After coming very close to sweeping the Cubs in Wrigley in a four game series last week, the Brewers returned to Miller Park and dropped 4 of 6 to the Pirates and Reds. Their starting pitching too often gave up multiple first inning runs, but really the fault was in their bats. They scored just 15 runs in those 6 games, and had only 6 doubles, a triple, and 5 homers. For the week, as a team they hit .206, had a slugging percentage of .328, had an on base percentage of .257...OPS of .585. I wonder how they even won two.
TOP HITTING STORY: Candidates were scarce for this spot, as I didn’t want to go negative (you can thank me later, Jonathan Villar) and the opening paragraph was negative enough. So Ryan Braun welcomed a new child, and led the team with a .313 batting average. He had the triple, so he slugged .438. No walks, so his OPS was .751. Woo hoo!
Honorable Mention: If you thought candidates for the top were scarce...well, I like Hernan Perez, so his symmetrical .300/.300/.300 week gets the nod. His six hits led the team...sigh.
TOP PITCHING STORY: Lefty Brent Suter appeared in four of the six games, which might just have been enough to win this. But he pitched well; in 4.1 innings, he allowed no runs, 2 hits, and no walks. He struck out 2; his WHIP was 0.46. Brent has been good out of the pen since going there after one start, and he is a viable option for a spot there next spring.
Honorable Mention: Chase Anderson had another solid outing in his lone start of the week, going 5.2 innings with four hits, a run, a walk, and six k’s. Kyle detailed how Chase has turned in a good second half here.
TOP FIELDING STORY (guest appearance): The Brewers had a triple play Friday night! The Reds got the first two on and sent them on a 3-2 pitch to Joey Votto, which he lined to Chris Carter at first. Sleepy stepped on the bag for the second out and flipped it to Orlando Arcia for the third. Jocularity ensued in the dugout.
IMHO: I have been thinking that Keon Broxton might just need more time to fully recover from his broken wrist than will allow him to be ready to start next year, and rather than push him back before he is ready, I hope that the Brewers give him all the time he needs, including perhaps starting the year in AAA. Let him get fully ready and with some at bats under his belt before he comes back up. He deserves a full shot at the job, but not until he’s healthy.
Now comes the heresy part of tonight’s opinion: I hope the Brewers give a full crack at the job to Lewis Brinson. And if Ryan Braun is dealt for prospects, I hope the Brewers invite Corey Ray to camp and if he does OK, give him a spot on the team. Even starting. He isn’t a seventeen year old; he’s 22 and will be 23 in September next year. Sure, he might struggle, but IMHO a season in Milwaukee where he hits .240 with 15 homers will do him more good than a season at AA or AAA. And if he has a poor spring, then send him down. Nobody will be the wiser if the intention was to keep him up if he holds his own. Heck, even if Braun is still with the team, I sure hope they bring him to camp, secretly hoping that he forces their hand.
I’ve had enough of the Kirk Nieuwenhuis’, Ramon Flores’, Alex Presleys, and Jake Elmores of the world.
COMMENT OF THE WEEK: Cheating this week. During Friday night’s game David Stearns made an appearance in the TV booth with Rock and BA, and I begged them to ask him about the minor league affiliate situation. I don’t think they heard me, and maybe weren’t following along while they interviewed him, so I bemoaned the softball questions they did ask...and then wondered if I would have the guts to ask tough questions. chris33 asked what I would ask him, and surprisingly, many suggestions were made:
- Did you favor the Brewers when you worked for the Astros so you could be hired as the Brewers GM? (chris33)
- Questions about plans for developing the young players (em)
- Do you read BCB? (em)
- When was Hank replaced? (drezdn)
- Do you have the will to win? (icelandreliant)
- Where is Hank 1 buried? (em)
- Who is buried in Hank’s tomb? (aaronetc)
- Are you ever going to call up Corey Ray? (icelandreliant)
- Who’s a good boy? (drezdn)
- When are you going to sign some more guys who put the ball in play? (icelandreliant)
- Are you Stavid Dearsn? (AkBrewfan)
- Would you eat beans with George Wendt? (drezdn)
- Why is Jake Elmore on the team? (icelandreliant)
- Is something wrong with Damien Magnifico)
- Do you like pina coladas? Do you like movies about gladiators? (icelandreliant)
It appears that icelandreliant should be a reporter.
So we face the final week of the season with the Brewers going to Arlington to face the Rangers, and finishing up in Denver against the Rockies. There is still time for Chris Carter to get hot and win the homerun title. And Luc and Gogo...goin’ to the play-offs! Awesome.