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Todays Matchup: Brewers (Greinke) vs Twins (Marquis)

Alright, you're going to bat fourth this time and I guess you at first and crap who's third base?
Alright, you're going to bat fourth this time and I guess you at first and crap who's third base?

If the Brewers can't win with this pitching matchup, I might give up on them.

Jason Marquis (2-3, 6.68) is not a very good pitcher anymore and has been absolutely dreadful this season. He has only had one season with an ERA under 4.43 since 2005. Six of his thirteen seasons have seen an ERA over 5.00. His career FIP is 4.82. (6.43 this season).

Marquis has always had a fairly high walk rate and a fairly low strikeout rate, but he's taking it to new levels this year. Thus far, he has been walking more hitters than he's struck out with a 3.34 K/9 and a 3.62 BB/9. He has had home run issues in the past, and those appear to have sprung up again considering his 1.95 HR/9.

Marquis does have two quality starts this season, out of six total starts. He has yet to allow fewer than three earned runs. However, he also has yet to allow more than five. Of course, he hasn't been pitching very deep into games. He's also been getting hit very hard, with a 1.76 WHIP.

Marquis throws three pitches: An 89 MPH sinker, an 84 MPH slider, and an 81 MPH changeup.

The veteran righty has faced six Brewers at least ten times. You're not going to get much better results than these:

Player PA Line
Aramis Ramirez 29 .370/.414/.704
Ryan Braun 24 .500/.583/.700
Cesar Izturis 22 .409/.409/.591
Rickie Weeks 21 .278/.381/.444
Corey Hart 20 .368/.400/.684
Nyjer Morgan 17 .400/.473/.533

Zack Greinke (4-1, 2.88) is having an absolutely phenomenal season thus far. He is currently sporting a 1.71 FIP, a 9.54 K/9 and a 1.80 BB/9--17th best in the MLB. But the best thing about 2012 Zack Greinke? He is not giving up any home runs. Almost literally. This season he has allowed just one home run in fifty innings.

And his stats would look even better if you took out his disaster against the Cubs in his second start of the season. During that game, he allowed eight earned runs in 3.2 innings. You eliminate that and all of a sudden he has a 1.55 ERA. Holy mackerel!

Zack Greinke is doing damn near all he can to help salvage this Brewers season. Remember a couple seasons ago when, if someone were to suggest a move at an every-day spot, the response would be "The hitting is not the problem"? Well, we can't quite turn that around to say starting pitching because of Randy Wolf, and we really can't say it about pitching all together because of the bullpen. But Zack Greinke, Shaun Marcum, and Yovani Gallardo have been phenomenal. I shudder to imaging this team without even one of them.

Greinke has faced five current Twins at least ten times. Here is how they have fared:

Player PA Line
Joe Mauer 47 .275/.383/.300
Justin Morneau 30 .172/.200/.241
Denard Span 20 .333/.368/.444
Alexi Casilla 18 .188/.222/.313
Jamey Carroll 13 .231/.231/.231

The lineups, featuring Jonathan Lucroy in the clean up spot!:

And in the bullpen:

Juan Perez pitched 0 innings (9 pitches) yesterday.
Francisco Rodriguez pitched 1 inning (19 pitches) yesterday.
Kameron Loe
pitched 0.1 innings (9 pitches) yesterday.
Manny Parra pitched 0.2 innings (29 pitches) Friday and 2 innings (23 pitches) yesterday.
Jose Veras pitched 1 inning (18 pitches) Friday and 0.2 innings (14 pitches) yesterday.

John Axford pitched 1 inning (15 pitches) Friday and 1 inning (12 pitches) yesterday.
Tim Dillard pitched 0.1 innings (6 pitches) Friday.