tuesday, Oct. 12, at Atlanta, TBD (TBS); x-Game 5, Thursday, Oct. 14, at Milwaukee, TBD (TBS).
Season Series: Split 3-3.
Playoff Entry: NL East champion.
Manager: Brian Snitker (sixth season).
Projected Rotation: RHP Charlie Morton (14-6, 3.34 ERA, 216 Ks in 185 2/3 IP), LHP Max Fried (14-7, 3.04, 158 Ks in 165 2/3 IP), RHP Ian Anderson (9-5, 3.58, 124 Ks in 128 1/3 IP).
Top Hitters: 1B Freddie Freeman (.300, 31 HRs, 83 RBIs, .896 OPS), 3B Austin Riley (.303, 33, 107, .898 OPS), 2B Ozzie Albies (.259, 30, 106, 40 doubles, 20 SBs), CF Adam Duvall (.228, 38, 113 with Miami and Atlanta), RF Jorge Soler (.223, 27, 70 with Kansas City and Atlanta).
Top Relievers: LHP Will Smith (3-7, 3.44 ERA, 37/43 saves, 87 Ks, 67 IP), RHP Luke Jackson (2-2, 1.98), LHP Tyler Matzek (0-4, 2.57), RHP Chris Martin (2-4, 3.95, 1 save).
October Glance: The Braves won their fourth consecutive division title and 21st overall, most in the majors. ... Atlanta won 14 straight division crowns in completed seasons from 1991-2005, including the first three during that run in the NL West. ... Atlanta advanced to the NL Championship Series last season, losing to the Dodgers in Game 7. ... Morton is 7-3 with a 3.38 ERA in 13 career postseason games, including 12 starts, with Pittsburgh, Houston and Tampa Bay. ... The Braves had a losing record most of the first half and for the last time on Aug. 3, at 53-54. ... The 88 wins matched the Braves’ fewest in a season they won a division title (2001). ... The Braves closed the season with a 5-0 shutout of the New York Mets. It was their 18th shutout, second in the majors to the Brewers’ 19. ... Atlanta remade its outfield at midseason after losing Ronald Acuña Jr. to a season-ending knee injury and Marcell Ozuna to legal troubles. GM Alex Anthopoulos acquired outfielders Joc Pederson, Eddie Rosario, Duvall and Soler near the July 30 trade deadline. ... Freeman led the NL with a career-high 120 runs. Duvall led the NL with 113 RBIs. Riley was second with 107 and Albies tied for third with 106. ... The Braves won eight of their last nine games, including a three-game sweep that put away second-place Philadelphia, to close the regular season.
Playoff Entry: NL Central champion.
Manager: Craig Counsell (seventh season).
Projected Rotation: RHP Corbin Burnes (11-5, 2.43 ERA, 234 Ks in 167 IP), RHP Brandon Woodruff (9-10, 2.56, 211 Ks in 179 1/3 IP), RHP Freddy Peralta (10-5, 2.81, 195 Ks in 144 1/3 IP).
Top Hitters: SS Willy Adames (.262, 25 HRs, 73 RBIs with Rays and Brewers), RF Avisaíl García (.262, 29, 86), 3B Eduardo Escobar (.253, 28, 90 with Diamondbacks and Brewers), INF Luis Urías (.249, 23, 75).
Top Relievers: LHP Josh Hader (4-2, 1.23 ERA, 34/35 saves, 102 Ks in 58 2/3 IP), RHP Brad Boxberger (5-4, 3.34, 83 Ks in 64 2/3 IP), LHP Brent Suter (12-5, 3.07), RHP Hunter Strickland (3-2, 2.61 for Rays, Angels and Brewers).
October Glance: The Brewers are in the playoffs for a franchise-record fourth consecutive season but have never won the World Series. They made their lone appearance in 1982. … This marks the first time the Brewers have faced the Braves in the postseason. … Before moving to Atlanta in 1966, the Braves called Milwaukee home from 1953-65. ... The Brewers were below .500 when they acquired Adames and went 74-44 after his arrival. Adames batted just .197 in 41 games with Tampa Bay but hit .285 with 20 homers and 58 RBIs in 99 games with Milwaukee. … Urías hit 23 homers this season after never homering in 2020. … García set career highs in homers and RBIs. … The Brewers have three All-Star starting pitchers in Burnes, Woodruff and Peralta. … Hader is unscored upon in his last 21 appearances. … The Brewers won the division without getting much offense from Christian Yelich, the 2018 NL MVP. Yelich missed much of the first half with a lower back strain and ended up hitting .248 with 9 homers and 51 RBIs in 117 games. … RHP Devin Williams, the 2020 NL Rookie of the Year and the Brewers’ main setup man, won’t be available for this series. Williams fractured his pitching hand when he punched a wall the night the Brewers clinched the NL Central title. … The Brewers were one win short of the franchise record. They went 96-66 in 2011 and 96-67 in 2018. … Milwaukee was 50-31 on the road to set a franchise record for road victories. … The Brewers had at least a share of the division lead since June 19 and took over sole possession of first place for good on June 25. … The Brewers used 61 players this season, breaking the franchise record of 53 set in 1969 (when they were the Seattle Pilots) and 2018. … The Brewers reached MLB’s expanded postseason last year despite never getting above .500. They were swept in two games in the first round by the eventual World Series champion Los Angeles Dodgers.
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