Best and Worst: Brewers vs. Rockies
So a sweep isn’t the greatest way to begin a season, but the Brewers showed some life as the series went on, and as always, there are positives and negatives to be taken away from this humble beginning.
1. Adam Lind has a 1.792 OPS through three games, with six hits, one home run and three walks against just one strikeout. He was also the centerpiece of a strong double play when he threw out DJ LeMahieu who tried to steal a run on a hot shot to first.
LindMania, Via ESPN
It’s insanely early, but it’s refreshing for Brewers fans who are not accustomed to seeing this sort of production from first base, where as you can see, Lind leads the team in every listed offensive category. In fact, via FanGraphs, Lind is second only to demi-god Adrian Gonzalez in WAR to start the season.
2. Wily Peralta stopped the streak of poor starts in the third game of the season, when he went seven innings on 88 pitches and allowed just two earned runs. Wily could have had a shot at eight innings, but the team was in desperate need of offense, and pinch-hit for the big righty.
3. Yovani Gallardo went four innings and gave up four ER in his Opening Day start with the Rangers. Forgive the schadenfreude, I like Yo, and this is inarguably not a part of the Brewers’ series, but it’s been difficult to find silver linings for the first three games of the season. I know I’m reaching here.
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4. The Brewers aren’t likely to face too many lineups as potent as the Rockies is (when healthy). Carlos Gonzalez, Troy Tulowitzki, and Justin Morneau feels like an unfair lineup, with the addition of Corey Dickerson and the hot-handed Nolan Arenado and even LeMahieu and Nick Hundley, the team was an offensive juggernaut for 28 innings.
1. The discrepancy between The Crew’s performance and the Rockies was atrocious. The Brewers team OPS is .568 (lower than Lind’s batting average (!)) while the Rockies OPS is .921.
2. The Brewers were swept to open the season for the first time since 2011, though that was of course the last year the Crew won the division, so there’s that.
3. The Crew got dominated by Kyle Kendrick, who is in no way an Opening Day caliber starter nor a guy who came into the season with an ERA under 4.40. All players have good games sometimes, (looking at you Philip Humber), but no one expects it to be against their favorite, usually offensively gifted team.
4. Four errors, second worst in the league to the Rangers, who somehow managed to double their game total with errors. One error was on Scooter Gennett, who could very well be mediocre with the bat this season now that he’s facing lefties, and must provide value defensively, where he is a huge step up from Rickie Weeks, just by being league average, or a tick above.
5. I’d like to keep the positives and negatives equal, but it was discouraging to see Ryan Braun get injured immediately to start the season. It doesn’t appear to be serious, but he’s had an awful lot of injury problems since his suspension.
The sky isn’t falling, and this is likely to seem overly pessimistic, but that’s only because it’s the first of the year. The purpose of an exercise like this is to point out faults in a small sample size, not pretend that it will be indicative of the Brewers’ whole season. So fret not, Brewers fans, because series like these don’t come around just too often.
Up next are the Pirates, and Pete’s series preview is available here.