Brewers fire manager Yost in midst of playoff race

MILWAUKEE (AP) _ The Milwaukee Brewers fired manager Ned Yost on Monday, hoping to pull out of another late-season slump that has jeopardized the team’s chance of making the playoffs for the first time since 1982. Third-base coach Dale Sveum will take over as interim manager for the remainder of the season. The Brewers have lost seven of eight and fallen into a tie with Philadelphia for the NL wild-card lead. At 83-67, the Brewers have just 12 games to rebound. Milwaukee came into this month with a 5½-game lead in the wild card, but since has lost 11 of 14 âÄî including a four-game sweep completed by the Phillies over the weekend. The Brewers were idle Monday, and was scheduled to begin a three-game series with the Central-leading Chicago Cubs at Wrigley Field on Tuesday. “This was a very difficult move to make, and we appreciate all of the work that Ned has done to develop this team into a contender,” general manager Doug Melvin said in a statement. “In the end, this was a collaborative decision made to put our club in the best position for the final two weeks of the season.” The team scheduled a news conference Monday night in Chicago. Yost did not immediately return a message left on his cell phone by The Associated Press. Members of NL Central rivals Chicago and Houston, who played another neutral-site game in Milwaukee on Monday after Hurricane Ike made it too difficult to play their scheduled series in Houston over the weekend, expressed surprise at the move. “That was a shocker,” Astros owner Drayton McLane said. “Has a team ever done that at this point of the season this close to the playoffs?” It was not known whether there had been a similar firing in the majors. In 1983, Philadelphia fired Pat Corrales when it was in first place with a 43-42 record. Under Paul Owens, the Phillies reached the World Series.