Chicago Cubs: Making the case for each NL Central contender

(Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images)
(Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images) /
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Chicago Cubs / Christian Yelich
(Photo by John Fisher/Getty Images) /

Chicago Cubs: Making the case for the Milwaukee Brewers

After another Brewers win on Thursday against Cincinnati, (another NL Central team whose playoff hopes are very much alive) the Brewers are tied with the Cubbies for first place in the National League Central. A brutal stint in San Francisco from the Cubs in which they dropped three of four, mixed with the red hot Brewers, who have won 14 of their last 18 games, tightened this race up in a big way.

The Brewers are the biggest threat to the Cubs for first place. It seems that everyone in this division besides Pittsburgh has great offense. The thing that separates Milwaukee from the rest of the division is their pitching. It starts with their ace, big Brandon Woodruff. Brandon is fourth in MLB in ERA (1.42) just behind Jacob deGrom, Lance Lynn and Kevin Gausman. If you break that down, that puts Woodruff in the top three in ERA in the Senior Circuit and easily tops in the NL Central.

We all know about the devastating lefty who resides in Milwaukee’s bullpen, Josh Hader. Hader, otherwise known as the “National League Aroldis Chapman”, and his thunderbolt of an arm are currently tied for fifth in the league in saves along with the Dodgers’ Kenley Jansen and Boston Red Sox closer Matt Barnes. The amount of opposing batters who curse under their breath when Hader begins to warm up must be through the roof. The guy doesn’t just throw gas, he throws diesel, or Tesla battery – however you want to describe it.

“How about Milwaukee’s offense?” Well, they’ve got a former MVP who’s back from injury in Christian Yelich. Yelich hasn’t been in MVP form yet, but some other guys have stepped up in a big way for the Brew Crew. Avisail Garcia is the first player to come to mind as he leads the Brewers in hits, home runs, RBI and total bases. Aside from the great season Garcia has put together, Milwaukee also has two guys with over 100 plate appearances that are both batting over .275 for the season. (Kolten Wong and Omar Narvaez)

Milwaukee has it all right now, they’re playing the best, have the most talent and boast the one thing that other NL Central teams are lacking: pitching.