Today's Matchup: Brewers (Estrada) vs Phillies (Lee)

May 7, 2012: Milwaukee, WI, USA; Milwaukee Brewers pitcher Marco Estrada (41) during the game against the Cincinnati Reds at Miller Park. The Reds defeated the Brewers 6-1. Mandatory Credit: Jeff Hanisch-US PRESSWIRE

Well, at least the Brewers are back home.

They'll open a seven game homestand tonight with Marco Estrada (4.36 ERA, 4.09 FIP) on the mound. Estrada is eight innings away from matching his major league career high of 92.2, but it shouldn't be a major concern as he's pitched over 100 innings in the minors on three different occasions (including 136 in 2009). He had a short outing against the Astros on Saturday, allowing four runs on seven hits over four innings.

Estrada's control as a Brewer has really been very good for most of his career. He's made 22 starts as a Brewer and never walked more than three batters. That's tied for the sixth longest streak in the Miller Park era:

Pitcher Season(s) Games IP
Dave Bush 2006-07 63 390.2
Ben Sheets 2005-07 52 343.2
Dave Bush 2008-09 36 227.2
Zack Greinke 2011 26 160.2
Ben Sheets 2002-03 25 174
Marco Estrada and two others 22

One of Estrada's worst starts came against the Phillies on July 25, when he allowed five runs on eight hits over four innings with three walks and four strikeouts. No current Phillies have faced him more than five times, but Ryan Howard is 1-for-4 against him with a walk and a home run.

He'll face Clifton Phifer "Cliff" Lee (3.85 ERA, 3.52 FIP), who looks very good for a pitcher having his worst FIP season since 2007. He's been struggling with the long ball lately, though, allowing eight home runs in his last four starts. One of them came against the Cardinals on Saturday, when he allowed four runs on ten hits over seven innings.

If you're hanging around waiting for Cliff Lee to walk you, it probably won't happen. He's allowed one walk or less in each of his last seven outings and three or less in each of his last 43, a streak stretching all the way back to May of 2011. The latter is only the third longest such streak of his career.

The Brewers beat Lee and the Phillies on July 24 when they tagged him for six runs on 12 hits (including four home runs) over seven innings. Four current Brewers have faced him ten times or more:

Carlos Gomez 23 .273 .304 .545 .850
Aramis Ramirez 14 .308 .357 .846 1.203
Ryan Braun 13 .462 .462 .692 1.154
Corey Hart 10 .444 .500 .556 1.056


Norichika Aoki RF
Rickie Weeks 2B
Ryan Braun LF
Aramis Ramirez 3B
Corey Hart 1B
Jonathan Lucroy C
Carlos Gomez CF
Jean Segura SS
Marco Estrada P

In the bullpen:

John Axford pitched .2 innings (eight pitches) yesterday and also pitched on Tuesday.
Manny Parra retired one batter (two pitches) yesterday and also pitched on Tuesday.
Francisco Rodriguez pitched one inning (19 pitches) yesterday.
Jim Henderson pitched .1 innings (11 pitches) yesterday.
Jose Veras pitched 1.2 innings (27 pitches) Tuesday.
Livan Hernandez and Mike McClendon last pitched on Monday.
Kameron Loe last pitched on Sunday.

It should be cool and comfortable at Miller Park tonight with a game time temperature around 72 dropping as the night goes along. The roof will likely be open.

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