After losing two out of three games in Oakland, the Milwaukee Brewers were looking to bounce back beginning with today’s series opener in Chicago. Unfortunately, things did not go as hoped for Craig Counsell’s squad.
Zach Davies got the start for the Cream City Nine, and his recent slide continued with today’s outing. He found trouble right away in the bottom of the first, coughing up a leadoff home run to Jason Heyward to start things off. The Cubs would go on to load the bases against Davies in the opening frame but he managed to escape while allowing only the one run.
Milwaukee drew even with the Cubs in the top of the second thanks to a Ryan Braun solo home run off Chicago starter Jose Quintana, but North Side Nine began to pull away in the third inning. Kris Bryant led off with a single then came around to score one a one-out, two-run homer by Javier Baez. As the inning continued, Willson Contreras singled with two outs and was followed by a base hit from David Bote that put runners on the corners. That brought the pitcher Quintana to the plate, and he rapped just hit third base hit of the season for an RBI single to make it 4-1. He is batting .073 this year.
Davies lasted just four innings, giving up four runs on seven hits with a pair of home runs allowed. His ERA now stands at 3.74 on the season and has risen by nearly a full run over the course of his last three starts, during which time he has allowed 17 earned runs in 13 innings pitched.
Jeremy Jeffress came on to relieve Davies in the fifth and his own struggles continued. He allowed two doubles, a single, hit a batter, and was charged with two earned runs while recording four outs during today’s game. That is now four appearances in a row that he has been scored upon, and his earned run average stands at an ugly 4.91 in 2019 after posting one of the best relief seasons in franchise history last year.
Milwaukee added a second run charged to Quintana when Braun led off the seventh inning with a double and later scored on a Manny Pina RBI groundout. Alex Claudio, Jay Jackson, and Drew Pomeranz finished off the game pitching-wise for Milwaukee, with Pomeranz looking particularly impressive during his team debut, striking out a pair and sitting at 92-94 MPH with his heater.
It goes in the books as a 6-2 defeat, sinking our beloved local nine to 57-54 overall. That is 2.5 games back of the Cardinals for the division lead and 1.5 games out of Wild Card position. These two teams will square off again tomorrow afternoon, with Gio Gonzalez toeing the slab against Cole Hamels. The battle of the southpaws is set to begin at 1:20 PM central.