Just what we needed, a good ol’ trashing of some team’s pitching staff. After dropping the series to the Twins, today’s potential sweep of the Brew Crew turned into anything but that. Jonathan Lucroy had a huge day at the plate, hitting two home runs (one being a grand slam) and contributing to the trashing with 7 RBIs. Yet again, Zack Greinke showed us another quality which gave him his 5th win of the season. This win, while a small victory, was one that had to happen. Nobody thought we’d lose a series to the Twins in Milwaukee. We still sit well below .500 and losing series like these are crucial because now the schedule becomes tougher with us facing the top teams of the NL West, while mainly on the road too. Sure, we’ll take this game as it is, but things won’t always be there for the taking. That said, let’s look at today’s game.
The game oddly enough started in Minnesota’s favor. Ben Revere doubled early followed by a Josh Willingham single that scored him. Greinke didn’t seem to be phased by this as for the next 5.2 innings he would pitch as he would be lights out. The Brewers would retaliate, and retaliate hard against Twins’ Jason Marquis. Corey Hart hit a solo home run in the bottom of the 1st, soon followed by a Jonathan Lucroy solo shot with two outs. After one, it’s 2-1 Brewers, a lead that they would never lose.
Jason Marquis wouldn’t even make it out of the second inning as the Brew Crew’s frustrations were apparent. The build up of losing so many games back to back, and games we should have won, was coming out. Travis Ishikawa would start off the bottom of the second as he singled. Zack Greinke would single with two out to advance Ishikawa on the bases. Corey Hart hit an infield single, scoring Ishikawa. The nightmare was just beginning for Marquis. He would then walk Nyjer Morgan which loaded the bases. Ryan Braun hit a clutch double scoring Greinke and Hart and advancing Morgan to third. At this point, it’s 5-1 Brewers and they’re doing this all with two outs. Lucroy also singles, keeping the inning going and scores Morgan and Braun. Taylor Green would be hit by a pitch after Lucroy’s at bat. At this point, the Brewers had batted around as Travis Ishikawa is back up at the plate. Ishikawa singles, scoring Lucroy and advancing Green. Jason Marquis is bruised, battered, beaten, anything else you can throw in there at this point and is replaced by Anthony Swarzak, who later will deal with the same issues as Marquis, but for now gets the inning to finally end for the Twins by getting Cesar Izturis out (surprise there, sarcasm yet again). After two, it’s 8-1 Brew Crew.
The next few innings would show solid work from Zack Greinke. In the 3rd and 4th, Greinke would pitch 1-2-3 innings. In the third, Greinke got Anthony Swarzak to ground out, Denard Span to fly out and Ben Revere to strike out. The top of the 4th, Joe Mauer singled, but that was later nullfied as Justin Morneau hit into a double play, after Josh Willingham flew out. The bottom of the 4th showed even more Brewers’ production. Morgan singled to left followed by Braun hitting his second double of the day. That double would score Morgan. Lucroy flies out which in turn moves Braun to third. Taylor Green has a productive out as he flies out but is able to score Braun. Cesar Izturis yet again would end the inning. After four, it’s 10-1 Brewers.
Alex Burnett would replace Anthony Swarzak heading into the bottom of the 5th. With a nine run lead, the Brewers could hopefully rest easy. Things would only go from really bad to super bad for the Twins. Burnett would get two outs while allowing Greinke a hit, but would walk Morgan with nobody else but Braun up next. Braun hit a single, scoring Greinke and moving Morgan to second. Lucroy would fly out to end the inning. After five, it’s 11-1 Brewers.
The top of the 7th saw changes everywhere. Corey Hart was now at first, Ishikawa was in right and Greinke would soon be replaced. Trevor Plouffe would single and eventually reach third base as Edwin Maysonet had a throwing error. Denard Span would be walked and this point, Greinke is at 111 pitches. Ron Roenicke decides to take him out and put in the newly called up Juan Perez. Carlos Gomez would go to center and Nyjer Morgan to right. Perez ends the inning by getting Ben Revere to strike out again. The bottom of the 7th would not be any prettier for the Twins. Jeff Gray would replace Alex Burnett on the mound and soon pitch an inning to forget. Carlos Gomez starts off the inning by getting a single, welcome back Carlos. Corey Hart follows his lead and also gets a single. Nyjer Morgan is hit by a pitch (now I’m not sure if it’s intentional as Taylor Green was already plunked) which loads the bases for Norichika Aoki, who replaced Braun in left. Aoki hits an infield single which not only scores Gomez, but keeps the bases loaded. Now, it’s time for the red hot Jonathan Lucroy. Already this season, Lucroy was batting well over .500 with runners in scoring position and definitely assured that today. Lucroy hits a big grand slam to right which sees the end of Jeff Gray’s appearance. Brian Duensing would come in and start by hitting Taylor Green (now this is just ridiculous). Juan Perez strikes out and NO OTHER THAN CESAR IZTURIS ENDS THE INNING WITH A DOUBLE PLAY…after seven it’s 16-1 Brewers.
Roenicke makes a few more defensive changes in the top of the 8th. George Kottaras takes over at first and Aoki is in left. Joe Mauer starts off the 8th by hitting a double and later scores when Brian Dozier hits a single. Tim Dillard replaces Juan Perez on the mound and gets Trevor Plouffe to hit into a double play, ending the 8th. In the bottom of the 8th, the Twins leave back up catcher Drew Butera in the game and actually have him pitch to the Brewers. He would get Edwin Maysonent to ground out, Carlos Gomez to strike out, walk George Kottaras and get Nyjer Morgan to ground out. After eight, it’s 16-2 Brewers.
Tim Dillard would get ejected in the top of the 9th so Kameron Loe takes over. Loe gets two easy outs, but also surrenders a single to Alex Casilla. Ben Revere would walk and Joe Mauer would reach on an infield single, loading the bases. Darin Mastroianni hits what SHOULD BE AN OUT TO CESAR IZTURIS, but reaches on an error which scores Casilla. Drew Butera would walk, bringing Revere home. After this though, Brian Dozier fouls out to end to mercifully end the game for the Twins. Brewers win 16-4.
All in all, a win’s a win and we’ll take it. Kameron Loe got into a bit of trouble in the 9th, but with such a huge lead, the pressure was barely there. Offensively, wow, what a day. It’s a game we needed badly. In a series that I believe we should’ve won, we gave up two to the Twins. Zack Greinke looked great today and really only supports his case to be a top NL pitcher this year. This win moves the Brew Crew to 17-24 and drops the Twins to 14-27. Our next series will be against the Giants in Milwaukee beginning tomorrow. It will feature Randy Wolf (2-4, 6.38 ERA) against Madison Bumgarner (5-3, 3.10 ERA).
WP: Z. Greinke (5-1, 2.70 ERA): 6.2 IP, 5 H, 1 ER, 2 BB’s, 6 K’s
LP: J. Marquis (2-4, 8.47 ERA): 1.2 IP, 8 H, 8 ER, 1 BB
Doubles: B. Revere (4), J.Mauer (11), Braun 2 (8)
Home Runs: C. Hart (9), J. Lucroy 2 (4)
RBIs: J. Willingham (25), B. Dozier (8), D. Butera (1), C. Hart 2 (20), J. Lucroy 7 (27), R. Braun 4 (28), T. Ishikawa (13), T. Green (3), N. Aoki (5)
Errors: T. Green (1), E. Maysonet (2), C. Izturis (2)
Until next time, go Brew Crew!