The Milwaukee Brewers (96-66) did their-selves a huge favor when clinching the second seed in the Playoffs. By doing so, they emerged as the favorites in their National League Divisional Series (NLDS) with the Arizona Diamondbacks (94-68).
On paper, the Brewers and D-Backs appear to be two evenly matched teams, but at home, the Brewers have played great baseball with a league-best 57-24 record.
Follow the jump to find probable pitchers, game-by-game analysis and predictions for the NLDS between Milwaukee and Arizona.
Analysis/Prediction: This game will feature a premiere pitching match-up. Kennedy beat the Brewers with seven shut-out innings earlier in the season, but Gallardo had two wins versus Arizona during the regular season. Even though Arizona won the season series 4-3, the Brewers are too good at home. With the Badgers and Packers adding to a crazy Wisconsin atmosphere, the fans will be amped up in Milwaukee, leading to a game one win for the Brew Crew.
Game 2: Sunday in Milwaukee 3:37 PM
Probable Pitchers: RHP Zack Greinke (16-6) vs. RHP Daniel Hudson (16-12)
Analysis/Prediction: I know Greinke rarely loses at Miller Park, but this Arizona team has some bats who can hit right-handed pitchers pretty well. Miguel Montero is one of those guys who has a .308 average and a 18 homer-runs against righties this season. Greinke keeps it close, but the Brewers offense will come up short as the D-backs take game two to shift home-field temporarily in their favor.
Game 3: Tuesday in Arizona TBA
Probable Pitchers: RHP Shaun Marcum (13-7) vs. LHP Joe Saunders (12-13)
Analysis/Prediction: Marcum has been sensational on the road while Saunders has been inconsistent to say the least. He does have postseason experience, but MVP candidates Ryan Braun and Prince Fielder will be just too much at Chase Field after a sluggish night in game two. Brewers win to take 2-1 lead in the NLDS.
Game 4: Wednesday in Arizona TBA (If necessary)
Probable Pitchers: LHP Randy Wolf (13-10) vs. RHP Josh Collmenter (10-10)
Analysis/Prediction: Collmenter really could be the third guy in the rotation if they needed him to be in game 3, but I think Arizona sends him out in a must-win situation. In his two starts versus the Brewers, he gave up no runs and struck out ten during the regular season. Wolf has been a surprise for the Brewers, but these two teams are too evenly matched to not go five games. Arizona wins with their backs to the wall and force a fifth and final game.
Game 5: Friday in Milwaukee TBA (If necessary)
Probable Pitchers: TBA vs. TBA
Analysis/Prediction: Speculating who will pitch is tough, but I would expect the Brewers to go with Gallardo and the Diamondbacks with Kennedy for another epic pitching dual. I think either team could win this game, but because the Brewers were the best team in the league at home during the regular season, you have to go with Milwaukee in game five at Miller Park.
Overall Prediction: ****Brewers in five games!
How many games do you think the NLDS lasts and who wins? Let me know by commenting below!
Nick Grays is a senior writer at the Sports Bank where he covers the Wisconsin Badgers, Green Bay Packers, and Milwaukee Brewers. He also enjoys to share Fantasy Advice from time-to-time. Follow him on Twitter by clicking here or visit his blog Nick Knows Best.Powered by Sidelines Follow paulmbanks