Originally written on Fox Sports Wisconsin  |  Last updated 10/22/14
Their playoff chances only a faint mathematical possibility, the Milwaukee Brewers hope to begin an improbable run for the second NL wild-card spot Saturday night when they continue their series versus the Houston Astros.Milwaukee (80-77) is five games behind St. Louis with five games remaining, meaning it would need to run the table while the Cardinals suffer an unlikely skid to cap the regular season. The Brewers suffered a crushing 7-6 defeat Friday that all but ended their hopes of returning to the postseason for a second straight year."We didn't play well today," manager Ron Roenicke said. "We didn't pitch well. We gave them a couple of runs in the fourth inning with the defense. We did a nice job coming back, making it interesting with the offense. It just wasn't a well-played game."While it was only the 11th loss in 37 games for Milwaukee, it could not have come at a more inopportune time as St. Louis appears to have found its footing this past week to secure the last playoff spot. Marco Estrada (4-7, 3.87 ERA) now becomes the last hope for the Brewers to extend their playoff chances for at least one more day.But the right-hander needs a strong bounce-back effort to win for the third time in four starts. After stringing together 13 2-3 scoreless innings in winning back-to-back outings, Estrada was roughed up for seven runs and eight hits Monday in four innings - partially due to outfielder Carlos Gomez losing a ball in the sun in a six-run fourth - of a 12-2 defeat at Washington."It felt like it was a blink of an eye," Estrada said. "I looked up, the score was 2-1, and I was like, All right, let's get this guy out. Pop fly.' Next thing you know, it's 7-1. I couldn't believe it."Estrada has no record in two starts and a relief outing versus Houston this year, giving up seven runs in 17 innings. Bo Porter got his first win as manager of the Astros (52-105), who avoided matching last year's franchise record for losses in a season for the second straight game. Houston has played .500 ball over its last 20 games but has not won three in a row since a four-game run May 21-25.Dallas Keuchel (3-7, 4.66) will try to become the first Astros pitcher to win three consecutive starts since Bud Norris reeled off four straight May 5-21. The rookie left-hander, who will be making his first road start since Aug. 23, limited Pittsburgh to a solo homer and three other hits in seven innings of a 4-1 victory last Saturday and has allowed two runs in 16 1-3 innings covering his last three starts."He kept us in the game," Astros interim manager Tony DeFrancesco said following that outing. "He made some big pitches when he had to. I thought he was in control the whole game."He turned the order over three times, and that's something we are expecting out of him. Hopefully he can be a big part of the rotation next year."Keuchel is 0-1 in two starts versus Milwaukee this year and was pounded in the lone outing at Miller Park on July 31, yielding seven runs and seven hits with a season-high six walks in four-plus innings of a 10-1 defeat.Brewers third baseman Aramis Ramirez is 4 for 6 with a home run versus Keuchel, while Ryan Braun - the NL leader with 41 homers - is 2 for 4.

Ex-Bronco John Boyett punched cabbie, told cops to call Elway

Former NFL QB still feels effects of concussions every day

Robert Klemko given four-week suspension from The MMQB

Michael Vick: Percy Harvin won't be a monster here

Robert Griffin III 'guaranteed' to be back in Week 11

Urlacher: Cutler paid like elite QB, hasn’t produced like one


Hoyer doesn’t think about getting benched for Manziel

Cardinals kicker blew $1,500 signing bonus on headphones

Ainge: Draft lottery reform would be 'better for the game'

Royals take Game 2 to even series with Giants

Report: Roger Goodell will have to testify in Ray Rice case

Blake Griffin accused of slapping man in Las Vegas club

PK Subban as Michaell Jackson at Canadiens' Halloween party

On Kevin Love, Kyrie Irving and embracing newfound roles

One Direction promotes tour by acting like bandwagon NFL fans

Jimmy Howard unveils pink mask for 'Hockey Fights Cancer'

Louisville Athletic Dept. asking for donations at gas pump

Falcons make huge mistake with London infographic

DeMarco Murry surprises Cowboys linemen with iMacs

Jimbo Fisher's son reps for Winston on 'Superhero Day'

WATCH: Steve Ballmer freaks out while shown on Jumbotron

AUDIO: Rex Ryan pranks Sammy Watkins on conference call

Top storyline for each Week 8 NFL game

WATCH: Giants pitcher yells at Salvador Perez after HR

MLB News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

Are sports leagues finally getting serious about domestic violence?

Brian Urlacher rips Jay Cutler

On Kevin Love, Kyrie Irving and embracing newfound roles

Top NFL storylines: Week 8

Kiffin's mom worried for son's safety

Report: Goodell will have to testify

Penguins do 'O Canada' following tragedy

UEFA Champions League midway report: Groups A – D

Porn star: No one parties like Janikowski

Report: Expect Florida to make a run at Bob Stoops

The San Francisco Giants are zombies

10 bold predictions for NFL Week 8

Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.