WP: Brandon Woodruff (2-2)
LP: Dillon Peters (0-2)
With the critical series against the Cubs just four days away, the Brewers couldn’t afford to take another loss to the Marlins before heading to Pittsburgh. Thankfully, they didn’t leave anything to chance this time.
Both pitchers started strong, scattering some hits but holding both offenses off the scoreboard. Miguel Rojas did have to leave the game in the second inning with a strained shoulder sustained while trying to field a single from Jesus Aguilar. He was listed as day-to-day after the game.
Then, the fourth inning hit and the offense took off. Three straight hits started the inning, with Manny Pina driving in the first run on a single to make it a 1-0 game. Keon Broxton and Orlando Arcia struck out back-to-back after that, and then the scoring really got going. After Woodruff walked to load the bases, over the course of four pitches, the Brewers went from a 1-0 lead to a 6-0 lead. Hernan Perez beat out an infield single on the second pitch he saw to increase the lead to 2-0. On the next pitch, Domingo Santana cleared the bases with a double to up the lead to 5-0. Then, after intentionally walking Ryan Braun, Travis Shaw singled on the second pitch he saw to bring in Santana and increase the lead to 6-0. That ended Peters’ day, as Odrisamer Despaigne came in to the game in relief. The sconing continued as Aguilar and Pina each singled to increase the lead to 8-0. Broxton ended the inning with a groundout, as the thirteenth Brewers batter of the inning.
Woodruff would give up some of that lead in the bottom of the inning, though. After striking out Christian Yelich to start the inning, Woodruff allowed four straight hits (two doubles and two singles), with the big damage coming on a double from Ichiro Suzuki that drove in two and cut the Brewers lead to 8-3. However, Woodruff got groundouts from Mike Aviles and Giancarlo Stanton to prevent further damage.
That was all the Brewers really needed on the day. Travis Shaw drove in two more runs, one with a sacrifice fly in the sixth and another on a single in the eighth, to increase the Brewers lead to 10-3. The Marlins only managed two more baserunners in the game, one on a single and another on a fielding error.
On offense, all of the starting position players recorded a hit, and all except Hernan Perez reached base multiple times. Domingo Santana and Travis Shaw each drove in three runs, and Santana reached base on all but one of his plate appearances. Jesus Aguilar and Travis Shaw each had three hits on the day as well.
Meanwhile, Brandon Woodruff helped get the bullpen some much needed rest with a long start today. He pitched seven innings, allowing just those three runs in the fourth inning, but nothing else. He didn’t walk a batter in the game and struck out five as well. Jacob Barnes and Taylor Williams each added a scoreless inning of relief as well.
The Cubs ended up winning over the Cardinals today, so the Brewers deficit remains at four games, and as long as they can keep it there (or better) after the Pirates series, they will control their destiny entering the Cubs series next weekend. Meanwhile, the Cardinals fall to six behind the Cubs, and have basically played their way out of the playoff race with just thirteen games to play. The Rockies game is still in progress, though they hold a 3-1 lead over the Padres in the bottom of the sixth.
Next up for the Brewers is a three-game series in Pittsburgh. While the Cardinals, Cubs, and Rockies all have Monday off, the Brewers and Pirates will open their series. Brent Suter is scheduled to pitch game one for the Brewers, and Jameson Taillon will pitch for the Pirates. First pitch is at 6:05 pm.