Milwaukee once again was anemic at the plate, but their one run was enough to not waste a third straight good pitching performance.
Junior Guerra once again helped rest an overworked bullpen, picking up his second win of the season as the Brewers bested the Padres 1-0. Junior went 6 innings for the third straight game, this time allowing only 2 hits and 2 walks. He struck out 4, and was in control throughout.
The Brewers scored first, but it could have been a much bigger inning. Domingo Santana pulled a single to left to lead things off, and Jonathon Villar walked on 4 pitches. Ryan Braun just missed on a flyball deep into the rightfield corner that was hauled in by Matt Kemp (who finished second to Braun in the MVP vote in 2011, and later said that Braun should lose his MVP award because of his PED suspension...an unbiased opinion, I'm sure). Both runners tagged and advanced. Padres starter Christian Friedrich wanted nothing to do with Jonathon Lucroy, throwing 5 straight out of the strike zone (Luc stubbornly fouled off the 3-0 pitch). Chris Carter hit a towering pop-up to medium center that Santana tagged and scored on. Villar got a poor break off of second and was thrown out when Brett Wallace cut off John Jay's throw and caught Villar at third. Jonathon is making far to many poor decisions on the base paths.
Guerra gave up a lead off hit to Jay in the third, and then fell behind 2-0 to Alexi Ramirez, and thoughts of his 6 runs allowed in his previous two third innings danced in our heads. But Ramirez hit into a 6-4-3 double play and Matt Kemp (who doesn't take losing votes well) flew to center. The Brewers started the bottom of the inning with hits from Guerra (his first major league hit!) and Santana, but Villar inexplicably bunted the runners over - leading the Padres to walk Braun intentionally. Luc and Carter failed to bring in anything, and the game remained 1-0.
The Brewers couldn't produce that insurance run as the game progressed, but the Padres were even more futile. After Guerra's stellar six innings, the "A" relief corps of Michael Blazek, Tyler Thornburg, and Jeremy Jeffress finished off the shut-out with a scoreless inning each. They combined to allow 1 hit and struck out 4. Jeffress remains perfect in nine save opportunities, and pitched around an error from Villar to lead off the ninth. JJ induced a double play grounder that Villar handled, and he fanned Wallace to end the game.
The Brewers moved to 15-21, while the Padres fell to 16-21. Tomorrow evenings tilt starts at 6:10 with Wily Peralta (2-4) for the Milwaukee facing San Diego's starting pitcher will be announced, as Andrew Cashner was put on the DL today.