Could I possibly say enough about the job Chris Capuano did tonight for the Brewers? The four strikeout, three hit, one walk performance stands on its own, but the fact that he was able to do it after a 50 minute rain delay and under a 60-70 pitch count limit was impressive and, dare I say, gritty. Capuano really saved the bullpen today, and the impact of this start will last beyond this game.
As far as his stuff goes, it’s difficult to take too much out of one start, but his fastball averaged 88, which is faster than he ever was as a starter. He also drew eight swinging strike in his 65 pitches, which is excellent. Given his success tonight, I certainly wouldn’t mind seeing Capuano get another chance in the rotation, if the circumstances allow it, although he could also be valuable as a reliever in late inning situations as well – either way, expect Cappy to get a little more use than the meager 10 innings he’d seen prior to tonight.
Rickie Weeks continues to rake, hitting his 18th home run tonight. Weeks led all Brewers in WAR with 2.9 entering the game. He’s still not the greatest defender, but when you can hit like this and even play a semi-competent second base, you’re a legitimate star, and that’s what Weeks is turning himself into this season.
John Axford made us sweat a little bit at the end of the game, but his pitching against Ryan Doumit and Ryan Church, with two on and nobody out to boot, was tremendous. He located incredibly well and even though he doesn’t have a particular out pitch against lefties, he managed to record two key strikeouts to get to Ronnie Cedeno to end the game. I keep expecting him to crack – and unfortunately, he will at some point – but the ride so far has been fantastic.
Overall, this was a game that easily could’ve gone wrong for the Brewers at a number of points, but they managed to pull out a win in unfavorable conditions with a spot starter, and that has to feel good.