1. Milwaukee Brewers
The Milwaukee Brewers and St. Louis Cardinals have been duking it out at the top of the division for the last 5 years. The Brewers won the division in 2018 and 2021, and they made the playoffs in 2019 and 2020. The Brew Crew appear to have a strong hold on the division this year, as they have a relatively comfortable five-game lead on the Cubs as of August 29th.
A good team begins with a strong rotation, as the Cardinals found out the hard way this year. The Brewers are led by Corbin Burnes and Brandon Woodruff, two ace-level pitchers. Freddy Peralta has shown the ability to lead a staff as well. Christian Yelich has found his swing again, and Willy Adames and William Contreras are swinging strong bats this year.
The highlight for Milwaukee this year was their collection of "Freshmen", as they are locally dubbed. Joey Wiemer, Sal Frelick, and Bryce Turang are all rookies. Each is performing well, especially Frelick since he was called up in late July. Not only do the Brewers have young players performing in the majors, their farm system is deep. They have 5 players in the top 55, all of whom are at AA or higher currently. Jackson Chourio (OF) is the second-overall prospect in all of baseball, and he has the potential to make the roster next year out of Spring Training.
While the Brewers won't necessarily spend to fill out a roster, they will make the shrewd trade here and there to fill any holes they have. They traded for William Contreras and Jesse Winker this offseason. Their pitching will always play in the majors. The Cardinals will have to dethrone the Milwaukee Brewers to retake the division in 2024.