Here’s our report on 2021 Brewers Win Total Bet: How Many Games Milwaukee Will Win, complete with a 2021 Brewers Wins Over/Under. The Game Day takes a dive into offseason acquisitions and losses to determine potentially profitable win total betting odds.
- Brewers Win Total Over/Under odds and lines courtesy of PointsBet current as of 3/18/2021 at 7:00 p.m. ET.
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2021 Brewers Win Total Bet: How Many Games Will Milwaukee Win?
2021 Brewers Wins Over/Under
- Over 83.5 wins (-105)
- Under 83.5 wins (-115)
One season after finishing just two games behind the NL Central champion St. Louis Cardinals with an 89-73 record, the Brewers slumped to a 29-31 mark and fourth-place finish during the abbreviated 2020 campaign. While that was actually still good enough for a postseason berth in last year’s expanded playoff field, Milwaukee was quickly disposed of by the eventual World Series champion Dodgers via a two-game sweep in the first round.
As big a factor as any in the lackluster record was a forgettable year for 2018 NL MVP Christian Yelich, who slumped to a .205 average and career-high 30.8 percent strikeout rate across 247 plate appearances. Then, Lorenzo Cain’s decision to sit out the rest of the season after only suiting up for five games certainly didn’t help matters.
The pitching staff did offer some reason for optimism, with top starters Brandon Woodruff (3-5, 3.75 ERA) and Corbin Burnes (4-1, 2.11 ERA) coming through with solid-to-above-average years and closer Josh Hader converting 13 of 15 save chances while churning out a 39.7 percent strikeout rate.
The 2021 fate of the Brewers, therefore, seems to largely rest on whether those key pieces can either revert to prior form (Yelich, Cain) and maintain or improve on their 2020 efforts (Woodruff, Burnes and Hader). The remaining complementary bats and arms will naturally also be important, but it will be difficult to envision Milwaukee getting far with another sub-par year from Yelich and a lack of meaningful contributions from Cain, one of baseball’s most consistent and balanced sources of offense when healthy.
While Cain simply needs to pick up where he left off during his short 2020 stint (.333 average over 21 plate appearances), Yelich will have to solve a perplexing problem with making consistent contact that plagued him in 2020. After not posting a strikeout rate greater than 20.9 percent in any of his previous six seasons, Yelich whiffed at a career-high 30.8 percent last season. It’s important to keep in mind Yelich suffered a fractured kneecap in September 2019, and perhaps the affected leg wasn’t yet back to 100 percent, which certainly would have affected the slugger’s mechanics in the batter’s box.
In terms of offseason moves, Milwaukee seemed to strive for a quality-over-quantity approach. The two biggest signings were Jackie Bradley Jr. and Kolten Wong, each a Gold Glove-caliber defender in the outfield and second base, respectively, that can also contribute at the plate.
Bradley bounced back from three straight sub-par offensive seasons during the abbreviated 2020 campaign in Boston, slashing .283/.364/.450 with 18 extra-base hits (11 doubles, seven home runs) across 217 plate appearances. For his part, Wong finished his Cardinals career with a .279 average and .358 on-base percentage over his last two seasons. Each player does have a history of down years with the bat, however, so it remains to be seen how they’ll acclimate to their new digs. That may be especially critical in Bradley’s case, considering he’s spent his entire career in the American League to date.
There are also two other key incumbents that have the potential to take the Brewers lineup to another level if they can revert to past form in their own right – Keston Hiura and Omar Narvaez.
Hiura was outstanding as a rookie in 2019, slashing .303/.368/.570 with 44 extra-base hits (23 doubles, two triples, 19 home runs) across 84 games. However, the 24-year-old limped to a .212/.297/.410 slash in 2020 over 59 games, despite belting an impressive 13 home runs. Hiura saw a bump from the already bloated 30.7 percent strikeout rate he’d generated as a rookie, as he went down on strikes at a 34.6 percent clip in 2020. A considerable dip in BABIP also undeniably played a role, with Hiura seeing that figure plummet from .402 to .273.
For his part, Narvaez, who’d never produced anything lower than a .267 average and .350 on-base percentage in four previous MLB seasons, posted an anemic .176/.294/.269 line over 126 plate appearances. The 29-year-old catcher had just slugged a career-high 22 home runs in Seattle during the 2019 campaign, so there’s reason to believe a resurgence should be in order. As with Hiura, consistent contact seemed to be the biggest problem for Narvaez last season, as he saw an explosion in strikeout rate from 19.1 percent to 31.0 percent.
Finally, the pitching staff behind Burnes and Woodruff does have some question marks, but potential as well. Projected No. 3 starter Josh Lindblom has been struggling this spring after posting a 5.16 ERA in 2020. Veteran southpaw Brett Anderson does offer a steady hand as the No. 4 option, while Freddy Peralta has made a strong case for the No. 5 role this spring by posting a whopping 10 strikeouts over just 3.2 innings through his first two appearances. There’s also some interesting depth in Adrian Houser, Eric Lauer and Jordan Zimmermann, although each has blemishes and not all three figure to stick on the Opening Day roster.
In addition to Hader, the bullpen also offers very viable options that include Devin Williams, Brent Suter, Brad Boxberger and offseason signee Blaine Hardy. Milwaukee relievers were already solid last season despite the team’s middling record, posting a combined 15-8 record, 4.17 ERA and 3.72 xFIP over 228.2 innings.
2021 Brewers Win Total Wager: Over 83.5 wins (-105)
The Brewers managed 89 wins in their last full season in 2019, and that was with Yelich missing the last three weeks after suffering his injury. Milwaukee has a formidable lineup on paper if one puts some faith in several hitters ascending back to the mean in terms of their career numbers after difficult 2020 campaigns. The additions of Wong and Bradley should also have a solid run-prevention impact, and while the back end of the rotation has some questions, there seems to be enough depth there for the numbers to mostly work out in Milwaukee’s favor.
The NL Central will be tough with the Cardinals and Cubs sporting plenty of big names, but Milwaukee can hang right with them if their talented bats rise to the occasion. The 83.5 wins seem like a very realistic benchmark for a team that also has an elite closer to help ensure some close victories, putting me in the direction of the Over.
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