The day that I had been longing for since Christmas, was a huge punch in the face. I do not mean that Zack himself was a disappointment. What I mean is that his first game as a Brewer was an over all disappointment. Zack-a-Shaq actually looked pretty good in the first 3 innings, then in the 4th you could see his velocity start to dip. That is when things got nasty.
Zack threw over 30 pitches in the first inning. That is not his fault, two errors lead to the inning lasting entirely too long. In the second inning he gave up a walk, but then starting to get a little momentum…that is until a base hit scored the runner he had walked. Third inning looked terrific, no errors and no runs. The fourth inning saw back to back doubles, followed by a Nate McLouth home run. The home run was a upper 80’s fastball right down the middle of the plate. All of a sudden the score is 5-0 and the Brewers only had 1 hit (which never changed). This is what we should have expected from Greinke. Sometimes you need to get out there and shake of the rust against big league hitters.
Overall, I thought Greinke looked pretty good. Of course he made some mistakes, but he looks like a guy who will give us the opportunity to win every time he is on the mound. In the first few innings you could tell that he was all jacked up on Mountain Dew. His 2 seamer was looking filthy, the movement on his slider was almost unbelievable.
Alas, as the pitch count kept climbing you could see the fatigue setting in. Zack started leaving things up and his velocity just spiraled downward with each pitch that he threw. To only make it through 4 innings in your first start of the year is not too bad, especially when you consider that he has really only appeared in 3 games prior to this. Zack had no spring games to fine tune his game. All he had was one Double-A and two Triple-A starts, both of which had very strict pitch counts for him. I honestly believe that this was not a terrible first outing. Greinke gave us some things to look forward to last night…I wish I could say the same for the rest of the team.
In the past I would have ripped the team apart, but I have learned that you catch more fans with honey than vinegar. I will just let the statistics do the talking.
- During this current 5 game losing streak, the Brewers are scoring 1 run ever 71/2 innings
- The most runs scored in a game during the losing streak is 3 (yesterdays 8-3 loss in game 1 of the double-dosage)
- The Brewers have been shutout twice in 5 games, in the previous25 games this season they had scored at least 1 run in every game
- Mark Kotsay has the best batting average of anyone on the team over the past 7 games (.286) That tells me all I need to know.
- The team has scored 11 runs in the past 7 games, Fielder and Braun have 6 of them
- As a team they have 45 strikeouts and 12 walks since Thursday of last week
The only word that accurately describes this team right now is “stale”. Like a Wheat Thin you find under your couch 6 months after the last time you bought Wheat Thins. For the love of all things sacred, Mark Kotsay has been our best offensive weapon over the past week. Do you know how hard it is for me to acknowledge that? I had to check 3 different websites to make sure I was not seeing things. McGehee is batting .136 and since Corey Hart has been back he only has 2 hits in 17 AB’s. This team needs a shake-up. The problem is, I don’t know what that could be.
Tonight will bring a merciful end to this Braves series. Marcum has been without question the best pitcher on the roster this season. If the team can score more than 3 runs, I firmly believe they can end the 5 game skid tonight. Then again, I also firmly believed that they would never make a movie about the Green Lantern…jokes on me.
Tomorrow could start a new nightmare however, as the Crew head into St. Louis to take on the division leading Cardinals for the weekend. This series will do one of two things: 1) it will jump start this team and get them back on track, or 2) dig us a hole that we will not be able to climb out of without some sort of 1980 U.S Hockey Team type miracle. I can not believe that this weekend might already be the turning point in this season. They need to win tonight and try to sneak 2 out of 3 from the Cards, otherwise we might see Prince on the trading block before too much longer.
Brandon Boggs was optioned down to Triple-A yesterday. At this point, most of you know that I think Boggs is an amazing talent that we can not afford to lose. However, management thinks that he is expendable. We all saw what happened when we lost Luis Cruz after Spring Training. Why would management take the risk of allowing another terrific young talent walk away from the organization? Are Kotsay and Counsell that important to this team? I do not think so.
My new friend Shawn Anderson, writes for a blog called The Hall of Very Good. Like me Shawn is a mustache lover and he also loves JAMF’s. Do me a favor and check out his site. Especially if you are a fan of the lip cardigan.
Well, that is all I can stomach for right now. Things are ugly all over, so I have to limit myself in these dark times. Having said that, I will try to muster all of my positive vibes to send to the team tonight. I recommend that you all do the same.
Almost forgot, Happy Cinco De Mayo to all of my American friends. Turns out this holiday is alot like St. Patrick’s Day. It is way more popular in the U.S. then it is in it’s originating country. Happy 4th of July Mexico!!!