Dispatch from the Great White North:
Well there’s no question that winter is upon us now, and as I watch the snowy tomb enclose upon my apartment building I begin to reflect on the year that was.
We all know that the 2012 season was less than fulfilling to most (probably all ) Milwaukee Brewers fans. The off-season has likely been even more unsatisfying, or useful in assuaging the concerns of most fans.
So allow us at Reviewing the Brew to be the hot chocolate to the cold north wind that is missing the playoffs. We present you with some of the biggest bright spots in a slightly down season.
We begin with the best stand-alone offensive performances of the season.
Lucroy may not be a prototypical power hitter, but he showed some nice skills not once – but twice – by driving in seven runs in a single game. (Scott Rovak-USA TODAY Sports)
Many fans (the most obvious being yours truly) were predicting that 2012 would be Jonathan Lucroy’s coming out party as one of the National League’s more productive catchers. A suitcase had other plans. But despite the fact that Lucroy was sidelined for all of June and most of July, Lucroy still had an historic performance in him.
There were two games in 2012 that saw Jonathan Lucroy drive in seven runs in a single game. He’s he first Milwaukee Brewer to accomplish such a feat, and only the second catcher in Major League History to do it. The first time it happened was on May 20th, in a 16-4 run-fest the Crew dropped on the Minnesota Twins at Miller Park. Lucroy hit two homers, scored three runs and went 3-5 on the day.
Game number two of Lucroy’s hit parade came during an unfortunate 11-12 loss to the Chicago Cubs in Wrigley Field. Though the Friendly Confines were not so nice to the Brewers, Lucroy found it quite hospitable. Again the catcher went 3-5, scoring only one run on a home run – his only extra base hit during his historic performance. Whether or not Lucroy can build upon these performances remains to be seen – but there’s no doubt that for two days this season we saw how powerful the young catcher could be.
First Runner-up: Ryan Braun
Well, it gets awfully hard to leave Ryan Braun off any list involving the words
See that building in the background? Yeah, Ryan Braun hit that. (Christopher Hanewinckel-USA TODAY Sports)
“Brewers” and “Best”, and the trend continues here with a second-place finish.
Though he did not earn the top spot, Ryan Braun had himself a fantastic day in the 2012 season during a West Coast road swing. On April 30th, the San Diego Padres hosted the Milwaukee Brewers and lost 8-3. If you’re up on your San Diego Padres history, that’s nothing new.
What was new was the fact that they lost in part because of the three home runs hit by Ryan Braun. If you’ve ever seen Petco Park, you know it’s a good country mile from home plate to the outfield walls – so great a feat is hitting multiple home runs there that Ryan Braun is the first and only player to hit three of them in a single game in the eight year history of the stadium.
By the way, he also hit a triple that day and tied his career-best RBI total with six. Not a bad way to get a second place finish.
Come back later to see more of the Milwaukee Brewers Best of 2012. Unless the Mayans kill us all, of course – in which case, thanks for making your last earthly baseball blog Reviewing the Brew.