Some things to read while getting your eye checked.
A little more than two weeks ago the Brewers started a 13-game stretch against the NL Central's three likely playoff teams. the Reds, Cardinals and Pirates. They went 7-6 in those games and the final win came yesterday, when they shut out the Pirates 4-0 at PNC Park. Morineko has the recap, if you missed it.
The biggest story from yesterday's game may be the resurgence of Yovani Gallardo, who pitched seven shutout innings on just 93 pitches and appears to be back on track since coming off the DL. I'll emphasize the newsworthiness of this development with a double barrel Tweet of the Day:
Clint Hurdle on Gallardo (0.93 ERA last three starts off DL): "This is the guy you saw the past two years."— Adam McCalvy (@AdamMcCalvy) August 30, 2013
#Brewers fans have to be heartened by Gallardo's resurgence. So too, I imagine, any potential offseason suitors.— Howie Magner (@howiemag) August 30, 2013
Really, though, the most amazing thing about yesterday might be the fact that the Brewers won on a Thursday for the first time since April. They're now 2-11 on Thursdays this season. They've also won back-to-back getaway day games, which had been a season-long struggle.
Yesterday's win also improved them to 12-7 in their last 19 road games. @MikeVassallo13 notes that they're unbeaten in their last six series away from Miller Park.
Other notes from the field:
- Yovani Gallardo's win last night was his eleventh against the Pirates (h/t @MikeVassallo13). The only MLB team he's beaten more often is the Astros (13 wins).
- Khris Davis' second inning double was the Brewers' first hit on a 3-0 count this season (h/t @joe_block). They're now 1-for-9 when putting a ball in play in that count.
- Norichika Aoki was out of the starting lineup again last night as he continues to deal with patellar tendonitis. He did pinch hit for Yovani Gallardo in the eighth, though.
- Despite a share of first place being on the line, just 23,747 fans paid to see Thursday night's game in Pittsburgh (h/t @AdamMcCalvy).
Let's put a bow on the Pirates series with a look at Aramis Ramirez's home runs this week, with help from Hit Tracker and Larry Granillo of Wezen-ball:
|Tuesday||Aramis Ramirez||432 feet||24.03 seconds|
|Wednesday||No home runs|
|Thursday||Aramis Ramirez||402 feet||22.47 seconds|
After last night's game the Brewers returned home and will open an interleague series with the Angels tonight. Wily Peralta takes on Jered Weaver at 7:10, and William Boor and Kevin Massoth have the MLB.com preview. Over in the FanPosts, resident Brewers/Angels fan Brew Angel has a look at some players to watch on both teams.
Before tonight's game, though, there may be a chance for all of us to engage in some trade speculation. Last night Tom Haudricourt reported (via Twitter) hearing a rumor that the Brewers are looking to trade a reliever before Saturday's roster deadline. MLB Trade Rumors speculates that John Axford, Burke Badenhop or Michael Gonzalez could all be of interest.
2014's biggest storyline is likely to be the return of Ryan Braun, and at least one national writer is pretty optimistic about his performance. Ray Guilfoyle of Fake Teams has Braun projected to be the #5 fantasy hitter in all of baseball next season. In another sign of how far Carlos Gomez has come in the last year, he's also on the list at 22.
Tom Gorzelanny is also likely to be back with the team next year, although his role is tough to pin down at this point. Nicholas Zettel of Disciples of Uecker has a look at variations in his release point and slider usage over the course of this season.
It's starting to look increasingly likely that Scooter Gennett will also open 2014 as a member of the Crew. He had three hits again last night and Adam McCalvy wrote about how he's making the most of his second opportunity in the majors.
In the minors:
- Our condolences go out this morning to Mike Fiers and his family, as Doug Melvin mentioned yesterday that his mother recently passed away (h/t @Mass_Haas). You may recall that she had been battling lupus for quite some time.
- On the field the affiliates went 1-4 last night with the lone win coming from Helena, where center fielder Omar Garcia had three hits in the Brewers' 7-5 win over Missoula. You can read about that and more in today's Minor League Notes.
- Chris Mehring of Rattler Radio has highlights and more from Wisconsin's 6-3 loss to Quad Cities.
- Nashville infielder Eugenio Velez, who I had forgotten was in the organization, got a single in the first inning last night to extend his hitting streak to 18 games and his on-base streak to 32. (h/t @JeffHemPBP)
- Nashville broadcaster Jeff Hem, by the way, has an interview with Velez.
Angels: Placed third baseman Chris Nelson on the DL with a hamstring strain.
Indians: Are expected to acquire outfielder Jason Kubel from the Diamondbacks for a PTBNL or cash and released pitcher Brett Myers.
Mets: Acquired reliever Vic Black from the Pirates as the PTBNL in this week's Marlon Byrd trade.
It won't take long this morning to go around the NL Central:
- The Brewers, as you've likely heard, beat the Pirates 4-0 last night.
- The Cardinals, Reds and Cubs were off Thursday.
You can read more about all of last night's action in Matt Sullivan's Friday edition of Around the Bases at SBNation.com.
Here are today's updated standings and probables:
|Cardinals||78||55||--||@ PIT||6:05p||Shelby Miller v Francisco Liriano|
|Reds||75||59||3.5||@ COL||7:40p||Bronson Arroyo v Jeff Manship|
|Brewers||59||74||19||v LAA||7:10p||Wily Peralta v Jeff Weaver|
|Cubs||56||77||22||v PHI||1:20p||Jeff Samardzija v Roy Halladay|
Today In Brewer History was off this morning but we do have a couple of bits of history: Chris Jaffe of The Hardball Times notes that it's been 2000 days since the Brewers released Eric Gagne and 31 years since they acquired Don Sutton from the Astros.
Now, if you'll excuse me, the pressure is getting to me.