Thanks to an ill-timed slump by the Brewers and taking appropriate advantage of a soft stretch in the schedule, the Cardinals have passed the Brewers for second place in the NL Central.
Even as we’ve followed the Brewers closely – and will continue to do so as long as they are in striking distance – it has always felt like the Cardinals were more likely to be in this position than the Brewers. They have the better overall on-paper team, a little more veteran presence (which does seem to factor down the stretch), and the constant presence of Voodoo Magic. And, to the Cardinals’ credit, like the Cubs, they’ve dealt with a bunch of injuries but have managed to hang around despite that.
Last night, the Cardinals pulled off yet another win against the Padres, leaving them with a 72-67 mark, a half game better than the Brewers, who lost yet again to the Reds. The Cardinals stand 4.0 games behind the Cubs, and the Brewers are 4.5 games back.
Meanwhile, the Diamondbacks won an incredible 13th in a row, the Dodgers lost AGAIN, and yet the Diamondbacks are still 10.5 games back. The Rockies lost, which brings the Cardinals to within 2.0 games of that second Wild Card spot. The Brewers are 2.5 games back.
The Cardinals play again tonight in San Diego, while the Brewers are off until this weekend’s series in Chicago.
Magic number check: