Jeremy Jeffress set to return to Brewers

Veteran reliever Jeremy Jeffress is ready to return to the Brewers. He opened the season on the injured list after suffering shoulder weakness during Spring Training. Jeffress made four appearances in his minor-league stint with Class AAA San Antonio. In just over four innings, he allowed seven runs on nine hits with no walks and five strikeouts.

Manager Craig Counsell spoke about Jeffress on Sunday.

“He’s going to Milwaukee. He’ll be with us tomorrow. We’re going to meet before the game (against St. Louis) and discuss some pitching things. We’ll make a decision tomorrow. It’ll either be Monday or Tuesday (when Jeffress is activated).”

The bullpen started the 2019 season down a few key cogs. Jeffress, Corey Knebel and Josh Hader were all big contributors to Milwaukee’s run last year. However, this season the Brewers will be without Knebel. The return of Jeffress is huge for Milwaukee, especially if he can mirror his all-star season of 2018.

The 31-year old made a career high 73 appearances last year. He went 8-1 with a 1.29 ERA, 15 saves and 89 strikeouts.

Joe & Ebo Experience: New season. New facial hair.

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Rockin’ the soul patch (9:46)

Peter Wilt from Forward Madison FC (14:38)

Kyle Lesniewski from Brew Crew Ball (28:27)

Zone reporter Cody Grant  (39:42)

Cubs hate (53:36)

Joe & Ebo Experience: No Joe. No Ebo.

Knebel’s UCL (0:00)

Who’s your starting 5?(11:46)

The rules of baseball (26:35)

No worries (Bucks) (42:39)

Sports Director Zach Heilprin (54:21)

Brewers’ Corey Knebel has elbow issue

According to Todd Rosiak of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, Milwaukee Brewers’ manager Craig Counsell says there’s “reason for concern” with Corey Knebel’s elbow.

Knebel has been dealing with an issue and will visit a doctor on Thursday. Jeremy Jeffress is already dealing with a shoulder injury. Josh Hader could be the go-to closer early on in 2019.

Milwaukee has been in discussions with free agent closer Craig Kimbrel in recent days.

The Brewers’ bullpen was one of the best in the league last year but could be entering this season short two arms.

The Joe & Ebo Experience: Packers preseason opener

0:00-9:45: Intro & Scott Takes

9:45-14:04: Gone in 60

14:04-18:24: Knebel Struggles

18:24-26:51: Packers Recap & Thoughts

26:51-27:36: FREE KARL

27:36-31:58: JK Scott & Packers WR talk

31:58-35:39: Conrad is fired up again

35:59-39:45: News of the Weird

39:45-50:34: Brewers Bullpen

50:34-1:01:04: Tex Western

1:01:04-1:08:27: RJ Brachman

1:08:27-1:11:50: Action Zone

1:11:50-1:18:28: Packers WR & QB talk

1:18:28-1:19:34: Boylin’

1:19:34-1:29:34: Andrew Wagner

1:29:34-1:38:21: Scraps & Goodbye

Last strikes: Padres 8, Brewers 4

MILWAUKEE – Sixteen last strikes for the 16 batters faced by the Brewers bullpen in Milwaukee’s 8-4 loss to the San Diego Padres on Thursday afternoon.

1. Junior Guerra didn’t have his best day on the mound as he allowed eight hits on the afternoon but he did enough to limit the damage, holding the Padres to just two runs in six innings.

2. Overall, it seemed as if the Padres played a rather sloppy game, committing two errors and a couple other plays that easily could have been scored as such. Things looked great for the Brewers to win their second straight game over San Diego, and their fourth series in five tries.

3. That was, until the ninth inning when the Brewers fell apart on the mound.

4. Corey Knebel entered with Milwaukee leading 4-2 to start the frame. He struggled to throw strikes as 14 of his 26 pitches missed the zone. Knebel allowed the first three batters to reach via walks and the fourth on an RBI-infield single.

5. The infield single was a dribbler hit between the third base line and the mound. Knebel was the one to field it, however it looked as if he never had a good grip on the ball, causing his throw to the plate to be errant. The Brewers actually got lucky here for a moment as the throw hit San Diego’s Freddy Galvis as he scored and ricocheted off of home plate umpire Todd Tichenor.

6. After that debacle, manager Craig Counsell made the call to the bullpen to bring in Joakim Soria with the bases loaded, one run in, and zero outs. Soria retired the first batter he faced on a fly out to right field and a strong throw from Christian Yelich kept the game from being tied. The Padres still had the bases loaded, but the Brewers had an out and things looked much more manageable.

7. Hunter Renfroe then stepped to the plate following Eric Hosmer’s fly out. Renfroe proceed to deposit a 1-2 fastball into the left field seats for a grand slam. Just like that, Milwaukee’s 4-2 lead had turned into a 7-4 deficit.

8. To make bad news worse for the Brewers, Soria immediately left due a strained groin. Things kept piling on in the ninth, and they didn’t stop there.

9. Jacob Barnes then came on in relief of Soria due to his injury. The first batter Barnes faced was Franmil Reyes, and he was able to jump out in front 1-2 in the count. Then, on the sixth pitch of the at-bat, Reyes went deep to add on an extra run. The sixth run of the inning for the Padres made the game 8-4, where it would finish.

10. The Brewers bullpen has been outstanding for the majority of the season, but that hasn’t been the case as of late. Milwaukee has blown multi-run leads in two of the last three games. In the series opener on Tuesday night All-Star Josh Hader took the loss before Knebel’s struggles on Thursday. Pair that in with Soria’s injury and this unit may be in some trouble.

11. Blown saves happen. They’ve happened to the greatest closers of all-time and they’re absolutely going to happen to Knebel from time to time. His fastball velocity is still topping out above 98 miles-per-hour (three times on Thursday), but if he cannot throw it for a strike, it becomes useless. Not being able to find the strike zone as the case was Thursday is a definite reason for concern.

12. As for the rest of the bullpen, Hader has faded a bit since his early season dominance. There’s nothing wrong with that, either. If he would have kept up the pace from his early season run, this year possibly could have gone down as the greatest ever by a reliever. He’s still been very good, just not the strikeout machine he was in May.

13. Soria’s injury could potentially be a big blow to the depth in the bullpen for the Brewers. He’s going to miss at least the next few days as he heals, and a stint on the disabled list certainly isn’t out of the question for him. His acquisition seemed like a move where the Brewers were just the rich getting richer, but right now it looks like it’s needed. Sure, Burnes has been very good at times for the Brewers, but it’s still very early for him and it will be interesting to watch how he responds to the pressure ramping up as the postseason race tightens up late this month and into September.

14. On the bright side for the Brewers, Jonathan Schoop collected his first extra-base hit for the team as well as his first run batted in. He had a two-run double in the fourth inning that pushed the Brewers’ lead to 3-1. He later scored on a terrific base running play, capitalizing on an error by San Diego’s Galvis at shortstop.

15. If Schoop can get going that will mean great things for the Milwaukee offense. The rich will certainly get richer in that sense.

16. The Brewers get back in action on Friday night in Atlanta as they take on the Braves. Freddy Peralta will get the start for the Brewers while Kevin Gausman will be on the hill for Atlanta. First pitch is set for 6:35 p.m. CT.

Brewers close home stand with loss to Cleveland

The Milwaukee Brewers finished a five-game homestead with a 2-3 record after splitting two games with the Cleveland Indians.

After taking the first game of the series 3-2, the Brewers fell to the Indians 6-2 on Wednesday afternoon. Junior Guerra started for the Brewers, pitching five innings, allowing four runs on six hits while striking out nine. He was hurt by the long ball as he allowed a three-run home run to Cleveland outfielder Tyler Naquin as part of a four-run fourth inning.

It was difficult for the Brewers to generate much offensively against Indians pitcher Carlos Carrasco. Carrasco pitched a complete-game, allowing just two runs on five hits while striking out 14 on the day. Outfielder Lorenzo Cain collected Milwaukee’s only extra base hit on the afternoon, a double in the eighth inning.

The loss dropped Milwaukee to 21-16 on the season, tied for second place in the NL Central.

The Brewers now begin an 11-day, three-city road trip against the Colorado Rockies on Thursday night at 7:40 p.m.

News and Notes

The Brewers made two roster moves on Wednesday prior to the game against the Cleveland Indians. The Brewers placed pitcher Wade Miley on the 10-day disabled list with a strained right oblique suffered in his start on Tuesday night. Milwaukee also placed utility man Nick Franklin on the 10-day DL with a strained right quad suffered Tuesday night while beating out a potential double-play. It was Franklin’s season debut after spending the beginning of the season in the minor leagues.

Milwaukee activated closer Corey Knebel from the disabled list prior to the game on Wednesday against the Indians. He pitched one inning against Cleveland Wednesday afternoon allowing a solo home run to Indians shortstop Francisco Lindor.

Tyler Salidino was also re-called from Triple-A to take the place of Franklin. He did not play on Wednesday.

The Brewers are also expected to activate reliever Boone Logan from the disabled list on Thursday prior to Milwaukee’s game in Colorado. Logan has missed the entire season to date with a left triceps injury.

The 10-game, three-city road trip for the Brewers is the longest of the season. After a four-game series in Colorado, the Crew will travel to Arizona for a three-game set and then wrap things up in Minnesota against the Twins for three games.

After the road trip, the Brewers will have a season-high 10-game homestead against Arizona, the New York Mets, and St. Louis Cardinals.

Brewers announce award winners

While the Milwaukee Brewers were unable to find their way into the postseason they did have a season not many expected. Today they announced which players have been honored with team postseason awards, as voted on by a five-person committee from the Milwaukee Chapter of the Baseball Writers Association of America.

Brewers pitcher Brent Suter was voted as the team’s Unsung Hero winner. This year Suter bounced back and forth between Milwaukee and the minor leagues. He spent six separate stints with the Brewers, going 3-2 with a 3.42 earned run average in 22 games for the club. He made 14 starts for the team. Last year’s winner of the award was Hernán Pérez.

Sticking on the pitching staff, closer Corey Knebel was named the team’s Most Valuable Pitcher. Knebel made 76 appearances for the team, totaling 76 saves while posting a 1.78 ERA. He also was tied for the Major League lead in strikeouts by a reliever with 126, which was a team record. Knebel also set the Major League record for most consecutive relief appearances with a strikeout at 45. Last season Junior Guerra took home the award.

Third baseman Travis Shaw takes home multiple awards, winning the team Most Valuable Player and Newcomer of the Year. He was acquired via a trade with the Boston Red Sox last offseason. Shaw hit .273 with 31 home runs and 101 runs batted in for the Brewers this year. Shaw unseats Ryan Braun, who had been the team’s MVP the previous two seasons.

Brewers beat Pittsburgh 1-0, move to within a game of Colorado in wild card race

The Milwaukee Brewers continued their push towards the postseason Tuesday night with a 1-0 shutout victory over Pittsburgh.

Chase Anderson threw six scoreless innings with eight strikeouts to pick up his 11th win of the year, though it didn’t come easy. In the sixth inning, Pittsburgh managed to get a runner to third with no outs. Anderson had an answer though, getting Andrew McCutchen to strike out and then a pair of fly balls to get out of the inning.

With Anderson’s night done, the duo of Anthony Swarzak and Corey Knebel came on to finish things off, with the latter picking up his 37th save. It was Milwaukee’s 12th shutout this year and the fourth in the month of September alone.

The only offense Milwaukee got – or needed – came courtesy of a solo home run in the fourth inning from Domingo Santana, his 26th long ball of the year.

Thanks to a walk-off win by San Francisco over Colorado, the Brewers moved to within one game of the Rockies in the race for the final wild card spot in the National League. The Crew remained 3 ½ games back of Chicago in the NL Central after the Cubs won their seventh straight game.

Milwaukee will finish off its series with the Pirates tonight before coming home for four games against the Cubs at Miller Park.