Tuesday, October 4, 2011
Brewers look to secure NLCS berth
The Milwaukee Brewers won the first two games at home, but the National League Divisional Series moves to Phoenix Tuesday night. This is the first time in franchise history that the Brewers have taken a 2-0 series lead. In four previous postseason series, the Brewers are just 1-4 with the chance to win a series.
The Arizona Diamondbacks send Josh Collmenter to the mound in an effort to extend the series. The righty faced the Brewers twice during the regular season without allowing a run or an extra-base hit in 14 innings.
The key for Collmenter will be shutting down Ryan Braun, who is 6-for-8 with three extra-base hits in the NLDS. During the regular season, Braun was hitless in six at-bats against Collmenter.
The Brewers counter with Shaun Marcum, who is also making his first postseason start. Marcum struggled down the stretch, with a 1-2 record and 6.66 ERA in his last four regular-season starts.
Miguel Montero is hitless so far in the NLDS, but is the only active Diamondback hitter with a home run off of Marcum. Justin Upton is 2-for-6 against the righty, but has also struck out three times.
The Brewers have struggled on the road during their previous postseason appearances. They have lost the last five games outside Milwaukee while allowing over a run a game more in playoff games away from home.
Since sweeping the Cubs in the 2007 NLDS, Arizona has dropped six straight postseason games. Returning to the desert could provide some relief, as the Diamondbacks are 9-6 in home playoff games.