Commentary

Milwaukee's challenge in the NLCS

In a close series, the Brewers may not score enough runs to beat the Cardinals

Originally Published: October 9, 2011
By Jason Grey | ESPN Insider
Matt Holliday Dilip Vishwanat/Getty ImagesA healthy Matt Holliday could be the difference for St. Louis in this year's NLCS.

The Milwaukee Brewers got the best of the St. Louis Cardinals in the season standings, but this is a red-hot team they're facing now given how the Cards were able to storm to a wild-card berth and take out the heavily favored Philadelphia Phillies in the first round.

The Cardinals downed the Phillies' vaunted pitching staff in the NLDS by getting contributions from their entire lineup, reflecting a team that led the National League in runs scored.

They'll need all that run-scoring ability again to beat a team with the best home record in baseball during the regular season and the home-field advantage in this series.

Lineup depth

Lineup depth may be one of the keys to this series. At times recently it seems that the Brewers' offense is whatever Prince Fielder and Ryan Braun gives them. While that's a little bit of an oversimplification, the key to the Brewers' chances may not be what their big two provide, but in continuing to get production from Corey Hart, Jerry Hairston Jr. and more Tony Plush-ian heroics from Nyjer Morgan, among others.