By OnMilwaukee Staff Writers   Published Sep 26, 2008 at 10:06 PM
One more victory.

That's all the Brewers need to do to clinch their first postseason berth in 26 years, after picking up a game on the New York Mets in the National League Wild Card race with a 5-1 victory over the Cubs Friday night at Miller Park.

The Mets fell to Florida, 5-1, at Shea Stadium. If the Brewers win Saturday afternoon, they can clinch at least a tie for the Wild Card with the Mets; a Milwaukee victory and New York loss would give the Brewers the final National League playoff spot.

"It's a good feeling when you have destiny in your hands," Sveum said. "We don't have to chase anybody, we're not tied, we're not anything. It's in our hands now."

Confidence is high in the Brewers locker room. Milwaukee has a one-game lead with two to play and the team is playing some of its baseball of the season.

"We've got two more games," said second baseman Ray Durham, who went 2-for-3 Saturday with a double. "We'll go out there and play our butts off tomorrow and see what happens."

The Brewers continued their flair for the dramatic and again, the fireworks were provided by the most unlikely of heroes; the biggest being Rickie Weeks, whose three-run homer in the seventh broke open a 2-1 game.

Weeks hadn't seen much action since Sveum took over as manager 10 games ago, but has made the most of his opportunities. He's been hot of late, overall, going 15-for-45 with three homers and seven batted in over the last 15 games.

"Anybody can win a game for us at any time," said Weeks, who has just 19 at-bats in the last two weeks after being relegated to a bench role. "It's the first time we've been in this atmosphere, I think, a playoff situation like this."

Jeff Suppan allowed eight hits, but just one run -- on a second-inning home run by Jim Edmonds -- while striking out five in five innings of work. He worked past the fourth inning for the first time since a Sept. 9 outing against San Diego.

Entering the game, he was 0-3 with a 10.47 in his last four starts; including a five-run, five-hit, two-inning outing at Cincinnati in his last start.

"It's been a battle for me as of late," Suppan said. "My focus has been the same, but tonight I was able to execute my pitches."

Suppan, as he has all month, labored at times but unlike his previous September outings, was able to get outs when he needed to.

"He was giving up some hits, but he was getting out of jams and making pitches when he had to," Sveum said. "He did what we expected of him. He gave us five innings and 90 pitches, held them to one run."

With the offense struggling against Chicago starter Ryan Dempster, the defense stepped up to keep Suppan out of further trouble. Mike Cameron made a leaping grab of Micah Hoffpauir's first-inning fly ball to center, keeping a pair of runs from scoring.

In the fifth, Corey Hart robbed Hoffpauir on a great throw that held Mike Fontenot at third. Jason Kendall's relay caught Hoffpauir trying to advance to second for the final out of the inning, preserving a 1-1 tie.

"There's always a turning point in the game and that was it for us," Sveum said.

Hart also contributed at the plate. Entering the game with just one hit in his previous 10 at-bats, his bloop single into shallow left field put the Brewers on the board in the second inning when he scored on Jason Kendall's two-out double.

"That's Corey at his finest. It's hard for me to substitue for that guy or give him a day off," Sveum said. "He seems to do something that helps you win every day."

Seth McClung came on in the sixth and went into shut-down mode. He held the Cubs scoreless over the final four innings, allowing just one hit and a walk with four strikeouts.

"If you had to say a guy at the beginning of the year that you didn't expect, you could almost make him our MVP, especially if we get into the playoffs," Sveum said. "He's done everything we've asked of him, and he's done an awesome job."

It was another big outing for McClung, who has allowed just one run in his last five outings and evened his record at 6-6 this season. Aside from his dominance on the mound, he also contributed at the plate.

McClung reached on a catcher's interference with one out in the sixth and advanced to second on a balk by Gaudin.

He crossed the plate with the go-ahead run on Weeks' homer.

Not long after Weeks popped out of the dugout for a curtain call following his homer, the out-of-town scoreboard flashed the final score from the Mets-Marlins game, sending the crowd of 44,084 into a frenzy.

"It was one of the better feelings we've had in the game," Sveum said. "Knowing all you have to do is hold a lead and be one game up for a wild card, that's huge."

With an eye on locking down a playoff berth, Ben Sheets will make his first start since Sept. 17, when he left after two innings with a sore right arm, looking to nail down a postseason berth.

"It's a big game for us," Sheets said. "My arm feels like it's going to let me go out there and pitch."