"A month and a week ago, people were saying that about us," Roenicke said coming into the four-game set at Wrigley Field. "So I just can't think going into a series, 'Hey, good, we're going to play somebody that's not playing well.' It just doesn't always work out that way. We came back home [last week] after a good series in Florida to play the Mets, and, really, we could have lost all three games. If it wasn't for the great comeback in the middle game, we get swept.
"So, I don't look at this series like, the Cubs are struggling and we're playing good. I look at it as, if we want to beat them, we'd better keep playing good."
Though the Brewers didn't play poorly - Randy Wolf threw seven shutout innings - the Cubs prevailed on Monday behind just as strong a performance from Ryan Dempster and won, 1-0. Yovani Gallardo pitches for Milwaukee and Randy Wells for Chicago in a matchup of right-handers on Tuesday.
"It feels good to be home," Cubs second baseman Darwin Barney said Monday night. "That's just one. It feels good to get the W, but now we start thinking about [Tuesday] and trying to put some runs up."
For Chicago, the going doesn't get any easier: The Yankees and White Sox are up next, and despite a rash of injuries, manager Mike Quade spoke of fighting through the tough times.
"That road trip is way in the rear-view mirror and it better be for everybody," Quade said. "I get paid to manage this club and do the best I can for this organization every day, whoever is healthy and whoever is not. If I stay with that, then I come to the park ready to go every day. You leave the park after tough losses and it's no fun. And it's the same for [the players]. They've come in and stayed loose in the clubhouse and human nature makes things tough, but you have to find a way to fight through it. In some way, with some of the kids who are here, it's been easier."
Brewers first baseman Prince Fielder, a free agent at the end of the season and thought to be a potential Cubs target, echoed Roenicke's sentiments about not taking the Cubs lightly. He did not, though, indulge any free-agency talk.
"There's no thoughts to it right now, because I'm with the Brewers," Fielder said.
Fielder on Monday was named the National League Player of the Week for a second time in 2011. He hit an NL-best .500 (10-for-20) last week and led the Majors with six home runs, a 1.500 slugging percentage, a .643 on-base percentage and 30 total bases.
"I'm just glad the team is playing good baseball and we're winning," Fielder said. "That makes it that much better. ... Usually, when you have a lot of guys being successful [individually], it means you're winning."
Brewers: Saito pushed back
Reliever Takashi Saito was cleared by a club doctor to attempt a rehabilitation assignment at Class A Wisconsin on Tuesday or Wednesday after he was scratched on Sunday.
Saito is rehabbing a left rib-cage strain and reported feeling tightness in his upper back.
"He just didn't feel right," assistant general manager Gord Ash said. "He didn't want to push it."
Cubs: Blister puts Wood on DL
Right-hander Kerry Wood on Monday was placed on the 15-day disabled list, retroactive to June 9, because of a blister on his right index finger.
"I was really hoping the last few days that he could manage that thing and it didn't get any better," Quade said.
Right-hander Jeff Samardzija has assumed setup duties as Wood works back from the blister, which has nagged him for about a month. The Cubs still have seven pitchers in the bullpen after adding right-hander Casey Coleman on Saturday.
Chicago is 17-14 when its starters go at least six innings.
Milwaukee is 13-20 on the road overall, but 8-6 in its last 14. Monday's loss snapped a season-high four-game road win streak.