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Preview, #41: 5/14 vs. Brewers

Get the torches and pitchforks ready!

Milwaukee Brewers v Arizona Diamondbacks Photo by Norm Hall/Getty Images

Today's Lineups

Lorenzo Cain - CF David Peralta - LF
Jesus Aguilar - 1B Daniel Descalso - 3B
Ryan Braun - LF Paul Goldschmidt - 1B
Travis Shaw - 3B A.J. Pollock - CF
Domingo Santana - RF Steven Souza - RF
Hernan Perez - 2B Ketel Marte - 2B
Manny Pina - C Nick Ahmed - SS
Orlando Arcia - SS John Ryan Murphy - C
Junior Guerra - RHP Patrick Corbin - LHP

It’s impossible to face the Brewers - at least, while Ryan Braun still plays for them - without thinking back to the infamous 2011 NLDS between the two sides. It went all the way to extra innings in Game 5, before Milwaukee prevailed. Braun batted .500 that series, with a 1.460 OPS, so it’s fair to say he was pivotal to the Brewers success. Except, Braun tested positive for elevated testosterone that month. He escaped punishment then on a technicality, but the reprieve was temporary. A smoking gun showed up in February 2013, in the form of documents connecting him to the infamous BioGenesis clinic, and he was suspended for much of that season. #NeverForget. Kirk Gibson certainly didn’t:

“Everybody listened to his line of shit, so you take him at face value. All things considered, we should have won [Game 5 of the 2011 NLDS]. All things considered, the last game, we tied it up and we had a chance to win it. There were other times in my career when I did overcome cheaters. We had our chance.”

I’m pretty sure the crowd at Chase Field will not have forgotten either, and will give Ryan Braun the warm welcome he so richly deserves, when he comes up to bat in the top of the first inning. He’s a (drug-tested) shadow of the 2011 NL MVP and 2012 runner-up, and has been below replacement level for the Brewers this year. He’s still earning $20 million though, and the Brewers are doing well enough, even without their long-term superstar - much the same way the D-backs are doing well enough, despite Paul Goldschmidt’s very slow start to the season. This’ll be another challenge, facing the team leading the Central, though the opposing pitchers aren’t QUITE as star-studded as in recent series!