MILWAUKEE, WI - SEPTEMBER 10: Carlos Gomez #27, Ryan Braun #8 and Norichika Aoki #7 of the Milwaukee Brewers celebrate in the outfield after the 4-1 win over the Atlanta Braves during the game at Miller Park on September 10, 2012 in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. (Photo by Mike McGinnis/Getty Images)
Some things to read while standing by the mailbox.
The Brewer hot streak continues and they're now winners of 15 of their last 17 home games after riding a big inning to a 4-1 win over the Braves last night. We've got the recap, if you missed it.
The Brewers only had four hits yesterday but Norichika Aoki had two of them, including the seventh inning double that drove in the go-ahead run and earned him a place among Head & Shoulders' Mane Men. Jack Moore of Disciples of Uecker notes, however, that you still can't buy an Aoki t-shirt jersey in the Brewers' online store.
Meanwhile, the Brewers allowed one run while giving up ten hits in the game, easily the most hits they've allowed in a one run game this season.
Last night's Brewer win and Cardinals loss moved Milwaukee within five games of the NL's final wild card spot. Grant Brisbee of Baseball Nation has a look at the Brewers as one of the teams that had been written off for dead but have continued to compete. Larry Granillo of Baseball Prospectus, however, notes that it's still very unlikely they'll be able to finish this off.
With that said, even if the Brewers accomplish nothing else this year they'll have gotten one of the most cynical Brewer fans I know to say this:
I think I'm starting to see why Doug Melvin thinks the Crew could contend next year.— Rubie Q (@Rubie_Q) September 11, 2012
Other notes from the field:
- Chipper Jones received a standing ovation before his first at bat in his final series at Miller Park, and sent a shout out to Tyler Thornburg afterwards.
- We've got a look at the game's turning points and video of Ron Roenicke's postgame press conference.
- The Polish won the sausage race.
The series continues tonight at Miller Park when Marco Estrada takes on Tim Hudson at 7:10. Teddy Cahill has the MLB.com preview.
Braun's pair of walks last night raised his OBP to .388 and his NL-best OPS to .987. Jeff Passan of Yahoo, who short months ago was going out of his way to slime Braun for an alleged positive test, now makes the case that the Brewer outfielder could repeat as NL MVP.
The Brewers won't see Ben Sheets on the field this week, but he is traveling with the Braves and pitched a simulated game in the bullpen yesterday. He told Adam McCalvy he has no regrets about the end of his Brewer tenure.
It appears likely the Brewers are going to fall short of the final wild card spot, and if they do we're going to have plenty of games to look back at and consider what could have been. Jaymes Langrehr remembers, for example, the walkoff losses in Philadelphia.
I mentioned yesterday that the Brewers had claimed pitcher Miguel De Los Santos off waivers from the Rangers, and it turns out a rule technicality means the claim only cost them a dollar. (h/t @Mass_Haas) At any rate, MDLS is not expected to be added to the major league roster this September.
In the minors:
- Wisconsin opens the Midwest League championship series at home tomorrow, and Fort Wayne beat Lake County 13-6 last night to clinch the other spot. The Tin Caps are managed by longtime Brewer shortstop Jose Valentin.
- The Timber Rattlers are encouraging fans to wear white to their game tomorrow night.
- Adam DeCock of MLB.com has a picture of Wisconsin players Yadiel Rivera, Greg Hopkins, Carlos George and Santo Manzanillo at last night's Brewer game. The Official Site has video from interviews with Hopkins, Rivera and George.
- Jeff Moore of The Hardball Times has a post decrying the lack of high profile pitchers in the Arizona Fall League, and lists Johnny Hellweg as the top pitching prospect on the Phoenix Desert Dogs.
If you're attending tonight or tomorrow's game (and I am), then you might be interested in trying this: The Chef's Table concession stand on the loge level is serving chicken and waffles for the Braves series.
If you'd like more Brewer coverage today but you're sick of reading, I'll be making my usual rounds today:
- I'll be making my weekly appearance on The Watercooler with Jimmie Kaska on Sports Radio 1400 in Eau Claire at 5:15.
- From there, I'll jump directly over to The Sports Den with Downtown Ollie Burrows on SportsFan 100.5 in Wausau at 5:30.
Finally, congratulations are due out to -JP-, yesterday's winner in our SB Nation Pick 6 contest. Here's the full leaderboard:
Tonight's action starts at 6:05, so there's still time to get your picks in for today.
Today in former Brewers: When Aramis Ramirez was hit by a pitch Sunday he joined Jason Kendall, Fernando Vina and current teammate Rickie Weeks on Plunk Everyone's list of players who have been hit 100 times in the same division.
And in baseball economics: Sunday afternoon games during football season typically don't draw many TV viewers, but the Astros set a new record low when their Sunday afternoon game was witnessed by an estimated 1,092 fans.
Now, if you'll excuse me, I need another nap.