Win: Kyle Lohse (3-8)
Loss: Edinson Volquez (6-4)
Save: Wade Davis (8)
HR: Cain (5)
I'm not going to lie, at a certain point it's gotten kind of hard to recap Brewers games. It's hard to know how to recap them. Doing it the normal way doesn't really seem sufficient or worthwhile -- what's the point in seeing how the game unfolded when the end result of the game matters so little anymore? I'm sure not everyone feels that way, but that's where I, personally, am at.
The Brewers lost today, and they lost pretty badly. So what? The Brewers have been losing all season long, and are going to keep losing. How the Royals got three runs in the first, four total in the fifth and sixth, and another in the eighth is water under the bridge. It just doesn't matter anymore. The Brewers mounted some comeback in the ninth, but again, so what? Them winning wouldn't change the likely outcome of the season.
That might sound really...depressing? I don't think that's the right word, but it's the closest I can come up with. But I don't mean it that way. I mean, it's to the point where you have to take other things out of the game than the final score and how the two teams reached the final score, at least from the Brewers perspective.
Instead, the value in Brewers games is now in how it changes their future. What learnings can we take away for what the Brewers might have in a year or two or five? Did one of the light hitting utility infielders have a good game to push himself ahead of the pack? Did a player increase/decrease their trade value? Is a potential free agent making a case to be signed? That kind of thing.
For today's game, the biggest take-away, I guess, is that Kyle Lohse is still, frankly, terrible and continues to shoot his trade value in the foot. Lohse lasted five innings, gave up five hits and five runs and two walks while striking out two. Kyle Lohse has made 14 starts and only three of those have been quality starts. He now has a 6.44 ERA.
Before 2015, Lohse was a consistent, above-average pitcher whom the Brewers could have traded for maybe a mid-level prospect or two. But the Brewers thought they had a chance of competing, so trading him (in addition to Yovani Gallardo) didn't make sense. If anything, Milwaukee would have been able to get a similar deal around the trade deadline because Lohse is so consistent it makes sense he wouldn't torpedo his value. Except he did, and here we are.
I don't honestly know that Lohse is worth anything in a trade right now. A contender with really bad pitching problems who sees something fixable might take a flier, but Milwaukee won't get anything back. Guys like Jake Peavy and Justin Masterson had poor seasons and still brought back stuff in a trade, but Lohse is a different kind of terrible this year.
Lohse is entering Jeff Suppan levels of worthless. That's not great. Thankfully there's still time before the deadline to recoup trade value and the Brewers have nothing to lose by letting him try to get better in the next month and a half. It's not looking great though.
In other possible-but-not-likely-to-be-traded news, Jonathan Lucroy went 2-4 with a walk. That brings his season batting average up to .218. It's his second-straight two-hit game, so hopefully he's starting to get on the right track. I'm still not worried about Lucroy at all, but him righting the ship will help eliminate some future question marks, whether that's his ultimate trade value or his value in a contract extension. There's a while to go before either happens, probably, but it's another step.
The Brewers may stink on the field, but there's plenty to take away from each and every game. The how-they-got-there for the final score, maybe not so important anymore. But besides, as the old saying goes, bad baseball is better than no baseball.
Milwaukee and Kansas City square off again tomorrow. First pitch is slated for 7:10 CT.