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On The Horizon: Cubs vs. Brewers series preview

This series is more evenly matched than you might think.

Photo by Joe Robbins/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

The last time these teams met, in Milwaukee in early July, the Cubs won two of three — and since then they’ve been almost even, the Brewers 16-17 and the Cubs 16-19.

For more on the Brewers, here’s Harrison Freuck, manager of our SB Nation Brewers site Brew Crew Ball.

The mood in Milwaukee about the Brewers is... mixed. And that’s being a bit generous. Plenty of fans were angry at the trade deadline moves Milwaukee made, specifically the trade of Josh Hader to the Padres and the lack of an addition on offense.

Since that time, the Brewers have scuffled to a 6-9 record heading into this series, including 2-7 against the Pirates/Reds/Cardinals. The Brewers bats have looked average since the deadline, and the bullpen suddenly looks very human without Hader. This is a different team than Cubs fans are probably used to seeing, but I think it’s safe to say that the Brewers are still the better team, especially on the pitching side of things.

With Corbin Burnes going Thursday against the Dodgers, the Cubs won’t have to face the reigning Cy Young winner, but the Brewers are getting some guys back from injury, including Freddy Peralta, who has made three starts since returning. With the Brewers rotation as it is now, I’d expect it to be Aaron Ashby, Peralta and Brandon Woodruff getting the ball this weekend. Depending how the last two games of the series against the Dodgers go, the Brewers’ team morale could be flying high, as they walked off against L.A. on Tuesday night. The next two weeks could be make-or-break for Milwaukee, with seven games against the Dodgers and six games against the Cubs while the division-leading Cardinals get the Rockies and Diamondbacks.

Fun fact

In the Cubs’ seven wins against Milwaukee this year, they have outscored the Brewers 38-18, but in the six losses they have been outscored 40-15.

Probable pitching matchups

Friday: Keegan Thompson, RHP (9-5, 3.67 ERA, 1.272 WHIP, 4.19 FIP) vs. Aaron Ashby, LHP (2-10, 4.24 ERA, 1.423 WHIP, 4.14 FIP)

Saturday: Marcus Stroman, RHP (3-5, 3.96 ERA, 1.179 WHIP, 3.86 FIP) vs. Freddy Peralta, RHP (4-3, 4.21 ERA, 1.169 WHIP, 2.82 FIP)

Sunday: Justin Steele, LHP (4-7, 3.43 ERA, 1.393 WHIP, 3.23 FIP) vs. Brandon Woodruff, RHP (9-3, 3.53 ERA, 1.155 WHIP, 3.16 FIP)

Times & TV channels

Friday: 1:20 p.m. CT, Marquee Sports Network, (also on MLB Network outside the Cubs and Brewers market territories)

Saturday: 1:20 p.m. CT, Marquee Sports Network, FS1 (no blackouts)

Sunday: 1:20 p.m. CT, Marquee Sports Network


The Cubs have played the Brewers well this year, going 7-6 in the 13 games so far. Since July 30 the Brewers are 6-10 and the Cubs are 9-8. The Brewers have lost five of their last six road games and the Cubs have won seven of their last nine home games. These pitching matchups look ... relatively even, not one-sided as (for example) last year vs. Milwaukee.

The Cubs will take two of three.

Up next

The Cubs host the Cardinals in a five-game series beginning Monday evening. That includes a doubleheader Tuesday, the final Cubs lockout makeup game.


How many games will the Cubs win against the Brewers?

This poll is closed

  • 12%
    (18 votes)
  • 47%
    (66 votes)
  • 30%
    (43 votes)
  • 9%
    (13 votes)
140 votes total Vote Now