Obviously – in the month of April – two teams must bring something big to the table for a series to quantify as ‘big’. However, I think this three-game tilt that gets underway Friday evening at Dodger Stadium has all the makings. Surely, the eyes of the baseball world will fixate on what happens when the Milwaukee Brewers head to Los Angeles.
Equally important, both teams are coming off respective road sweeps. The Brewers were swept in Anaheim in three games, while the Dodgers lost all four games in St. Louis to lose their grip on first place in the division.
In the recent past, you can’t think of these two teams without thinking about the 2018 NLCS that took years off of all our lives. You can be sure that the Brewers haven’t forgotten that feeling, and the Dodgers want to have a good showing this weekend. This is a must-see series if you’re a baseball fan.
Friday – Corbin Burnes vs. Julio Urias
Saturday – Zach Davies vs. Undecided
Sunday – Jhoulys Chacin vs. Undecided
It’s interesting in that the Dodgers only have one pitcher announced at the time being. That pitcher will be Julio Urias on Friday evening, making his third start of the young season. Therefore, expect some kind of announcement late in the day Friday or following the game to get a better idea of who the Dodgers will throw in games two and three in the series. Currently, Clayton Kershaw is slated to throw on Monday against Cincinnati.
The Dodgers get the luxury of facing three right-handed pitchers in their home park. This combination has yielded good things for the Dodgers thus far in the 2019 season. After hitting a bit of a lull in St. Louis, the Dodgers hope the home cooking can get the bats back to the scorching pace they opened the season with.
2018 NLCS Rematch
So many memories make a series like the 2018 NLCS memorable for you and I. Whether it was the Turner home run in Milwaukee, Cody Bellinger’s sliding catch or walk-off hit, or Chris Taylor’s miracle game seven play in left field; that series was truly high-octane.
Without question, that was the equivalent to an 18-round prize fight. Many of the performers who were involved in that beautiful display dot the roster of each club. Moreover, the expectations of both teams remains extremely high. The case could be made that this is not just the 2018 rematch of the NLCS, it could be the 2019 NLCS preview.
St. Louis was a huge test for the Dodgers, and while this is at home series; it will be an equal or greater test for a team in a slide. One can bet that the Brewers have had this one marked in the back of their minds since the schedule came out.
Players To Watch
Christian Yelich opened the 2019 season as a heavy favorite to win the NL MVP award, and he hasn’t let anyone down. In 13 games, he’s hitting .367 with a 1.222 OPS to go along with 5 home runs and 15 RBI. The reigning MVP has also walked 10 times compared to just two strikeouts. When you think of the Milwaukee Brewers – the image of Yelich’s smooth swing passes through your mind.
Of course, the Dodgers have an early season MVP candidate in their own right. Cody Bellinger has come out of the gates saying ‘look at me’ with seven home runs and 19 RBI. While it seems like it’s been a while since Bellinger hit a home run, that’s because he was doing it every day. Bellinger is hitting over .400 with a 1.391 OPS, six strikeouts and six walks. He leads the NL in hits and runs scored.
Because of their hot starts – those two are the headliners. However, both of these team feature many supporting cast stars and notable players.
For instance, former Dodger Yasmani Grandal makes his return to Chavez Ravine in this series. Lorenzo Cain, Travis Shaw, and Mike Moustakas are all still a part of the heart of the Milwaukee lineup. And still the Brewers can come out of the bullpen late with the scary southpaw, Josh Hader.
This should be a really great series that gives us a lot to talk and write about.
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