With a win Thursday over the Cardinals, the Milwaukee Brewers' magic number to clinch a playoff spot fell to two with nine games to play. Long story short, they can clinch a playoff berth with a win over the Miami Marlins on Friday evening.
The Brewers can also clinch the division title Friday, though it requires the Cubs to also lose both Thursday and Friday. But a win would mean at the very least a wild-card spot, with a division title very likely to follow.
If Milwaukee pulls it off, the Sept. 22 date would be the earliest calendar clinching date in franchise history.
Clinching a spot doesn't guarantee that the Brewers will host a first-round playoff series, beginning Oct. 3, but it would take a catastrophic series of events for Milwaukee not to host those games, a best-of-three series termed the "wild card" round even if the Brewers win the division. Here's what to know about snagging tickets to those games.
When do the Brewers begin their playoff games?
Barring near-impossible events, the Brewers will host all three games of a best-of-three series in the "wild card" round of the postseason, running Oct. 3-5.
The Brewers would need to win two of those three games to advance to the National League Division Series, almost certainly against the Los Angeles Dodgers. The Brewers would hit the road for Games 1 and 2 of that best-of-five series, Oct. 7 and Oct. 9, then return home for two games (if both are necessary), Oct. 11-12. A fifth game would be played in Los Angeles on Oct. 14.
How do fans get tickets to those games?
Single-game tickets for wild card games at American Family Field will be available for purchase by the general public at 10 a.m. CT on Friday, Sept. 22.
Brewers.com registered users who previously purchased a ticket for any game during the 2023 season already have access to buying tickets as of 10 a.m. Thursday. Those fans should have received an email with instructions on how to access the presale.
The Brewers also offer an opportunity to buy an entire "strip" of tickets for all potential home playoff games through a deposit on a season ticket plan for 2024. This is the current best method of getting tickets to rounds of the playoffs beyond the wild-card round.
Customers will also have an opportunity to purchase parking passes online, with digital parking passes available on a first-come, first-served basis.
All tickets will be delivered exclusively through the MLB Ballpark App, and refunds are issued for purchased tickets to games that wind up not taking place (within 10 business days of the scheduled game).
For more information, including seating and pricing information, visit brewers.com/postseason or call 414-902-4000.
Why is it the 'wild card' round if the Brewers win the division?
This is the second year of a playoff format that features six teams per league, in which the top two division winners (in this case, the Braves and Dodgers are running away with those spots) get a first-round bye, leaving the third and final division winner and three wild card teams to battle it out for a spot in the division series.
Winning the division means the Brewers will be guaranteed to host (as will the top wild-card team) and face the third and final wild-card team. Much like the NFL, it's still termed the wild-card round even though a division winner is involved. The Brewers will have to win two of three, but all the games will be played in Milwaukee.
Who will the Brewers face in the first round of the playoffs?
It's a jumbled picture right now, but the teams that could wind up facing Milwaukee include the Chicago Cubs (yes, brace yourselves), Miami Marlins, Arizona Diamondbacks, Cincinnati Reds, San Francisco Giants and Philadelphia Phillies. The Giants and Phillies are looking more like longshots, but the other teams are separated by a narrow margin as of Sept. 21.
More certain is the Braves are likely to win the top seed in the NL and face the winner of the wild-card series that doesn't involve Milwaukee, with the Dodgers firmly entrenched in the No. 2 spot and almost certain to face the Brewers should they advance.
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This article originally appeared on Milwaukee Journal Sentinel: Brewers single-game playoff tickets go on sale Friday