The Milwaukee Brewers won the NL Central Division title thanks to the Chicago Cubs losing to the Atlanta Braves on Tuesday.
The Brewers do not need to return the favor and roll over to the Cubs this weekend at American Family Field.
The Cubs are in a tight race with the Miami Marlins and the Cincinnati Reds for the final NL Wild-Card spot.
They are also chasing the Arizona Diamondbacks for the fifth seed.
If they get in as the sixth seed, they will get at least two more games against the Milwaukee Brewers.
The Crew have a say in that if they can sweep or at least take the weekend series.
Manager Craig Counsell should balance rest with the need to still play with an edge. Also, it would help sharpen that killer instinct by taking out the Cubs during the final regular season series.
We saw in 2008 what happens when a team lets up. It was the Chicago Cubs who rested during the final week and it allowed the Brewers to get the wild card. The Cubs ended up getting swept by the Los Angeles Dodgers.
In this case, if the Brewers take it easy on the Cubbies, you will give a team a lot of confidence heading into a best-of-three series.
Justin Steele may be running out of gas, but he is just one game away from finding the stuff that had him as a Cy Young contender. Kyle Hendricks is always tough in the postseason. Marcus Stroman is healthy.
Those three pitchers can put the shackles on the Milwaukee Brewers’ offense.
The bats not showing up is what will get the Brew Crew eliminated. We have seen this during September: the only way this team will lose is if they cannot score runs.
This is not the fear of facing a division rival in the playoffs, nor does it want to avoid having American Family Field invaded by Cubs fans. The Cubbies are beatable with their shaky bullpen and lack of power in the lineup.
It is more of an issue of not taking advantage of a chance to eliminate a rival coming back to bite the Brew Crew.
It is a different sport, but ask the Chicago Bears in 2010 when they took it lightly on the Green Bay Packers in the regular season finale. They later watched the Pack walk onto their field and leave with the NFC Championship.
The Brewers can avoid that fate by wiping out the Cubs playoff hopes this weekend.