Over the past few seasons Milwaukee Brewers manager Craig Counsell has made a name for himself during the month of September. Given all of his previous success, fans have now trademarked September first as the start of “Craigtember”. With that being said, let quick review Counsell’s history in September and what to expect this year.
Counsell’s History in September
Between 2018 and 2020, all play-off seasons, Counsell has a managerial record of 52-29 in September. In 2018, the Brewers chased down the division rival Chicago Cubs thanks to a 19-7 September record. They forced a game 163 to determine the National League Central Champion and ended up making a deep play-off run.
In 2019, the Brewers played essentially .500 baseball all year until September when they posted a 20-7 record. They were able to overcome injuries to Christian Yelich and Brandon Woodruff while still securing a wild card spot. They would lose to the eventual world series champions that year in the Washington Nationals.
What To Expect In 2021
Due to recent rule changes, rosters now only expand to 28 players. This will prevent Counsell from constructing super bullpens like he had in years previous. Early indications are that Daniel Vogelbach and Justin Topa will be the two additional players to begin the month.
Big Dan Vogelbach and Justin Topa are in San Francisco. Rosters expand tomorrow from 26 to 28 for September.
— Adam McCalvy (@AdamMcCalvy) August 31, 2021
Thankfully, this year the Brewers find themselves atop the standings and not having to chase teams down for a play-off spot. The team has been dominate all season in large part due to a historically good pitching staff and key contributions from new players. They currently are on pace to set a franchise record in wins.
As for Counsell, he is yet to win a manager of the year award. He is very deserving to win this award in 2021 and a strong finish to the season may help him secure this. Of course, winning a world series would be nice as well but first Counsell and the Brewers have to take care of business in September.