Our Milwaukee Brewers scored 35 runs in five game this week. That’s seven runs a game. And it includes a game that they only scored one in. So in the other four they averaged 8.5 runs per game. They lost the one that they only scored a singleton in, which isn’t too surprising. But they only went 2-2 in the other four, because they allowed a whopping 10 plus runs in those games. I mean, really. I guess you can rejoice that in a week where you gave up an average of almost nine runs a game you somehow managed to escape with a 2-3 record. But this was a hard week to watch Brewer baseball, even when they won. The Twins and Nationals are good teams. But somehow I suspect that they aren’t nine runs a game good.
Milwaukee will apparently trail the Cubs and Cards by two games, and are a couple out of a Wild Card spot, too. Are they a playoff team? Gosh, it sure doesn’t feel like it.
TOP HITTING STORY: So when you score lots of runs, somebody is hitting. Actually, lots of guys are hitting. Mike Moustakas carried a 1.275 OPS this week, and his three doubles and three homers drove in eight. Moose is up to 30 homers now, which would be fantastic production for a second baseman. It’s good for a third baseman, though, and as much as the collapse of Travis Shaw hurts it means that Keston Hiura plays, and even though he didn’t make our list, his 1.084 OPS is pretty impressive this week.
Honorable Mention: I only move Ryan Braun down to honorable because he only had seventeen plate appearances, but his OPS of 1.458 is just fine and dandy. Want a surprise? Braun didn’t strike out once all week, and walked three times. Huzzah! His two-homer game on Saturday night was crucial in the Brewers’ absurd 15-14, fourteen inning win. He stole a base, too.
TOP PITCHING STORY: This is, oddly, a negative. Hoodathunk. The Milwaukee Brewers’ left-handed staff (Gio Gonzalez, Alex Claudio, Josh Hader, and Drew Pomeranz) had eight appearances this week. They worked seven innings with a WHIP of 2.57 and an ERA of 14.14. And four homers allowed. And two blown saves. I guess that means that the righties had an ERA under 10, so we got that going for us. Which is nice.
Honorable Mention: The righties look good in large part because of Adrian Houser’s start. A two hitter over seven innings, with one run allowed. Of course, that was the only game the Brewers didn’t hit in, and they lost 2-1. But Houser is the one youngster that is currently contributing to the staff, and he wasn’t even on the radar at the start of the season. Probably thought of as a Missions-Brewers shuttle guy. But for the month of August he has started three games and worked 18 innings, or 6 per start. He looks like a solid candidate for the rotation next year. Then again, at this point last year, so did Freddy Peralta and Corbin Burnes. They were both demoted this week for excrutiatingly poor pitching; Freddy to AAA and Burnes from San Antonio back to AA. How is this team still in any kind of play-off contention again?
IMHO: Craig Counsell is taking criticism from fans for his pitching management, but when nobody can get anybody out it’s tough to look good as a manager. But I’m here to congratulate CC on his handling of Ryan Braun this season. While Braunie has appeared in four more games than Christian Yelich in 2019, he has 71 fewer plate appearances. He has had regular days off, and is often lifted for Ben Gamel (and now Trent Grisham) for defensive purposes in the back end of games. The regular rest has kept Ryan fresh and productive.
If he gets 92 plate appearances in the last 37 games (which is possible), he would even qualify for the batting title! Which he wouldn’t win. But his slash of .284/.344/.501, OPS of .841, is better than I expected this season. He was hot towards the end of last season. If he does that again, he will be top five in MVBrewers.
COMMENT OF THE WEEK: David Stearns is shaking up how the Brewers evaluate talent, both for draft and other player acquisition purposes. Milwaukee relieved three members of their scouting department of their responsibilities, and they will not be replaced. The management staff has decided that film evaluation and analytics are a more efficient (and yes, slightly cheaper) way to evaluate talent, so here we are. Our favorite K-Pop giffer and our favorite bicycle afficionado discussed the story:
Maybe this is good, maybe it isn’t.
It’s the kind of move that we’ll never have enough information to evaluate fairly.
Here to post K-Pop gifs and chew bubblegum.
Out of bubblegum.
Since when did we need evidence to speculate wildly?
”I was pretty emotional there, and said some unprofessional stuff I shouldn’t have said. I apologize for that. I’ll move past it, and get back to business”
I can just picture the conversation. Scout: “Jeesh, why do I even bother doing this? You never listen to me anyways!” David Stearns: “You know, you’re right.”
So. Three with the first place Cards in St. Louis, the obigatory off day Thursday, and three back home with the D’Backs. And we bid a fond farewell to Craig Coshun and Dan Plesac.
Statistics courtesy of Fangraphs