Watching the Milwaukee Brewers arrive at their current 5-1 record has been exciting to say the least. Coming into tonight’s game with the Cincinnati Reds, I’m sure many of us were asking, “What could be next?” While not as exciting as some of the other games so far this year, it was a tight game, and a game that resulted in what matters most: a win.
For the Brewers, Jhoulys Chacin made his second start of the season against Reds’ pitcher, Anthony DeSclafani. Both pitchers maneuvered the opposing lineup with little incident over the first two innings. In the top of the third, the Brewers put some pressure on DeSclafani. Lorenzo Cain and Travis Shaw walked. Jesus Aguilar went the other way on a very tough slider, resulting in a single. That single scored Cain from second base, making the score 1-0.
In a good piece of hitting, Jesus Aguilar flicks an opposite-field single to RF to drive in a run with two down in third. #Brewers take 1-0 lead.— Tom (@Haudricourt) April 2, 2019
Chacin was sailing along until the fourth. He gave up a walk to Joey Votto, and Yasiel Puig ripped a line drive single into left-center field. Eugenio Suarez lined a shot past the glove of Travis Shaw for a double. That scored Votto to tie the game 1-1.
DeSclafani pitched well for the Reds through five innings. In a move that will certainly be questioned in Cincinnati, new Reds’ manager, David Bell, lifted his starter for former Brewer, Zach Duke. He began the inning by walking Zeus. Batting right handed, Yasmani Grandal smoked a ball to the right-center field wall. He was only able to get a single out of it, but Aguilar did get to third.
Wanting to get a better match up against Orlando Arica, Bell once again went to his bullpen, bringing in Michael Lorenzen. I wonder if David Bell knew prior to making the change that Arica was 4 for 9 with a home run against Lorenzen lifetime prior to that at bat. Well, make it 5 for 10 with two home runs life time. The first hit of the season for Orlando Arica came in a big way. The three-run opposite field home run put the Brew Crew ahead 4-1. As the Reds’ announcer, Thom Brennaman said after the home run, “the numbers were there before the at bat ever took place...Arcia has full ownership of Lorenzen.”
In the bottom half of the sixth, OBP machine, Joey Votto, does what he does best, get on base. He walked for the second time in the game. Yasiel Puig next hit a weak pop up that fell over Jesus Aguilar for a single. Chacin then walked Suarez for the last hitter he would face in the evening. Alex Claudio took over for Chacin, but was unable to keep the Reds off the scoreboard in the sixth. Coming in with bases loaded and one out, he induced a ground ball that scored Votto. The Reds’ manager continued the night of over managing and lifted left handed hitting Derek Dietrich for light hitting shortstop, Jose Iglesias. Upon announcement of the change, Craig Counsell sprang from the dugout to call Junior Guerra into the game. Guerra subsequently induced a groundout to end the inning, leaving runners stranded at second and third.
The Reds got another run back in the bottom of the eighth. Eugenio Suarez lifted a solo shot over the left field wall to make it 4-3. The Brewers did put up a threat in the top of the ninth as Christian Yelich doubled for another extra base hit. After intentionally walking Travis Shaw, Aguilar lined out to end the inning.
It looks like Josh Hader has been designated the closer for the Brewers, at least for the time being. He came to close the game in this one after pitching the previous day, which is something the Brewers have been adverse to do in the past. After throwing nothing but fastballs for his first three appearances, he began to throw breaking stuff at Jose Iglesias who he walked. He did away with the experimentation with breaking stuff and came back to get Tucker Barnhart with a 95 mph fastball up that he could not catch up with. He followed that with a strikeout of Jose Peraza. Kyle Farmer did make contact in his at bat but popped up to end the game and give Hader his fourth save of the young season.
The Brewers are now 5-1 early on. The Brew Crew will be looking for the sweep tomorrow. It is a day game as first pitch will be at 11:35 CST. Try not to get into trouble as you listen or watch the game at work. Freddy Peralta is scheduled to take the ball for the Brewers and Luis Castillo will do the same for the Reds. Watch the game on Fox Sports Wisconsin or listen on WTMJ.