Daily Archives: August 12th, 2012

The Brewers last 50 games: What do they play for as the season concludes?

Miller Park is the home stadium of Major Leagu...

Milwaukee’s Miller Park (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Sports Stats ‘on Tapp’ is a sports statistics blog focused on stats that go beyond the numbers.

With a 51-61 record that puts them 16 games behind the division leaders, and 11 1/2 games out of the second Wild Card spot, there’s reason to think that the Brewers don’t have much to play for they head towards the conclusion of the 2012 season.

With 50 games left, the question is: How will the Brewers finish this disappointing season?

First, are the playoffs out of the question? Playoffs? PLAYOFFS?

The answer: Yes, the playoffs are out of the question.

Here’s a quick stat to consider. Since 1996, the team that won the Wild Card spot in the National League won an average of 91.5 games. The most wins for a Wild Card since ’96 was the Mets 97 wins in 1999, while the fewest wins to garner a N.L. Wild Card spot was 88 in 2006 when the Dodgers won the league’s fourth playoff spot. For the Brewers to win the first Wild Card berth, they would have to go 40-10 to reach that 91-win mark.

Taking it a step further, if the N.L. had awarded a second Wild Card from 1996 to 2011, the second Wild Card spot would have gone to a team that won an average of 89.1 games. Again, for the Brewers to win that second Wild Card sport would mean they would have to go 38-12 to reach the 89-win mark.

Playoffs? No way, barring a miraculous finish by the Brewers. Possible? Anything’s possible. Likely? Probably not, especially considering the disarray of the team’s bullpen.

What is probably more realistic is for the Brewers to shoot for a season that ends with them above the .500 mark. To go 82-80 to reach that plus-.500 mark, the team would have to go 31-19 in their last 50 games. Is that a possibility?

Taking a look at how well the Brewers have done in the last 50 games of the season in their history, the team has posted seven seasons in their history where they won 31 or more of their last 50 games. Topping that list was last year’s team that went 34-16 in their last 50 games.

Following are the seasons in the past 43 years where the Brewers have won 30 or more of their last 50 games.

Season, record in last 50 games

2011: 34-16

1991: 33-17

1992: 32-18

1987: 32-18

1988: 31-19

1979: 31-19

1978: 31-19

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