MILWAUKEE -- Last season, the Cubs rallied in the second half and overtook the Milwaukee Brewers to knock them out of the postseason and win the National League Central. On Sunday, the Brewers could celebrate winning the NL Wild Card, and did so with a 3-1 win over the Cubs.
The Brewers had looked beat after a tough 7-6, 12-inning loss Sept. 18 to the Cubs at Wrigley Field. They dismissed manager Ned Yost with two weeks remaining in the season, yet were able to rebound.
"They had that tough loss over there in Chicago, and then Cincinnati beat them a couple in a row and they bounced back here at home and played well," Cubs manager Lou Piniella said of the Brewers. "I called [interim manager] Dale [Sveum] and congratulated him and wished him well."
Who knows? The Cubs and Brewers may square off in the NL Championship Series. The Cubs will open the NL Division Series on Wednesday, playing host to the Los Angeles Dodgers, while Milwaukee travels to Philadelphia to face the East champion Phillies.
CC Sabathia secured the playoff spot for Milwaukee, throwing his seventh complete game on Sunday. The Cubs used seven different pitchers as a tuneup for the NLDS.
"Our kids really pitched well today," Piniella said. "We made a game out of it. When I left the hotel this morning, I wasn't sure how this would go and it went well. Sabathia's a horse. He might be pitching on two days' rest and by the end of the year, he might be on one."
Carrie Muskat is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.