Milwaukee earned its first series win of the season with a 3-0 victory at Pittsburgh on Wednesday night that featured a dominating pitching effort from the Brewers.
Starter Brandon Woodruff allowed just one hit — an infield single — over 6 1/3 innings of work and struck out 10 Pirates to pick up the win. It was the most strikeouts he’s had in a game since fanning 12 last June against Cincinnati, and the first time he’s given up just one hit in a start longer than six innings since last May against Philadelphia.
“I liked anything (and) everything,” manager Craig Counsell said of Woodruff’s performance. “He was just brilliant, really. Overpowering I think is probably the word that best describes it.”
The overlay of these 2 pitches is why @B_Woody24 is an absolute star.
A 98mph fastball vs an 87mph change-up. Same release, same spin, 11mph difference in velo. Add a slider and a curve and it is off the charts stuff. pic.twitter.com/FtgTp2K7h0
— Brian Anderson (@BAndersonPxP) July 30, 2020
A trio of relievers — David Phelps, Devin Williams and Josh Hader — finished off the shutout, the first of the season for Milwaukee. Hader earned the save, his first of the year.
Overall it was the 18th time in Brewers history they allowed one hit or fewer and they improved to 17-1 in those games.
Josh Hader with a slider so nasty it both strikes out and hits Erik Gonzalez. pic.twitter.com/NNOpN10Nc3
— Scott Grodsky (@ScottGrodsky) July 30, 2020
Milwaukee’s offense wasn’t dynamic but it did enough. Ben Gamel continued a solid start to the year with a two-run homer off of Pittsburgh starter Joe Musgrave in the third inning. Then, Keston Huira hit his second bomb of the series in the sixth, a solo shot to give the Brewers a 3-0 cushion.
The one concerning aspect of the game was the obvious struggles of Christian Yelich. The left fielder went 0-for-5 on the night and is now 1-for-27 this season.
Milwaukee’s win even its record at 3-3. The club will get Thursday off before holding its home opener against St. Louis on Friday afternoon at Miller Park.