Milwaukee’s season came to an end in heartbreaking fashion Tuesday at Washington in the NL Wild Card Game.
Leading 3-1 in the eighth inning and sending All-Star reliever Josh Hader to the mound, the Brewers watched as he loaded the bases before a single by Juan Soto got past outfielder Trent Grisham. That cleared the bases and gave the Nationals a 4-3 lead.
Closer Daniel Hudson came on and retired the Brewers to get Washington into the NL Divisional Series against the Los Angeles Dodgers.
The loss ended what had been a magical ride for Milwaukee over the last month. The Brewers closed the season by winning 19 of their final 24 games to make the postseason for the second straight year, just the second time in franchise history they’d done that. And it looked like some of that momentum had carried over to the postseason early on against Washington.
Catcher Yasmani Grandal drilled a 2-run homer in the first inning off of All-Star Max Scherzer and then first baseman Eric Thames followed with a solo shot in the second inning for a 3-0 lead.
Milwaukee got its desired pitching outcome as well, with starter Brandon Woodruff allowing just one run over four innings, before turning things over to Brent Suter and Drew Pomeranz for the next three innings. All of it led to Hader getting the ball for the final six outs but he and the club were unable to deliver.
The focus will now shift to the offseason that could see plenty of turnover, with Grandal and third baseman Mike Moustakas both having mutual options in their contracts, and free agents like Thames and Pomeranz to deal with.