With the way the season has been going for the Milwaukee Brewers, it’s not astonishing that many players aren’t happy – specifically Ryan Braun. Out of everyone, Braun has voiced the most frustration and demonstrated his limited patience with losing. He’s even called out the starting pitchers, begging them to pitch more than five innings. If a player like Braun, who rarely shares his gripes, starts openly complaining about the lack of competiveness his team is showing, it’s obvious team is in shambles.
While Braun’s numbers have once again been impressive this season, his frustrations have commenced at the plate. He’s striking out more than ever (22.6%) but has also been the victim of some “what in the world are you looking at, ump?” called-third strikes. He was ejected against the Chicago Cubs on April 21 for flinging his bat in the air after striking out on a questionable pitch. But that was just the tip of the iceberg. Since then, whenever he goes down looking, you can expect his bat to be somewhere in the air. His anger isn’t only aimed at the umpire but also his team. He’s sick of losing and disgusted by the way the Brewers have been playing of late. While I understand his motives, there are better ways to handle disappointment than to launch your bat with 30,000 eyes staring down at you.
After the series loss to the Los Angeles Dodgers, the Brewers’ left fielder finally gave the media something to write about. Here’s what Braun had to say following the loss:
It hasn’t been good. We’re just barely even competitive. It’s been horrendous. Terrible. We have to do everything better. Coming into the year, we expected to be able to compete for a postseason spot, to have an opportunity to win our division, and we’re not doing anything well enough to even belong in that conversation. We’ve been terrible. Horrible. Without many signs of doing anything better. It just hasn’t been good.
That’s not exactly music to the manager’s ears. If your All-Star is dropping words like “horrendous” and “terrible”, your seat is probably a little warm.
Ryan Braun and the Brewers have plenty of time to turn things around, even if they are 12.5 games back in the NL Central. The way back to fruition starts today against the Minnesota Twins. The Twins are in rebuilding mode with a bunch of young players receiving playing time. Losing the series to the Twins is the worst thing that can happen to Milwaukee. Braun’s frustration flame will get hotter and tempers will grow.
Do you think Ryan Braun is justified for being peeved?