Marcum, Betancourt help Crew take down Giants

12:03a Sorry I haven’t posted the past two games. As I keep saying, these west coast games are a pain to cover. But, I’ve got some time on my hands late at night right now, so I figured I should get up an article on this game.

Brewers-Giants Wrap-Up

The Brewers defeated the Giants today, 4-2. Yuniesky Betancourt, who, before this road trip, was mired in an all-season slump, stayed hot and drove in two runs. Jonathan Lucroy also drove in two runs.

Shaun Marcum got the win, improving to 9-3 and continuing his success against the NL West. He went seven innings while giving up two runs on four hits. He walked none and struck out five. Matt Cain was on the losing end, going six innings while giving up four runs (three earned) on eight hits. He walked one and struck out two.

John Axford came in to finish the game and recorded his 27th save of the season.

(Sorry this isn’t the long and in-depth coverage I usually give of the game. I’m sort of tired right now and don’t want to spend too much time on this.)

Bottom half of the order continues to deliver

The bottom half of the Brewers’ lineup has heated up since the All-Star break, and they continued that today. Lucroy and Betancourt both drove in two runs, accounting for the four runs that the Brewers scored today.

Over the past few series, Betancourt, who struggled early on, has improved his batting average by 13 points, which is very tough to do at this point in the season.

Axford continues save streak

Axford got his 27th save of the season today, and his 24th consecutive save. He is one away from tying the franchise record of consecutive saves, which is currently 25. Also, his 24 consecutive saves mark his total amount of saves he had last year in his rookie season.

This doesn’t have anything to do with the save streak, but Francisco Rodriguez looked good today, tossing a perfect eighth inning with two strikeouts. He bounced back from a rough outing in Arizona the day before yesterday, when he blew a lead of two runs.

Up next for the Crew…

The Brewers will take on the Giants again tomorrow and will send Randy Wolf (6-7, 3.58 ERA) to the mound. He’s had some success against the Giants in his career, going 9-5 with a 2.77 ERA against them. That includes a complete game shutout he tossed against them last year at AT&T Park.

The Giants will counter with their best story of the year- Ryan Vogelsong (7-1, 2.02 ERA). He’s pitching in the Majors for the first time since 2006, and is making the most of it- he currently leads the NL in ERA at 2.02. His numbers against the Brewers are pretty ugly- 1-3 with a 6.98 ERA. I’m guessing those numbers are mostly from his days with the Pirates, but he’s a far different pitcher than he was then, so the Brewers can expect a challenge tomorrow.

Elsewhere around the division…

  • The Cubs defeated the Astros, 4-2. They are 13.5 and 20 games back, respectively. (Yeah… We can pretty much count them out of the division at this point.)
  • The Cardinals beat the Pirates, 6-4. Both of them remain looking up at the Brewers in the Central, as they are both one game back.
  • The Reds lost to the Braves, 6-4. They are five games back and are falling out of contention. (That’s a good thing, because we don’t need another team to worry about at this point in the season.)
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