D-backs, Brewers meet again at Chase Field
PHOENIX -- The last time the D-backs played at Chase Field it was against the Brewers, who went on to win Game 5 of the NL Division Series in Milwaukee, ending the D-backs' season. With the Brewers in town once again, the D-backs are reminded of how they fell short in 2011.
"We owe them," Arizona manager Kirk Gibson said before Tuesday's game. "They got us that time (in the NLDS). We've got to get them back."
The D-backs and Brewers typically square off for just two series each season, but there seems to be a bit of a rivalry developing. Between the NLDS and D-backs fans' perceived Home Run Derby snub of Upton by then Brewer Prince Fielder last year, there's enough to see why D-backs fans might get a little riled up for a series with the Brewers.
Then of course there are fans' sentiments toward a couple players in particular. There's Nyjer Morgan, whose 10th inning single ended the D-backs' season last October and whose boisterous personality often rankles opposing fans. And there's Ryan Braun, who this offseason faced a 50-game suspension for a positive test for a banned substance. That test took place during the NLDS, and Braun winning his appeal of the test might not sit well with D-backs fans.
Any rivalry, though, is probably more intense in the stands than on the field. Gibson called last season's playoff series "clean" and "hard fought" Tuesday and also expressed great respect for Brewers manager Ron Roenicke.
"We've known each other for years just in the game, but when you compete against somebody like that, it gives you a better appreciation for who they are deep rooted," Gibson said. "Ron stands for the game the right way. It kind of puts a little extra on the line every time we play them."
The games Tuesday and Wednesday may not count in the standings, but Gibson said there's no less desire for a win.
"I like beating them any day starting tonight," Gibson said.