The Brewers ran out perhaps their worst lineup of the season, but still beat the Los Angeles Dodgers.
Win: Wily Peralta (2-1)
Loss: Matt Guerrier (1-1)
Save: Jim Henderson (6)
HR: Gomez (3), Maldonado (1), Ethier (3)
MVP: Carlos Gomez (.473 WPA)
LVP: Wily Peralta (-.179)
Fangraphs Win Expectancy Graph
The Brewers were without Jean Segura in the starting lineup today thanks to a broken fingernail. Aramis Ramirez and Corey Hart are still hurt. Rickie Weeks has been dreadful. Jonathan Lucroy wasn't in the lineup. Yuniesky Betancourt hit cleanup. Here was the Brewers official starting lineup for today's game:
1. Norichika Aoki (L) RF
2. Carlos Gomez (R) CF
3. Ryan Braun (R) LF
4. Yuniesky Betancourt (R) 3B
5. Rickie Weeks (R) 2B
6. Martin Maldonado (R) C
7. Blake Lalli (L) 1B
8. Alex Gonzalez (R) SS
9. Wily Peralta (R) P
Is that the worst lineup since the dog days of the 1990s? That's a terrible lineup! That rivals teams like the Marlins and Astros and Twins! Yuniesky Betancourt hit cleanup!
So go figure they scored six runs and won the game. That's the Brewers for you I guess. They haven't looked particularly good, but they somehow won nine straight and sit at 12-10 on the year. It's weird. Really weird. But a nice kind of weird.
Today, they rode a nice start from rookie Wily Peralta and some timely hitting. Peralta pitched six innings while giving up three runs on six hits and a walk. The strikeouts weren't there for him--he sat just two batters down on strikes. That's still troubling to me. I'll take this pitching line every time he starts, but I'm not confident that will continue unless he finds those Ks again.
Milwaukee helped him out by striking first blood in the third inning. After a one-out Norichika Aoki walk and Carlos Gomez single, Ryan Braun reached base on a fielder's choice that resulted in no outs and the bases loaded. That was all Yuniesky Betancourt--who was hitting clean-up--needed as he singled in the first run of the game. That was proceeded by Rickie Weeks at least making a productive out and driving in Gomez on a grounder.
The Dodgers would come back to take the lead though. They scored one run in the bottom of the third on an A.J. Ellis RBI single then tied it in the fourth as Matt Kemp singled, stole second, and scored on an errant throw by Alex Gonzalez.They scored one more in the sixth on an RBI groundout to take a 3-2 lead.
That lead was short-lived. With two outs in the top of the seventh, Aoki singled on a grounder to second. He also advanced to third on a poor throw from Skip Schumaker. The Dodgers had made a couple of defensive substitutions earlier in the game, but Carlos Gomez rendered them pointless and jacked his third home run of the year to give the Brewers the lead. The next inning, Martin Maldonado hit a two-run homer of his own to put the Brewers up 6-3.
Andre Ethier would lead off with a home run against John Axford in the bottom of the eighth to cut the lead to two. Fortunately, Axford came back from that with two easy groundouts and a punch out of Jerry Hairston.
Things got a little dicey in the ninth inning as Jim Henderson came on to close it out. He sandwiched a walk to Nick Punto in between two outs and should have gotten the third out on a Carl Crawford grounder. However, Betancourt (who hit clean-up during this game) couldn't field the ball and allowed Crawford to reach. Punto advanced to third on the play. Crawford then stole second base to put two runners in scoring position with a two run lead and two outs. A.J Ellis then grounded out to Alex Gonzalez to end the game.
The defense in the game was dreadful as both teams committed several mistakes in the field. Carlos Gomez had a nice catch though, and also had a great game at the plate. Along with the homer, he picked up a couple of singles and scored two runs. Aoki also reached three times on a single and two walks. The seventh-eighth-ninth spots in the order combined to go 1-12 with five strikeouts. The only hit came on a pinch-hit single from Logan Schafer.
The Brewers and Dodgers will play one more tomorrow. Milwaukee has a tough task as they go against Clayton Kershaw. Kyle Lohse gets the call for the Brewers with first pitch scheduled for 3:10 CT.