Brewers' Path to the Postseason: Sept. 17, 2012

Brewers' Path to the Postseason: Sept. 17, 2012

Brewers' Path to the Postseason: Sept. 17, 2012
MILWAUKEE -- The Brewers' path to the postseason now goes to the road, and it isn't easy.

A win over the Mets on Sunday kept the Brewers on pace with the leaders in the race for the National League's second Wild Card. Since the co-leaders -- the Dodgers and the Cardinals -- were playing each other on Sunday afternoon, the Brewers entered the day destined either to remain 2 1/2 games back, or drop further off the pace.

They did the former, thanks to two Ryan Braun home runs and another stellar start for rookie right-hander Wily Peralta, the sort of outing the Brewers have been getting in bunches from unlikely arms while winning 20 of their last 26 games. The Brewers also passed the Pirates, who lost in Chicago and ended the night three games off the pace for that second Wild Card berth.

Up next: Ten games in as many days at Pittsburgh, Washington and Cincinnati.

"Technically, we're still in a position to go [undefeated] the rest of the season and still not get in," Braun said. "We don't control our own destiny. So we just continue to compete, and hopefully we play the way we've been playing. Our goal is to get in."

Monday's key games to watch (all times ET)

Braves (Hudson, 14-6) at Marlins (LeBlanc, 2-4), 7:10 p.m. Preview>

Phillies (Lee, 5-7) at Mets (Dickey, 18-5), 7:10 p.m. Preview >

Pirates (Correia, 10-9) at Cubs (Wood, 6-11), 8:10 p.m. Preview >

Rockies (Chacin, 2-5) at Giants (Bumgarner 14-10), 10:15 p.m. Preview >

If the postseason started today ...

AMERICAN LEAGUE
Wild Card: Second Wild Card at First Wild Card
Division Series: Second-best AL record vs. Third-best AL record | Best AL record at Wild Card winner

NATIONAL LEAGUE
Wild Card: Second Wild Card at First Wild Card
Division Series: Second-best NL record vs. Third-best NL record | Best NL record at Wild Card winner

Postseason Bracket »

Postseason 101

Magic numbers
To calculate a team's magic number, take the number of games it has remaining and add one. Then subtract the difference in the number of losses between that team and its closest pursuer.

Tiebreaker scenarios
A tiebreaker game will be played to determine a division winner, even if the tied clubs are assured of participating in the postseason. If a division championship tiebreaker is necessary, the head-to-head record between the clubs will determine home-field advantage. If the head-to-head record is tied, then the division record will be the next tiebreaker.

If two clubs are tied for the two Wild Card berths, home-field advantage will be determined by the head-to-head record between the clubs. If the head-to-head record is tied, then the division record will be the next tiebreaker.

Tiebreaker rules »

2012 postseason schedule
Wild Card playoff games: Oct. 5
Division Series: Oct. 6-12
AL Championship Series: Oct. 13-21
NL Championship Series: Oct. 14-22
World Series: Oct. 24-Nov. 1

Adam McCalvy is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Brew Beat, and follow him on Twitter at @AdamMcCalvy. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.