For the second time in three games the Milwaukee Brewers wasted a very good outing from their starting pitcher and fell to the San Francisco Giants, this one a 4-2 setback on Wednesday afternoon.
After giving up a run in the first inning, Matt Garza settled in, going five innings, allowing five hits and striking out six. Reliever Josh Hader pitched a scoreless sixth inning but Jacob Barnes and Carlos Torres were exposed for three runs in the seventh and eighth innings.
Milwaukee may have been able to overcome that, but its offense did not make the trip to San Francisco. The Brewers managed just six runs in the three-game series, including two on Wednesday, which came courtesy of a Travis Shaw double in the first inning and a solo homer from Stephen Vogt in the bottom of the ninth.
The loss dropped the Crew three games back of Chicago in the NL Central and 3.5 games back of Arizona in the race for the final Wildcard spot.
It doesn’t get any easier for manager Craig Counsell’s club as they’ll finish off the nine-game road trip by visiting the Los Angeles Dodgers for a three-game series starting on Friday. LA has the best record in all of baseball and have lost just 14 home games all season.
Milwaukee fell for a fourth-straight time on Wednesday night, this one a 4-0 setback to Minnesota at Miller Park.
The Brewers couldn’t get anything going against 44-year-old Bartolo Colon, who scattered five hits over seven innings of work to get the win and improve to 4-9 on the year and 2-1 since signing with the Twins in early July. Milwaukee had just six base runners all night, and went 0-4 with runners in scoring position. It was the 13th straight game where the Crew failed to score more than four runs.
“There’s frustration, of course. I think when you do struggle to score runs there is frustration,” Milwaukee manager Craig Counsell said. “That’s OK and that’s natural. But you’ve got to come back tomorrow and understand that there is a lot of opportunity in front of us. When you wake up tomorrow, that’s how you see it.”
Like much of the second half of the season, Milwaukee got good enough pitching to win. Making his second career start, Brandon Woodruff allowed two runs over 5 2/3rds innings of work but ended up taking the loss. Reliever Jacob Barnes gave up the other two runs on the night.
While the loss didn’t drop them further back of the Cubs in the NL Central – Chicago’s lead is still at 1.5 games – the Brewers do have some company in second place, as St. Louis beat Kansas City 8-5 to pull into a tie with Milwaukee.
The Brewers will try to salvage one game of their four-game interleague series with the Twins tonight at Miller Park. First pitch is set for 7:10 p.m.
Another tough night for the Milwaukee bullpen helped Washington get past the Brewers 8-5 on Wednesday night.
Starter Jimmy Nelson was relieved following a four-pitch walk to open the eighth inning, exiting with a 2-1 lead after seven strong innings of work where he allowed just one run on four hits and struck out 10. But a pair of hits, including a two-run double by Ryan Zimmerman off Jacob Barnes, cost the Crew the lead. After Josh Hader came on to strikeout Bryce Harper, manager Craig Counsell went to Jared Hughes, who proceeded to give up four runs before getting the final out.
“Jacob did a nice job. He got two ground balls. Jacob’s been our eighth-inning guy, and to me, he did his job tonight,” Counsell said. “Unfortunately, [the ground balls] found holes. Josh did his job. I thought we had it setup kind of the way we wanted to with [with Hughes] and some matchups. It just didn’t work.”
Milwaukee nearly got the tying run to the plate in the top of the ninth thanks to a two-run homer from Lewis Brinson, the organization’s top prospect who had been called up earlier in the day. Hernan Perez also had a run scoring double in the frame.
The loss dropped Milwaukee out of first place, and they are now ½ game back of the Chicago Cubs in the NL Central.
The Brewers and Nationals will play their rubber match on Thursday, with first pitch coming at 11:05 a.m.
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The Milwaukee Brewers ruined Opening Day in Toronto last night, coming out 4-3 winners against the Blue Jays.
The Crew got another very good outing from Wily Peralta, who picked up his second win of the season by going six innings, giving up three runs on five hits and striking out seven. The veteran also walked four.
His outing was backed by a trio of relievers – Jacob Barnes, Corey Knebel and Neftali Feliz – who didn’t allow a hit in the final three innings. Feliz earned his second save of the year with a 1-2-3 ninth inning.
Milwaukee was paced offensively by Domingo Santana, who had a pair of RBI’s, including a home run in the fifth inning that proved to be all the scoring the Brewers would need.
Outfielder Keon Boxton went 2 for 5 and hit the first home run of his season, while catcher Manny Pina continued his hot start with three hits in four plate appearances to push his batting average to .429 through eight games.
All of the damage Milwaukee did came against starter J.A. Happ, who fell to 0-2 on the year. He gave up the four runs on nine hits, while also striking out eight batters.
The win snapped a two-game losing streak for Milwaukee, while the Blue Jays fell to 1-5 on the year, the worst start in franchise history.
The second and final game of the quick interleague series is tonight at the Rogers Centre. First pitch is set for 6:07 p.m.