Eventful weekend; here’s some recaps!
Ryan Rowland-Smith showed for the first three innings why he’s been a moderately intriguing pitcher. In the fourth, he showed why he isn’t an above average pitcher in the Major Leagues – the punishment for missing with an 88 MPH fastball is simply too much. That says a load about why the Brewers pitching staff has been struggling this year as well, but this time Milwaukee was on the winning end as Jonathan Lucroy and Carlos Gomez hit back to back home runs to go up 4-3. The rest of the game was a mere formality; the Brewers pen continued to perform well while the Brewers touched up the Mariners’ pen, scoring another run off Rowland-Smith and tacking three more on against Garrett Olson and Chad Cordero. Gomez and Lucroy were clearly the offensive stars of the game. On the mound, Dave Bush wasn’t terribly impressive but did enough to keep the Brewers ahead, while Kameron Loe, Carlos Villanueva, and Trevor Hoffman threw scoreless innings for Milwaukee.
I was at this game – I’ll throw up some pictures on the Facebook page within the next couple of days. As far as the game goes, it wasn’t terribly exciting. Randy Wolf worked extremely slowly and poorly, and Doug Fister wasn’t much better. There was some decent power on display – Milton Bradley, Jose Lopez, and Prince Fielder all hit monster home runs. Unfortunately, one of the most ridiculously poor catching plays on Corey Hart’s double wasn’t enough to put the Brewers over the top. Brian Sweeney and his changeup shut the Brewers down in the last four innings and George Kottaras’s fly ball with two outs in the bottom of the ninth against Brandon League just didn’t have enough to go for the game tying home run.
The Mariners are 31-44 because they can’t hit, plain and simply. They’ve scored 111 fewer runs than the Brewers after this season, and they were starting Josh Wilson and Mike Sweeney at first base. That’s simply not a winning combination. Chris Narveson isn’t a great pitcher – he’s probably average at best. But he managed to induce 10 swinging strikes out of this Mariners lineup, and 7 strikeouts and a couple of clutch double plays to keep the Mariners off the board. Weeks continued to slug, with his 13th home run of the season, and Hart and Fielder combined to bring in the second and third runs. John Axford picked up another save by striking out the side in the 9th.