The Milwaukee Brewers have already clinched their division and a spot in the playoffs. History says that how a team fares over their final few weeks of the season doesn’t generally affect how they perform in the postseason. Still, the Menomonee Valley Nine have not played the greatest baseball lately, and added another game to the ‘L’ column against the Dodgers on Friday night.
Things started off well enough for the Brewers. Sure, Eric Lauer gave up a solo home run to Trea Turner in the first inning, but the offense got going in a big way against Clayton Kershaw in the early going. The second inning started with back-to-back singles by Eduardo Escobar and Luis Urias, then a double by Lorenzo Cain tied the game at 1-1. An Omar Narvaez fielder’s choice brought in another, then with two outs, Kolten Wong doubled to right to score one more run. That would be the end for Kershaw, who left the game with the dreaded forearm discomfort.
Milwaukee added two more in the third against Brusdar Graterol. Christian Yelich singled with one out, then Escobar hit an RBI double, then Urias followed him with a run-scoring single. At the end of the third inning, it was 5-1 Brewers.
Eric Lauer had been money in the second half of the season and owned the Dodgers during his career, but in the fifth, both those trends ground to a halt. It started innocuously enough. An Austin Barnes single with one out, off the glove of KoWo. The an Albert Pujols single to shortstop. Mookie Betts then singled, and all of a sudden the bases were loaded. Corey Seager popped out on an infield fly, but Trea Turner got a first-pitch changeup that he deposited out over the fence in left-center for a grand slam, his second home run of the game. That brought the score to 5-5.
The Brewers went to Jandel Gustave in the sixth, and after working a scoreless frame, he surrendered the game in the seventh. A Matt Beaty solo shot gave the Dodgers a 6-5 lead, then Mookie Betts was hit with a pitch and moved to second on a single by Seager. A wild pitch moved both runners up, leading to an intentional walk to Trea Turner to load the bases. Another wild pitch plated a second run in the inning, then after a groundout by Justin Turner, Brent Suter was called into the game for Gustave. He gave up a single that scored one of Gustave’s runs, and by the end of the frame, it was 8-5 Los Angeles.
The Brewers got one back on an RBI single by Dan Vogelbach in the eighth, but Kenley Jansen locked down a four-out save for Los Angeles to close out an 8-6 win for the Dodgers. These two teams will meet again on Saturday night, with first pitch set for 8:10 PM central between Corbin Burnes and Julio Urias.