Looking back on Crew's clutch fall taters
Week's walk-offs from Braun, Prince are among franchise best
MILWAUKEE -- Add Prince Fielder's two-run home run Tuesday and Ryan Braun's grand slam Thursday to the top of the list of the most pressure-packed homers in Brewers history.That's according to Mario Ziino, a former front-office fixture and an unofficial club historian. Ziino has seen his share of big Brewers home runs, but listed six "playoff pressure-packed blasts" in the 40-year history of the franchise: Ziino e-mailed his list on Friday: Sept. 25, 2008: Braun hit a two-out game-winning walk-off grand slam in the 10th inning to lift the Brewers to a 5-1 victory over the Pirates on Fan Appreciation Night at Miller Park. The win kept Milwaukee tied with the Mets for the National League Wild Card race with three games remaining in the regular season. Sept. 23, 2008: Fielder hit a two-out, two-run walk-off home run in the ninth inning to cap Milwaukee's 7-5, come-from-behind victory over the Pirates at Miller Park that kept the Brewers' playoff hopes alive. Oct. 3, 1982: Robin Yount hit two home runs off Jim Palmer, and the Brewers went on to a 10-2 victory over the Orioles in Baltimore in the season finale to claim the American League East title. Sept. 29, 1982: The only homer of the year hit by Ned Yost proved to be a game-winner as his ninth-inning pinch-hit three-run blast lifted the Brewers to a 6-3 win over the Red Sox in Boston. With the victory, the Brewers had a four-game lead with five to play. Sept. 28, 1981: Mark Brouhard hit a solo home run in the seventh inning off the Angels' Frank Tanana, and Pete Vuckovich earned a three-hit, 1-0 decision, putting the Brewers in first place in the AL East. Milwaukee led the Tigers by a half-game with five to play. Ziino was watching when Braun took Pirates reliever Jesse Chavez deep in the bottom of the 10th inning Thursday to give Milwaukee and New York identical 88-71 records entering the final weekend of the regular season. "Those are the types of moments that can live on forever if the Brewers make the playoffs," Ziino said. "When something like that happens, you sit back and absorb it as if the player is moving in slow motion. I watched them circle the bases, and everything they did, from pumping their fists, to the expressions on their faces, to the jubilation at home plate get locked into your memory. "Those two walk-off homers were as dramatic as any I've seen hit by a Brewers player. To me, it's as if the Brewers are now destined to make the playoffs. Let's hope the rest of the weekend is just as exciting."
Adam McCalvy is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.