Brewers "Centrally" Focused

Braun and the Brewers are closing in.

It's difficult for the Brewers to not pay attention to some of the playoff-race maneuverings going on around them despite their focus on winning their first NL Central title.

The Brewers' magic number for clinching their first division crown dropped to three Tuesday with their 5-1 victory over the Cubs. They are still in a battle with Arizona for home-field advantage, assuming Atlanta somehow can hang onto the wild card.

If St. Louis overtakes Atlanta for that wild-card berth, the Brewers would play the Diamondbacks in the Division Series. Should those teams finish with the same won-lost record, Arizona has the tie-breaker by winning the season series, 4-3.

"Our first objective is to get in," said third baseman Casey McGehee. "After that, we're going to try to win as many games as possible. Of course, it would be nice to open up at home. But the biggest thing is to get in and have a chance to play in the postseason.

"Assuming we're able to clinch, we're not going to just roll over. We're still going to try to win as many games as we can. You keep trying to play good baseball so we don't have to try to flip the switch going into the postseason."

Manager Ron Roenicke knows his club hasn't won anything yet and remains focused on game-to-game matters, but he admits to finding time to check out the other contending clubs.

"I look at it," he said. "Anytime you turn on a TV, you hear it. It's not like I'm so zoned into what we're doing that I shut out everybody else. I know what's going on.

"But my focus can't be there. I just can't dwell on, during a ballgame, 'What's St. Louis doing?' We've got to try to win that game. When I talk about worrying about us, that's what I mean. We've got this game to play and I need to concentrate on this. Once the game is over, I look and see what's going on."

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