WP: Wily Peralta, 1-0; LP: Tyler Chatwood, 0-1; Save: Neftali Feliz (1); Homeruns: Colorado, none; Milwaukee, Eric Thames (1), Travis Shaw (1), Jonathan Villar (1)
The Milwaukee Brewers lost their opening two games when their best starters from last year a: got hurt, and b: got hit...hard. Wily Peralta’s five shutout innings to notch his, and the Brewers, first win of the season were much needed.
The Brewers broke a nothing-nothing tie with three lightning quick runs in the bottom of the third. After Jonathan Villar led off the inning with a strikeout, Eric Thames launched his first Brewer homer deep into right center for a 1-0 lead. After an infield hit by Ryan Braun, Travis Shaw drilled a two run shot into straight away right for a 3-0 lead, one that Milwaukee would never relinquish.
Peralta worked around some shaky, but not awful, defense in the third inning, both on plays by young shortstop Orlando Arcia. After the red-hot Mark Reynolds doubled for the Rockies to lead off the inning, he blindly headed to third on a Tony Wolters groundball in front of him to Arcia. Reynolds was dispatched in a rundown, short to third and back to Arcia. Wolters strayed too far past first, and Arcia had him dead to rights at first but his throw pulled Thames away from the bag and Wolters made it back. After Rockies’ pitcher Tyler Chatwood sacrificed Wolters to second, Brewer catcher Manny Pina picked Wolters off of second but Arcia dropped the throw. Charlie Blackmon worked Peralta for a walk, but a fielder’s choice from DJ LeMahieu ended the threat.
In all, Peralta worked five innings, allowing three hits, walking just the one, and striking out five. Quite the different start to a season from last year for Big Wily. Peralta (77 pitches) was replaced by Carlos Torres in the top of the sixth. Torres gave the Brewers two scoreless innings despite walking the first two batters he faced and three over-all. Torres enticed a double play grounder by Nolan Arenado to Villar at second to end the sixth.
Milwaukee added a run in the bottom of the sixth when Ryan Braun drew a one out walk, was balked to second, and came around to score on an odd double by Hernan Perez (who played rightfield tonight). With two down, Perez hit a sharp single up the middle, and when neither shortstop Trevor Story or second baseman LeMahieu covered second Perez kept right on going around first for a heads-up extra base.
Cory Knebel looked sharp in the top of a scoreless eighth, fanning one and walking one. The Brewers added two BMIRs in the bottom half of the frame when Jesus Aguilar rapped a pinch single (upping his early, small sample batting average to .750) and Villar ripped a 3-2 offering from reliever Jordan Lyles out to right for a 6-0 lead.
Taylor Jungmann came on for the Brewers and gave up the Rockies run on a two out RBI single from Reynolds (sigh), scoring Story who had doubled with one down. Jungmann hit pinch hitter Stephen Cardullo and walked back-up catcher Dustin Garnau, loading the bases and putting the tying run in the on deck circle.
You know what that means! It was now a save situation, and Neftali Feliz came in and struck out Blackmon on a 2-2 fastball to earn his first Brewer save; a 5 run lead, one batter save. But hey! He did his job.
Thursday afternoon’s 12:40 pm tilt will not be televised on FSNW. The Rockies (2-1) will send Antonio Senzatela to the mound for his major league debut, and the Brewers (1-2) will try to get back to .500 with Chase Anderson on the bump. Anderson had a solid spring, and pitched will against the White Sox last Friday in the exhibition series at Miller Park.