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NL Central Review and Preview: The Milwaukee Brewers

Christian Yelich swings during a home game for the Milwaukee Brewers.

Despite winning the NL Central, the Brewers are in trouble going forward with a weaker rotation than they are used to employing.

In the unfolding drama of the 2023 Milwaukee Brewers (92-70) season, consistency led to a divisional crown. A strong regular season fueled fan hopes but ended in postseason disappointment yet again.

Despite a promising campaign, the Brewers stumbled when it mattered most. To compound the narrative, the team faced the departure of longtime manager Craig Counsell, adding a layer of uncertainty to the offseason shuffle.

As cheers echoed through a victorious regular season, the sting of playoff failure lingered, casting a shadow over the accomplishments. With Counsell’s departure to Chicago, the Brewers faced not only a managerial void but the challenge of regrouping for another shot at postseason glory in the seasons to come.

Month By Month

Spring Training and March

A rather uninspiring preseason performance led to a 12-15 record in Spring Training. Milwaukee followed it up with an Opening Day loss to the Chicago Cubs at Wrigley to go 0-1 in the month of March.

April: Early Triumphs (18-9)

April marked the commencement of the Milwaukee Brewers’ 2023 season with early triumphs, boasting an impressive 18-9 record. The team kicked off on a high note, showcasing a promising blend of skill and determination that set the stage for what appeared to be a formidable campaign.

May: Midseason Challenges (11-16)

Transitioning into May, the Brewers encountered midseason challenges, enduring an 11-16 record. Despite the early triumphs, this period marked a downturn. Although facing obstacles, the team demonstrated resilience and determination as they navigated the inevitable ebb and flow of a demanding baseball season in the NL Central.

June: Navigating Adversity (14-13)

June saw the Brewers navigating adversity, concluding the month with a 14-13 record. The team faced challenges head on, demonstrating the ability to stay competitive despite hurdles. The month became a pivotal chapter, with a commendable rebound after the struggles of May to keep pace with the surging Cincinnati Reds.

Bringing it on Home

July: Regaining Momentum (14-11)

As July unfolded, the Brewers regained momentum, finishing with a 14-11 record. Transitioning from adversity, they showcased a commendable rebound. Fans witnessed the team’s ability to recalibrate, with a positive shift in performance that was evident throughout the month, dominating Cincinnati to establish divisional prominence.

August: August Brilliance (17-9)

Moreover, August brought brilliance for the Brewers, concluding with an impressive 17-9 record. A resurgent OF Christian Yelich and the team hit their stride, and furthermore, a growing confidence was evident. Fans basked in the consistent success, sensing a team poised for postseason contention as the regular season reached its peak.

September: Strong Finish (17-11)

September marked a strong finish for the Brewers, concluding with a 17-11 record. The regular season drew to a close, and consequently, the team solidified its standing, setting the stage for postseason aspirations. The strong finish in September carried the momentum into what lay ahead for the Brewers in the seasons to come.


Milwaukee dominated divisional play to claim the NL Central crown. Despite struggles outside the division, a reign of terror on Cincinnati and Chicago led to yet another postseason appearance for Counsell and company.

Stellar pitching performances and fundamental defense kept the Brewers consistent, paving the way to a champagne celebration in September.

The Brewers play sound regular season baseball as well as anybody, with the ability to win series based on team cohesion and elite strategy. However, the postseason woes define the Counsell era in Wisconsin.

For as much pitching talent as Milwaukee has developed under its elite coaching staff, the Brewers simply cannot survive October with a lackluster offense. Every season we are reminded of this, as teams from outside the weak NL Central feast on this small-market club.

Free agent power hitters are rarely going to sign with Milwaukee, making it a tough place to reach postseason glory, though they did add 1B Rhys Hoskins. Give the Brewers credit for their ability to do less with more, but don’t expect them to reach the pinnacle anytime soon.

Future Forecast

This franchise deserves its respect for overall consistency, but rarely ever grabs your attention as a true contender.

2023 proved to be no different, as the Arizona Diamondbacks went into Milwaukee and swept the Brew Crew in the Wild Card round.

With the departure of Counsell, I expect this ball club to take a major step backwards. The veteran manager found success in a city many have failed to win in, yet even he could not get over the regional limitations when it mattered most.

Rumors have swirled over the past year and a half of potential relocation, although I am a firm believer in Wisconsin keeping the Brewers. However, the noise cannot be ignored, as it echoes the challenges previously discussed in leading this franchise to glory.

I see Milwaukee starting slow in 2024 and realizing the need for a total rebuild. Expect the Brewers to be sellers at the deadline and fall from a .500 pace to the basement of the NL Central. It’s only going to get worse from here, as the Brewers will look to complete a Houston-like rebuild back to the top after 2024.

Prediction: Milwaukee Brewers (72-90) miss playoffs

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