MILWAUKEE — Using regular-season victories records as the barometer, here are the best summers in Brewers history.
Long before “Beast Mode” became a thing and the 2011 Brewers won their division for the first time in a generation, they needed some pitching to go with that high-energy offense. So general manager Doug Melvin parted with five premium prospects in the span of two weeks in December 2010 to swing a pair of trades that announced to the baseball world that Milwaukee was all-in for what might be Prince Fielder’s final season in a Brewers uniform. Nine months later, the pitchers Melvin acquired, Zack Greinke and Shaun Marcum, were preparing to pitch in the postseason for the first time, Fielder was coming off one of his best all-around campaigns, Ryan Braun was poised to be the team’s first league MVP in 22 years and the Brewers were division champions for the first time since 1982.
“This was the plan,” said principal owner Mark Attanasio the day they clinched the National League Central. “This is everything we hoped for.”
The Brewers beat the D-backs in a thrilling NL Division Series, clinching their first postseason series win since ’82 on Nyjer Morgan’s extra-inning walk-off single in Game 5, before falling to St. Louis in six games in the NL Championship Series.
The ’11 season was special, but there’s an argument that the Brewers’ ’18 season might have been even more impressive. Milwaukee began…