In the midst of a Wild Card run, the struggling Milwaukee Brewers have fired manager Ned Yost.
The Brewers have lost 11 of their last 14 games and were recently swept by the Philadelphia Phillies, another team fighting for the Wild Card. With Yost out as skipper, the Brewers will hope to follow in the footsteps of the New York Mets, who went on a tear after firing Willie Randolph earlier this year.
It's a bit absurd that a team who is competing for a playoff berth would fire a manager that has changed the fortune of the franchise. In Yost's first year with Milwaukee in 2003, the team won 68 games, followed by 67 in 2004. He's pulled them out of the cellar in the NL Central in the past two years, and with a current record of 83-67, the Brewers are tied with Philly for the Wild Card.
Stepping in for Yost is third base coach Dave Sveum, a former player with no managerial experience. One can question this decision as, regardless of recent woes, Yost has done a good job of making the Brewers one of the best teams in the National League.
His name might be thrown around next year for jobs with the Mariners or Blue Jays.
As for now, the Brewers need to carry on, and hope that they can forget about their recent skid. C.C. Sabathia has had an MVP-like year, and he may be the spark that fuels the Brewers past the Phillies and the surging Astros to grab the fourth and final spot in the playoffs.
Milwaukee will play the red-hot Cubs six more times this year, while Philadelphia won't face another playoff team. The odds are now against the Brewers. They have very little playoff experience, while the Phillies have been there before. Charlie Manuel is one of the league's top managers, while Dave Sveum will make his debut this week.
A season full of hope for the Brewers turned into a month of horror in September, and it will take superb play from here on out for them to edge out the Phillies. The state of Wisconsin has the 2-0 start of the Packers to fall back on, and with Yost gone, it may be yet another year that the Brewers miss the playoffs. They haven't made it since 1982.