Brewers season ends with Game 6 loss

Someday, Milwaukee may raise a mug to the 2011 Brewers. Fans will toast co-MVP candidates Ryan Braun and Prince Fielder and the nuttiness of Nyjer Morgan and his alter egos. They’ll toast Zack Greinke and Yovani Gallardo starting games, the mustachioed John Axford closing them out, baseball’s best home team and Beast Mode.

Someday. But not Sunday.

Shaun Marcum’s disastrous first inning transformed Game 6 of the National League Championship Series into a Cardinals hitting clinic, and Miller Park into a somber farewell for free-agent-to-be Fielder. The Cardinals scored nine runs over the first three innings alone, an early barrage that sent the Brewers to a season-ending 12-6 loss and sent St. Louis on to the World Series.

The Cardinals took the NLCS, 4-2, and will host the Rangers in Game 1 of the World Series on Wednesday at Busch Stadium. It’s the Cardinals’ 18th NL pennant, and their sixth since the LCS format was introduced in 1970, most of any NL franchise. Albert Pujols & Co. are playing for the franchise’s 11th World Series championship.

The Brewers are going home.

“I would have liked to get two from them this time and get some revenge,” Hall of Famer Robin Yount said outside the Brewers’ clubhouse.

His club was in the opposite position when these teams last met in the postseason. Milwaukee took a 3-2 lead to St. Louis during the 1982 World Series and wound up losing a pair of games — and the championship — at Busch Stadium.

Now the Cardinals have bounced the Brewers again.

“These Cardinals are getting under my skin,” Yount said.

The Brewers won’t have to wait long to see the Cardinals again. After St. Louis makes a one-game stop in Miami to open the Marlins’ new stadium, the Cardinals and Brewers will meet for Opening Day at Miller Park on April 6, 2012.

“We were real, real close this year,” said Morgan. “We just didn’t get the cigar.”


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