Win: Dane De La Rosa (6-1)
Loss: Jim Henderson (3-4)
Save: Ernesto Frieri (29)
HR: Iannetta (7), Conger (7)
MVP: Jonathan Lucroy (.375 WPA)
LVP: Jim Henderson (-.603 WPA)
I think this is almost the epitome of a Marco Estrada start, or what we can expect from Marco Estrada. He strikes out nine batters and only walks one, but the rest of his line makes it look like an incredibly average start. He pitched seven innings and gave up four earned runs. He allowed nine hits to the Angels. He was even so Estrada-esque that he gave up a homer to Chris Iannetta.
He strikes out a whole bunch of batters, but gives up a good amount of hits and home runs. It's like Estrada is going through his pitching teen years, trying to find out who he is in life. Am I the pitcher who will make batters swing and miss or am I the pitcher who will allow batters to make good contact? You're not supposed to be both, but Marco Estrada is both. He's not the only pitcher like that--it's not totally abnormal--but it is still really weird to me. Choose who you want to be, guys. His hits/9 isn't absurdly high. It's probably right around average. But when you're striking out so many people and not walking many, I figure that you should be pretty good at limiting hits. Estrada can be vexing like that, sometimes.
Anyway, Estrada had that start and, despite a hot Brewers' start, it looked like he might be on the hook for the loss. After Scooter Gennett and Jean Segura each singled to lead off the bottom of the first, Jonathan Lucroy doubled both men home for the Brewers for two runs. Aramis Ramirez drove in Lucroy for the Brewers third run, but after Estrada's last inning, the Brewers trailed 4-3 in the middle of the seventh inning.
It was the top of the order who came through once again in the bottom of the seventh, just like in the first inning. Norichika Aoki singled, Gennett was hit by a pitch, Segura singled, and Lucroy drove in another two runs with a double to take a 5-4 lead the team would not relinquish.
Jim Henderson, still fresh off the team's trade of John Axford, gave up the game in the ninth, though. He secured the first two outs well enough, but gave up a double to Josh Hamilton. Hank Conger followed that up with a two-run homer to retake the lead and, eventually, the win. The Brewers got a single from Gennett and a tough at-bat from Segura in the ninth, but it wasn't enough.
Lucroy went 3-4 on the day, with two doubles, four RBI and a run scored to lead the Brewers offensively. Overall, the Brewers top three batters in the lineup (Gennett, Segura, Lucroy) reached base in nine of their 15 plate appearances and scored four of Milwaukee's runs.
The Brewers and Angels play one more tomorrow, with first pitch scheduled for 1:10 CT.