Resurgent pitching staff fuels Brewers’ playoff push

A resurgent pitching staff has already powered the Milwaukee Brewers to a second consecutive playoff appearance. Now they’re chasing an improbable division title.

The Brewers enter Friday’s action just a game behind the first-place St. Louis Cardinals heading into their final series of the regular season, a three-game set with the Colorado Rockies.

Milwaukee’s pitching staff has a combined 2.75 ERA in 24 games this month after posting a 4.58 ERA from March-August. The group hasn’t allowed more than three runs in a single contest since Sept. 15, a string of 10 straight games.

Only three teams since 1950 have orchestrated more dramatic September turnarounds. The 2010 Brewers pulled off a similar transformation but went just 14-13 in September, missing the playoffs.

Year Team March-Aug. Sept. Diff.
2000 Oakland Athletics 4.98 2.88 -2.10
2004 Baltimore Orioles 5.04 3.01 -2.03
2010 Milwaukee Brewers 4.92 2.96 -1.96
2019 Milwaukee Brewers 4.68 2.75 -1.93
2010 San Francisco Giants 3.68 1.78 -1.90

Zach Davies, the Brewers’ starter for Friday’s series opener, has a 1.96 ERA over his past five starts after posting a 9.41 ERA in five starts prior.

Davies’ opponent batting average has fallen to .190 over his last five, but the Rockies will test that number.

Colorado’s Garrett Hampson and Nolan Arenado have been two of the best hitters in the National League this month. Hampson is batting .361, which ranks second, while Arenado is in fifth at .342.

Arenado has a career .710 slugging percentage in 146 plate appearances against the Brewers, which ranks third all-time amongst players with at least 125 plate appearances against Milwaukee.

Other notes:

— The Brewers are 7-3 at Coors Field since 2016 and have averaged 5.2 runs per game over that span.

— Opposing lefties have a .413 on-base percentage against Rockies starter Antonio Senzatela this season, tops in the majors.

Trent Grisham has a .369 on-base percentage as the Brewers’ leadoff hitter, third-highest ever for a rookie with at least 100 plate appearances in that spot.

Statistics courtesy of Sportradar