Well, here we go. The game is underway. My goal is to talk with all of you in the comment section as the game goes on. So please feel free to say hi, or voice you concerns, etc.
Yesterday the Crew errupted for 5 runs in the 7th inning to cap an 8-2 win. That means today’s game is for the sweep of the Pittsburgh Swashbucklers. Brandon Boggs, Prince Fielder, and Ryan Braun each hit home runs. Chris Narveson pitched 6 terrific innings of one run baseball. LaTroy Hawkins continued his triumphant return from the DL, by pitching yet another perfect inning.
It was nice to see someone other than Braun and Fielder knock in runs. Craig Counsell, Casey McGehee, Brandon Boggs, and Jon Lucroy all contributed at least on RBI. No matter how bad this team is playing, it seems that the Pirates bring out the best in them. In last night’s 7th inning, Corey Hart pinch hit for the pitcher and got 2 AB’s that inning, which is always nice to see.
SPECIAL NOTE: Make sure to hit your refresh button frequently, for up to the second game updates.
Now on too today. Shaq Greinke is up against Kevin Correia. This will not be an easy game for our boys. Correia is 5-3 this season, with a 3.25 ERA. A win today would give our boys sole possession of 3rd place in the division. Let’s also keep in mind, the Reds and Cardinals are playing today so one of them are going to lose today. A complete sweep puts us at 19-21 on the season, and inevitably put us within striking distance of the division lead.
Without further adieu, may I present to you all: The Return of the Wrath of the Live Game Blog
Pre-Game: Beautiful Day today, but that probably means the roof is going to be open. So we are going to see some major shadows on the field. This is good for the Brewers and the opposite of good for the Pirates. Here’s today’s lineup real quick: Weeks, Gomez, Braun, Fielder, McGehee, Hart, Betancourt, Lucroy, and Shazaam himself (another Shaq joke, I need to come up with new material).
Top of the 1st inning: And we’re off!! Quick out, but it was hit really hard. Greinke strikes out the 2nd batter he faces. That slider just tails hard right, the moment it hits the plate. 1-2-3 inning for Greinke. 2 Hard hit balls, but Corey Hart had them both played perfectly. Greinke looks very confident right out of the gate. Let’s see if the offense can give him some breathing room.
Bottom of the 1st: Terrific cut by Rickie Weeks. Runner on first, no outs. The announcers are talking about Brandon Boggs not getting a start today after his performance yesterday. Boggs is a really good player. Carlos Gomez just worked a count from 0-2 to 3-2, then knocks a base hit. Runner’s at first and second, no one out. Here comes Braun. 3-RUN HOMER!!!!!! Why can’t they do this all of the time? What a way to jump all over Correia. Talk about destroying a pitchers confidence. That ball was crushed. Fielder hit a weak little pop-up. Happens. 1 out. Casey McGehee HOMER to deep Center Field. McCutcheon lost his glove over the fence trying to catch it. YEAH!!!!!!!!!!!!!! 4-0 Brewers!!! Somebody got McCutcheon his glove back, we can resume play. Nice effort. Hart ground outt o shortstop. 2 outs. Betancourt singles. This is just great. Runner on first with 2 outs. Hard hit by Lucroy, but right at 2nd base. 3 outs. 4 run inning though, now Greinke can really cut loose.
Pirates 0 vs Brewers 4
Top of 2nd: Greinke has retired the first 4 batters he’s faced. Looking strong. Greinke strikes out another batter with that devastating slider. That ball literally tunrs at a right angle. He looks awesome. He also just struck out his 3rd batter. 6 stright outs to start the game, plus he is keeping the pitch count low. Is it just me, or is that jersey too big for him?
Bottom of 2nd: Wow, I honestly just thought Greinke hit a home run. Put a huge charge into that ball. Sadly McCutcheon had his glove this time. 1 out. Weeks got caught half swinging. It was a tough pitch, really nice breaking ball. 2 outs. Carlos Gomez took a walk. Everything is going our way so far. Runner on first, Braun is up. Just fouled it off his foot. Looked painful. Braun with an RBI triple. Are we looking at the league MVP? I think so. Carlos Gomez was absolutely flying around the bases. Braun has 4 RBI’s today, it’s the second inning. Fielder grounds out to end the inning.
Pirates 0 vs Brewers 5
Top or 3rd: One pitch, one out. Greinke has retired 7 straight. Fly ball to Corey Hart. Caught. 2 outs. Greinke has been surgical so far. Weak grounder to shortstop. 3 up and 3 down for the third time…333…or is it 666? Either way, Greinke is spitting hot fire right now.
Bottom of 3rd: Casey McGehee leads off with a double. Everything is going right this afternoon. Runner on base #2, 0 outs. How much longer are the Pirates going to leave Correia in? He is getting worked over. Corey Hart was inches from his 1st home run of the season. Hart is finding his stroke, which is nice to see. However, 1 out and McGehee is at 3rd. Weirdest thing I have ever seen. McCutcheon caught a fly ball and dropped the ball in his exchange to throw. Then McGehee didn’t try to score. Very confusing play. Doesn’t matter, because Jon Lucroy knocked a double into center. McGehee scores, Lucroy to 2nd base. It looks like Correia is just about done. Ground out. 3 outs, but the Crew gets another run.
Pirates 0 vs Brewers 6
Top of 4th: Greinke has a really low putch count right now. Complete game is not out of the realm of possibilities at this point. Ball boy just made an error and then slapped his helmet. That kid takes his voluntary job way to seriously. Greinke retired his 10th straight batter, 1 out. This is why we traded for this guy. When he is on, he is one of the best in baseball. Greinke has throw a lot of pitches to Tabata, then walked him. Double play ball would be terrific. Not necessary, but terrific. Ask and you shall recieve!!! Doubel play ends the inning. Greinke has yet to allow a hit. I didn’t say it, but I am implying it.
Bottom of 4th: Ron Roenicke looks really somber in the dugout. Smile guy, your up 6 runs. No need to be a crabby pants. Rickie Weeks grounds out. 1 out. Gomez hits a pop-up of the end of his bat. 2 outs. Here comes Braun, who already has a home run and a triple. Ryan Braun is not above taking a walk. He has reached base in all 3 AB’s today. Being on base when Fielder is up…never a bad thing. Prince put a nice charge into it, but right at the left fielder. 3 outs. First inning without a run for the Crew today.
Pirates 0 vs Brewers 6
Top of 5th: The FSN Wisconsin film crew just showed four 50 year old women, with 8 beers lined up in front of them. It looked pretty staged. Something tells me that those broads days of double-fisting beers is over. Greinke is working a 10 pitch at-bat to Neil Walker. Wow, after a 12 pitch battle, Greinke loses the no-hitter and shut-out. Walker hits a solo-home run to right center field. Lyle Overbay just struck out. Nice to see Zack bounce right back. Greinke gets the next batter to pop out to center field. 2 outs. Snyder rips a double into the gap. 2nd hit allowed by Greinke today. It looks like Correia’s day could be over for the Pirates, if Ronny Cedeno gets on base here. Uh-oh, back to back doubles. Another run scores. The Pirates have removed Correia from the game, a pinch hitter has been brought in to try and keep this little rally alive for the Peg-legs. Holy poop, 3 doubles in a row. Now we have an actual ballgame. Three run 5th inning thus far for the Pirates. WHAT IS HAPPENING?!?!?!!?!? McCutcheon knocks a triple into right center field, another run scores. Another base hit, this is now a 1-run game. 5 straight hits against Greinke. This inning has gotten way out of hand. Most of these hits have come with 2 outs. Greinke seems to lose momentum as he goes deeper into games. This could still be a fatigue issue, seeing as it’s only his 3rd start this season. Greinke has now thrown 50 pitches this inning. Not good. Finally, a strike out mercifully ends this horrible 5th inning.
Pirates 5 vs Brewers 6
Bottom of 5th: We need to score a run or two. This is way too close for comfort. McGehee gets out (sorry I don’t have more details, full bladder). Corey Hart cracks a nice single between the 3rd baseman and shorstop. Shocker. Betancourt swings at the first pitch and pops out. 2 outs. Not really working the count this inning. HOME RUN!!!!!!!Jonathan Lucroy launches a hanging curveball into deep left field. Corey Hart will score on the long bomb. Lucroy might be the most underrated catcher in baseball. This home plate umpire is really inconsistent. His strike zone is not nearly as wide for Greinke as it was on the last pitch. That ball was pretty far outside and he rung-up Brandon Boggs. 3 outs. Brewers get 2 runs back.
Pirates 5 vs Brewers 8
Top of 6th: Greinke is done for today, but is still in line for the win. Marco Estrada will work the 6th inning for the Beer Guzzlers. One pitch-one out. So far so good. Greinke gave up 5 runs in 5 innings, not terrific but looks like it might still do the job. Marco Estrada is a terrific pitcher. He has done an amazing job for us this season. Now we have 2 outs. Had a little internet connectivity problem, so I lost everything for a second. I hate when that happens. 2-out base hit for the Pirates. Runner on first. Estrada strikes out the Pirates catcher, who argues the call and gets tossed from the game. Bye bye. In his defense, this umpire has been really questionable all afternoon.
Pirates 5 vs Brewers 8
Bottom of 6th: Ok, so now there is confusion over who is actually thrown out of the game. The umps are talking to Roenicke now, which is curious. Weeks slaps another one int left field, base hit. So, Snyder is officially gone from this game. Everyone else is fine. Rickie Weeks steals 2nd base easily. Ryan Doumit never had a chance to throw out Rickie. Gomez struck out golfing at a ball in the dirt. Here comes Big Bad Braun. This is another RBI opportunity for him. They are going to intentionally walk Braun…to get to Fielder? Whatever floats your boat Clint Hurdle, Manager of the Pirates. Talk about playing with fire. Fielder wanted that first pitch worse than he wants a hoagie. 91 MPH up in the zone. Well the strategy works, as Fielder grounds into a double play. Innings over.
Pirates 5 vs Brewers 8
Top of 7th: Nice catch by Braun in foul territory. He has been on base all 4 AB’s today. McCutcheon pops out, and now the inning is over. Missed the 1st out…sorry everyone. 1-2-3 inning. 7th inning stretch. Time to close this baby down. Marco Estrada has another terrific outing.
Pirates 5 vs Brewers8
Bottom of 7th: McGehee hits one hard to third. 3rd baseman fields the ball, but throws it into the stands. Throwing error for Pedro Alvarez. McGehee moves to 2nd base. Corey Hart smashes one to dead center, but it was not deep enough to clear the fence. It was deep enough to move McGehee over to 3rd base with 1 out. Pirates are going to make a pitching change. Man, Clint Hurdle just chomps that gum. Imagine what he does to a steak. Betancourt just needs a deep pop-up to score that insurance run on 3rd base. Yuni just tried a suicide squeeze bunt. It would have worked, had the ball not trickled foul. Wild Pitch!!! McGehee scores easily. Should probably be scored as a passed ball. Clearly, Doumit is getting picked on, he just took over 2 innings ago after Snyder got ejected. Yuni pops up. 2 outs. Lucroy socks one to center, but only to the warning track. 3 outs.
Pirates 5 vs Brewers 9
Top of 8th: Looks like Estrada might come out for this inning too. If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it. Nope. Kameron Loe is out there for the 8th inning. Kam Loe strikes out the first batter he faces. 1 out. That sinker is nasty when he can place it. Ground ball, 2 outs. Loe walks Neil Walker with 2 outs. Prince Fielder grabs a grounder on a high hop and takes it to the bag himslef. 3 outs. When this bullpen is clicking, they are a force to be reckoned with. Sadly they only seem to click at Miller Park…kind of like the rest of the team.
Pirates 5 vs Brewers 9
Bottom of 8th: Craig Counsell draws the pinch hit walk. Runner on 1st, nobody out. Weeks grounds to short and they can only get the out at 2nd base. Weeks reaches on a fielder’s choice. One out, man on 1st base. Another Pirates pitching change. Rickie Weeks steals 2nd base, for the 2nd time today. Ryan Doumit just does not have a rifle arm…at all. Gomez strikes out. 2 away. Ryan Braun is up, let’s see what he can do this time. Boy, the Pirates pitcher Hanahan throws smoke. High 90′s fastballs all day. Awww, Braun records his first out of the game. Ground ball to 1st. Well, he can’t get a hit everytime. Let’s get these last 3 outs!!!
Pirates 5 vs Brewers 9
Top of 9th: Axford takes the mound to close down the series. Damn, that mustache looks intimidating. Off to a bad start, gives up a base hit to the first batter he faces. Uh-oh, high flyball drops in-between Hart and Weeks. Runners on 1st and 2nd with nobody out. NO WAY!!! Another little flare splits Hart, Weeks, and Fielder. A run scores. 1st and 2nd with no one out. Yuni Betancourt makes a terrific stop on a ball hit right up the middle. Took the only out, which was at first. Runners on 2nd and 3rd with 1 out. This is way too close for my personal comfort. Axford just walked the bases loaded. I love John, he is a friend of the site, but they need to get him out of there. He clearly does not have it right now. This is not good at all. Whew!! They turn the double play to end the game. Break out the Brooms!!!!!!!!
Thank you everyone for joining me on this unique journey. The Brewers finish their home stand with a 5-1 record. Overall, they are 19-21 and back within striking distance of the Cardinals and Reds.
Tomorrow the team will be in L.A to play the cash strapped Dodgers. They need to produce some wins on this California road trip. After some games in L.A the Crew will head down the coast to San Diego to play the Pappy’s again. Let’s hope their performance the last few days carries over.
Greinke get’s his 2nd win as a Brewer. Ryan Braun continues to prove that he is going to be an MVP contender this season. Enjoy the rest of your Sunday everyone. Talk to you all tomorrow.