LOS ANGELES, CA - MAY 30: Norichika Aoki #7 of the Milwaukee Brewers celebrates with teammates after the game with the Los Angeles Dodgers on May 30, 2012 at Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles, California. The Brewers won 6-3. (Photo by Stephen Dunn/Getty Images)
Some things to read while your books tip over.
The Brewers kept us up late last night but rewarded us for the effort, beating the Dodgers 6-3 to tie their longest winning streak of the season at three games. We've got the recap here, if you didn't stay up until 1 am to read it last night.
Yovani Gallardo had a solid outing through six innings last night but it was tarnished by Ron Roenicke's decision to leave him in to allow the first three batters to reach in the seventh. J.P. Breen of Disciples of Uecker notes that Gallardo is tied for the major league lead with nine quality starts this season. He's also pitched six straight.
Carlos Gomez had a big night last night, tying a career high with four hits and driving in the Brewers' first two runs. Ryan Kartje of FS Wisconsin says Gomez might finally be getting back to his pre-injury form.
Martin Maldonado also had a good night last night, going 1-for-3 and driving in his first major league run with a safety squeeze in the sixth inning, the Brewers' sixth successful squeeze in 2012. @SessileFielder wants to assign Maldonado a TMNT-themed nickname.
Last night's win brought the Brewers back within six games of .500 at 22-28, still leaving them a lot of work to do to get back into contention. Mark Attanasio, however, said "we still think we can win."
Other notes from the field:
- This is the first time the Dodgers have lost three straight games in 2012. A Brewer sweep tonight would be their first ever, home or away, against Los Angeles.
- Dodger outfielder Matt Kemp left last night's game in the first inning after re-aggravating his hamstring injury and expects to go back on the DL. He was just activated on Tuesday.
- Dodgers manager Don Mattingly missed last night's game after injuring his calf in the weight room.
- John Axford worked around a walk to pitch a scoreless ninth last night for his tenth save. He's appeared in four straight games, starting with Sunday's "just to get some work in" appearance against the Diamondbacks.
- Norichika Aoki had two hits last night, extending the Brewers' longest active streak to six games.
- Martin Maldonado was hit by a pitch last night, and he's now the 250th Brewer to be hit by at least one. Plunk Everyone has more on the accomplishment.
- Aramis Ramirez grounded into a double play last night, his sixth of the season, and only a bad defensive play saved him from also getting his seventh. Last night's Stat of the Night looked at the most notable Brewers to hit more double plays than home runs.
- We've also got highlights from last night's turning points and a transcript of Ron Roenicke's postgame comments.
The Brewers wrap up their series in Los Angeles with a 9:10 start tonight, and Tyler Emerick has the MLB.com preview. Carson Cistulli of FanGraphs gave tonight's Zack Greinke/Chad Billingsley matchup a six out of ten on his NERD scale. The game will be on MLB Network, for those of you living outside the Brewers and Dodgers' blackout regions and hoping to see it.
Hopefully the Brewers got some sleep last night, because they're going to have a long travel night tonight. The team has to return to Milwaukee following tonight's game (a ridiculous west coast getaway night contest) to host the Pirates at Miller Park tomorrow.
Rickie Weeks was on base three times last night, doubling and drawing two walks. He's still only hitting .156/.293/.295, though, and nullacct has a look at hitters that have maintained a batting average that low for a full season.
Ryan Braun went 0-for-3 last night with two walks (one intentional), and his OPS remains above 1.000 on the season. He also circled the bases in 23.67 seconds following his home run on Tuesday. MLB Trade Rumors notes that he's one of just five players in baseball under contract through 2020.
Looking back a day, there's still a fair amount of chatter out there about Michael Fiers' solid debut outing Tuesday night. J.P. Breen of FanGraphs has a look at his fastball, and why he was able to be successful while throwing the sub-90 mph pitch over 70% of the time. Fiers was also the Prospect of the Day at Minor League Ball. Adam McCalvy talked to Fiers about his newfound fame.
Meanwhile, Jonathan Lucroy got some bad news yesterday: His broken hand is going to require surgery to insert a pin, and he's now expected to be out six weeks (the long end of his original 4-6 week prognosis). Lucroy says he's planning on being around to do whatever he can to help the team's healthy catchers and pitchers.
In further proof that people will always find a new low, Lucroy said his wife has been receiving hate mail after her dropped suitcase led to this injury. TheJay's tweet sums up that situation pretty nicely:
Finding a ballplayer's wife's contact info is like becoming invisible, you can't have a good reason for it.— Theron Schultz (@TheronJay) May 30, 2012
At any rate, Jon Morosi of Fox Sports says Lucroy's injury is a further indication that the Brewers need to sell before the trade deadline.
In the minors:
- The affiliates went 2-2 last night, and Huntsville had 12 hits in their 6-4 win over Tennessee to move within a game and a half of first place in the Southern League North division. Minor League Notes are off today, but Disciples of Uecker has more on last night's games.
- Wisconsin infielder Greg Hopkins was an honorable mention for MLB Depth Charts' Under the Radar NL Minor League Hitting Performance of the Week for May 23-29. Hopkins had 13 hits and three home runs in that span.
- Nashville broadcaster Jeff Hem has an interview with Sounds pitcher Brian Baker.
- Mass Haas of Brewerfan.net has a look at the players the Brewers drafted but did not sign between 2003 and 2005. The 2005 class in particular has several players that really could have helped this team.
When the Brewers return to Miller Park tomorrow night they'll have a new ballpark feature for you to check out: John Steinmiller has a photo of the team's new "logo wall."
If you'd like more Brewer coverage today but you're sick of reading, I made an appearance yesterday on the Bucs Dugout Podcast to help preview this weekend's Brewers/Pirates series.
Finally, congratulations are due out this morning to Hebel, yesterday's winner in our SB Nation Pick 6 contest. Here's the full leaderboard:
|8||Badger Boy in Vail||60.5|
Tonight's abbreviated major league schedule doesn't start until after 6, so you've still got plenty of time to make your picks for today.
Cubs: Signed pitcher Shane Lindsay to a minor league deal and released pitcher Nate Robertson.
Diamondbacks: Placed outfielder Jason Kubel on paternity leave.
Mets: Placed shortstop Ronny Cedeno on the DL with a calf strain.
Rockies: Are expected to place shortstop Troy Tulowitzki on the DL with a groin strain and designated pitcher Jamie Moyer for assignment.
Tigers: Placed pitcher Doug Fister on the DL with a strained left side.
The Reds, Cardinals and Astros all lost last night, moving the Brewers into a tie for fourth place in the division and back to within six games of first place. You know that and more if you've read this morning's edition of Around the NL Central.
In former Brewers: It seems increasingly likely that Rule 5 pick Lucas Luetge is going to stick with the Mariners. He's pitched 11.1 scoreless innings to open the 2012 season, and has held opposing lefties to a .083/.290/.083 line.
Retractable roof ballparks are great, but it turns out they can't always protect the Marlins from Miami's unpredictable weather. A surprise rainstorm last night flooded the dugouts and soaked the press box and luxury suites before the grounds crew was able to close the roof at Marlins Park yesterday. It apparently takes 23 minutes to close the roof.
Another day, another story about the unprofessional actions of a tenured major league umpire. Apparently home plate umpire Laz Diaz would not allow Yankees catcher Russell Martin to throw new baseballs back to his pitchers following foul balls last night, telling Martin he had to "earn the privilege" to do so. If that's true Diaz should "earn the privilege" to never officiate a professional game again.
This morning's edition of Today In Brewer History marks the sixth anniversary of an ugly loss to the Pirates in Pittsburgh where infielder Jose Castillo hit his sixth home run in five games. Chris Jaffe of The Hardball Times notes that it's also the anniversary of a brawl between the Brewers and Indians in 1996 that started when Albert Belle broke Fernando Vina's nose with a forearm while trying to break up a double play.
Now, if you'll excuse me, I'm late for my race.