The Brewers are eliminated from postseason contention

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The Brewers were in first place for something like five months. That and fifty cents gets them a bag of chips and a chance to watch everyone else in the postseason, because today they were eliminated.

The Reds beat the Brewers 5-3 behind six effective innings from a person named David Holmberg, who I am pretty sure is not a real baseball player as opposed to an elaborate put-on, but I can’t prove that. Jay Bruce went 3 for 4. Brandon Phillips homered. Yovani Gallardo gave up ten hits in five innings.

What’s worse: doing about as well as everyone expected you to do before the season, finishing in fourth place and never really contending, or doing what the Brewers did in defying everyone’s expectations and spending almost all of the season at or near the top of the division? Is it better to just miss the stars or never leave orbit? Better to burn out or to fade away?

Maybe it doesn’t matter. Either way, the Brewers will be home for October.

Video: Cubs score run on Pirates’ appeal throw

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2019 has been one long nightmare for the Pirates. They’re in last place in the NL Central, have had multiple clubhouse fights, and can’t stop getting into bench-clearing incidents. The embarrassment continued on Sunday as the club lost 16-6 to the Cubs, suffering a three-game series sweep in Chicago.

One of those 16 runs the Pirates allowed was particularly noteworthy. In the bottom of the third inning, with the game tied at 5-5, the Cubs had runners on first and second with two outs. Tony Kemp hit a triple to right field, allowing both Ben Zobrist and Jason Heyward to score to make it 7-5. The Pirates thought one of the Cubs’ base runners didn’t touch third base on their way home. Reliever Michael Feliz attempted to make an appeal throw to third base, but it was way too high for Erik González to catch, so Kemp scored easily on the error.

The Pirates lost Friday’s game to the Cubs 17-8 and Saturday’s game 14-1. They were outscored 47-15 in the three-game series. According to Baseball Reference, since 1908, the Pirates never allowed 14+ runs in three consecutive games and only did it two games in a row twice before this series, in 1949 and in 1950. The Cubs scored 14+ in three consecutive games just one other time, in 1930.