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Milwaukee Brewers: Maybe next year is the year

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The title is a little misleading; it’s not what you think. It has to do with a personal statistic.

The last time a player accomplished this for the Milwaukee Brewers, Ronald Reagan was in the middle of his second term as President of the United States. On the day that this player notched this milestone, Huey Lewis and the News had the number one pop hit with ‘Stuck with You.’

Can you guess what the accomplishment is?

The answer: a 20-win season by a pitcher.

Choose the correct answer:

  1. Mike Caldwell
  2. Teddy Higuera
  3. Don Sutton
  4. Pete Vuckovich

The correct answer is: Teodoro Valenzuela Higuera.

The 28-year-old barrel-chested Mexican had one of the finest seasons for a hurler in Brewers history. Higuera earned a spot on the All-Star team and finished second to Roger Clemens in the Cy Young voting. The southpaw fashioned a 20-11 record, with an ERA of 2.79 and a WHIP of 1.208. He also placed 15th in the American League (yes, the Crew was in the AL back then) Most Valuable Player balloting.

Next year will be the 30th anniversary of that feat, but with all the young talented chuckers coming up in the next couple years, that target might be reached before too long.

More from Reviewing the Brew

This season, the Brewers are finishing the season with six rookies in the starting rotation.

Taylor Jungmann has nine wins in 20 starts and will garner Rookie of the Year points for his performance. Tyler Cravy is still looking for his first big league victory but has shown potential in his seven starts.

Twenty-two-year-old righty Zach Davies has performed well in five starts and looks like a solid contender for a spot in the 2016 rotation. Hard-throwing Ariel Pena will most likely make his mark as a late-inning reliever, needing to harness his control problems.

Tyler Wagner has made a pair of starts and has a solid future.

Perhaps the most intriguing of the bunch is 22-year-old Jorge Lopez. The Brewers minor league Pitcher of the Year performed well in his major league debut, striking out seven while allowing eight hits, two walks, and three earned runs in five innings to earn his first big league victory.

He was able to spot a mid-90s fastball and pitched very well in his debut in San Diego. He has work to do, but shines brightly for the future.

In addition, the Brewers organization features other top pitchers, such as Hiram Burgos, Adrian Houser, Johnny Hellweg, Wei-Chung Wang, Jorge Ortega (watch this guy), Brandon Woodruff, Cy Sneed, Zach Hirsch, Kodi Medeiros, Devin Williams, and Cody Ponce.

I might have missed one or two, but the bottom line is that the Brewers organizational cupboard is chock-full of top-grade talent.

Yes, this year was very frustrating for us Brew Crew fans, but the future’s so bright, we almost have to wear shades. (Thanks Corey Hart…no, the other one.)

Teddy Higuera might soon lose his spot as the trivia answer: who was the last Brewers 20-game winner.

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