9:26p I cannot tell you how happy I am that my first post will be about this incredible game. I’ve got a lot to go over, so let’s get started.
The Brewers made what was probably their best comeback win of the season so far, defeating the Twins 8-7.
Now, a few things stuck out that the Brewers don’t often do- they overcame a 7-0 deficit, something that many teams cannot do very often. Secondly, this win was on the road- and I think we all know what the Brewers have (or haven’t, in this case) been capable of on the road this year.
The game started out extremely ugly for the Brewers. The Twins jumped on starter Chris Narveson (5-5, 4.86 ERA) early in the 1st inning, as Danny Valencia knocked in Alexi Casilla for an RBI single.
Then, in the 3rd, Narveson’s struggles continued, as he gave up back-to-back homers to Michael Cuddyer and Valencia, giving the Twins an early 3-0 lead.
The 4th was probably Narveson’s worst inning. He gave up five consecutive hits, with RBIs by Cuddyer, Valencia, Luke Hughes, and Jason Repko. He would eventually get out of it, but only lasted 4 2/3 innings. He gave up 7 runs on a career-high 14 hits allowed, while striking out one and walking two.
The Brewers finally started a rally against Twins starter Carl Pavano in the 5th, but it came in an odd yet convenient way. Yuniesky Betancourt singled with one out in the inning, then Mark Kotsay flew out to fairly deep center. Betancourt, surprisingly, attempted to tag up on the out, and center fielder Ben Revere’s throw appeared to be on the money, but the replays showed otherwise. Casilla had dove to tag Betancourt out before he got to 2nd, and wound up doing what looked like a cartwheel. Betancourt then jumped over Casilla’s tag, and landed on 2nd safely. Twins manager Ron Gardenhire came out to argue, but the safe call remained. Jonathan Lucroy proceeded to drive in Betancourt with an RBI single, but Pavano got out of the strange inning after that. The Brewers would go on to score again in the 6th inning on Nyjer Morgan’s 2-run homer, making the game 7-3, and that would be the end of the scoring for awhile. Relievers Marco Estrada and Takashi Saito held the Twins offense scoreless until the ninth, when the Brewers would make their final strike.
Twins closer Matt Capps was in for the save, but the Brewers had other ideas. The inning started with Betancourt singling to center, then Kotsay followed up with a single of his own, advancing Betancourt to 3rd. Lucroy then drove in Betancourt and advanced Kotsay to 2nd with an RBI single. Capps then got a big out, inducing a Craig Counsell pop up. He also got Rickie Weeks to fly out, but Kotsay advanced to 3rd. After that, the real rally started.
Morgan, who was celebrating his 31st birthday, hit a 2-RBI double to deep right center, which tied the game at 7-7. George Kottaras, pinch-hitting for Carlos Gomez, came up and drove in what would be the winning run with a single. That would end Capps’ night, who was booed off the mound after blowing his AL-leading 6th blown save. Phil Dumatrait then came in to finish the inning. John Axford came in the bottom of the 9th and pitched a 1-2-3 inning, including a game-ending strikeout of pinch-hitter Jim Thome, for his 21st save of the year.
Brewers snap 4-game losing streak
With the win tonight, the Brewers snapped a depressing 4-game losing streak, giving them a 1-4 record on this road trip. The losing streak started with a sweep at the hands of the Yankees, then a loss to the Twins last night.
1st inning troubles continue for starting pitchers
Narveson gave up a run in the first inning today, but that wasn’t an uncommon theme for the Brewers recently. The Brewers have given up a total of 17 runs in all of the first innings combined during Interleague play.
Braun extends streak to 22
Ryan Braun extended his hitting streak to 22, the longest active hitting streak in the Majors right now, and a career-high for him. He went 1-for-4, the hit being a 4th inning double off of Pavano.
Up next for the Crew…
The Brewers will finish up the three-game set with the Twins tomorrow with a rubber match. The Twins will send Nick Blackburn (6-6, 3.64 ERA) to the mound. The Brewers will counter with Zack Greinke (7-3, 5.63 ERA), who will be hoping to rebound from his short outing against the Yankees. He gave up 7 runs in just 2 innings at Yankee Stadium, where his career ERA is 11.29.
Elsewhere around the division…
-The Pirates went 1-1 in a double-header with the Nationals. They are 2.5 games back.
-The Cubs offense faltered against the White Sox, despite Matt Garza’s complete game. They are 11 games back.
-The Astros were hammered by the Red Sox, 10-4. They are 16 games back.
-The Cardinals lost to the Rays, 5-1, allowing the Brewers to tie the Central lead.
-The Reds woes against the Indians continued, as they lost 3-1. They are 3 games back. (Even the Pirates are ahead of them. That’s saying something.)
So… I hope you guys enjoyed. This was my first official post, and I hope to continue posting like this on a day-to-day basis. I’m excited to keep doing this, as I’ve wanted to do something like this for a long time but never really had the guts to do it.
EDIT: The chart below was supposed to be the box score, haha. I’m still trying to figure out how to incorporate that into the post. It should be up within the hour.