June 13, 1997|
|Latest meeting||September 15, 2016 [Wrigley Field]|
|Regular season series||156–152, Cubs|
|Largest victory||Brewers 18–1, August 2, 2010 at Wrigley Field|
|Longest win streak||
|Current win streak||2, Brewers|
The Brewers–Cubs rivalry is a Major League Baseball (MLB) rivalry between the Milwaukee Brewers and Chicago Cubs. Both clubs are members of MLB's National League (NL) Central division. The rivalry is also sometimes known as the I-94 Rivalry, because the two teams' ballparks are located only 83.3 miles (134.1 km) from each other off Interstate 94 (I-94). Bob Uecker and Harry Caray have been sportscasters for their respective teams.
The Brewers and Cubs have been playing each other in spring training Cactus League games since the Brewers franchise began as the Seattle Pilots in 1969. However, this budding rivalry did not begin to grow until 1998, when the Brewers moved from the American League Central Division to the National League Central. Until then, the Brewers had a rivalry with Chicago's AL team, the White Sox.
The Brewers and Cubs met for the first official time on June 13, 1997 in interleague play, a 4-2 Brewers victory in Wrigley Field. They met for the first time as division rivals on June 15, 1998, a 6-5 Cubs victory also in Wrigley Field. The young series has proven very competitive with the Brewers leading 131-123 through the 2013 season.
After battling for the NL Central title in both 2007 and 2008, the teams met at Miller Park for the Brewers' home opener. During the second game of the homestand on Saturday April 11, 2009, the Brewers had the highest attendance in Major League Baseball for the rivalry game.
During games in Milwaukee, it was sometimes common for there to be many Cubs fans in attendance. This has been largely due to the ticket availability at Miller Park; Wrigley Field has routinely sold out in the past, so it has often been easier and cheaper for Cubs fans to watch games at Miller Park. During the 2006 season, the Milwaukee Brewers started the "Take Back Miller Park" campaign to regain home field advantage. Since then, the dominating presence of Cubs fans has somewhat dwindled as the Brewers have become more popular with local fans following the sale of the team from Bud Selig to Mark Attanasio. Through the 2007 and 2008 seasons, the rivalry became more intense with both teams battling for the National League Central crown, a prize the Cubs eventually claimed both seasons. During 2008, the Brewers had a sellout streak going at the start of a mid-July series at home against the Cubs.
The rivalry was less prominent in the following seasons, as both teams finished well out of playoff contention in 2010, while in 2011 the Brewers claimed the NL Central title and the Cubs struggled to a 71-91 record.
After the 2011 season ended, former Brewer player, coach and manager Dale Sveum was hired by the Cubs to be their new manager in 2012. The Brewers in 2012, won 13 of 17 games against the Cubs to take the all-time series at 118-117.
The Brewers won 13 out of the 19 meetings between the two teams in the 2013 season, extending their series lead to 131-123.
Sports rivalries of the same cities/states:
- Vascellaro, Charlie. "History of the Cactus League". cactusleague.com. Cactus League.
- Sullivan, Paul (June 14, 1997). "Brewers 4, Cubs 2 For Cubbies, Interleague Play is Ex-Cub Factor Going Haywire". Chicago Tribune. p. 3.
- Dorsey, David (June 16, 1998). "Sosa rips 3 HRs in Cubs' 6-5 win". USA Today. p. 1C.
- De Marco, Pat (2009-04-12). "Cubs and Brewers: One of Baseball's Best Rivalries". Bleacher Report. CBS Sports.
- McCalvy, Adam (February 20, 2006). "Take Back Miller Park set to launch". MLB.com.
- Glauber, Bill (2008-07-29). "Rivalry, conflict, chaos erupt, and that's in stands: Miller Park packed for Brewers-Cubs". Journal Sentinel.