One day after pummeling Cardinals pitching for nine runs, the offense was back at it again for the Milwaukee Brewers in this afternoon’s series finale at Busch Stadium. Daniel Ponce de Leon got things started for the homestanding Cards, and Lorenzo Cain greeted him rudely as he lined the first pitch of the game for a double to left field. Daniel Vogelbach, getting the start at first base, followed with a single to bring Cain home and give Milwaukee a quick 1-0 lead. After Christian Yelich flew out, Avisail Garcia smashed a home run for the second consecutive day to give the Brewers a 3-0 lead. Travis Shaw followed with a walk, then Manny Pina doubled to put runners on second and third. Jace Peterson hit a fly ball for the second out, then Luis Urias was intentionally walked to load the bases. Unfortunately for St. Louis, the move backfired as starting pitcher Brett Anderson drew a walk to force in a run and make it 4-0.
After bringing 10 men to the plate in the first, Milwaukee’s hitters got back to work in the second. Vogelbach walked to lead off, then Yelich singled. After a Garcia flyout, Travis Shaw put a charge into a 449-foot home run to make it 7-0. That ended Ponce de Leon’s day, and Johan Oviedo settled things down for the Cardinals over the next several innings after that.
As mentioned, Brett Anderson started this game for Milwaukee and though he didn’t have his best stuff, he gutted through 5.0 complete innings with solid results to qualify for the win. Anderson yielded five hits and two walks, but his pitch-to-contact approach worked well as he allowed only one run even though he struck out just one opposing batter. He tossed 91 pitches before yielding to Eric Yardley in relief.
The former #IndyBallGrinder’s inning was quite an adventure, and it started with a walk and a hit by pitch. Then Dylan Carlson singled to load the bases, and an Austin Dean double brought home two runners and made it 7-3. Luckily for Yardley, the next batter, Lane Thomas, grounded one right back to him. After looking the runner on third back, Yardley relayed to Vogelbach at first for out number one. But Dean had broken for third and never returned, and was tagged out for a huge double play. Pinch-hitter Matt Carpenter then flew out and the rally was thwarted.
Oviedo threw 4.2 scoreless innings after replacing Ponce de Leon early in the game, allowing only two hits and a pair of walks. Jordan Hicks (1.1 IP) and Tyler Webb (0.2 IP) also posted zeroes, but the Brewers got two insurance runs off Genesis Cabrera in the ninth. Avi Garcia reached on a throwing error by Paul DeJong to start the inning, then two batters later, Manny Pina launched his first home run of the season to extend the lead to 9-3.
JP Feyereisen and Brad Boxberger each threw a scoreless frame for the Brewers after Yardley, then when the lead was increased to six runs, Craig Counsell went to Drew Rasmussen for a confidence-building outing after his recent struggles. He did allow a single to Justin Williams, but punched out a batter while posting his own zero to close out the game and get the Brewers up over .500 with a record of 5-4.
Worth noting in this one that both Travis Shaw and Christian Yelich left the contest early. Yelich is listed as day-to-day with back soreness, and Shaw is also day-to-day with a bruised right shin after fouling a ball off himself.
The Brewers return back home to American Family Field tomorrow evening as they start a series against the Chicago Cubs. “Not Just Fastball” Freddy Peralta gets the start against Adbert Alzolay, with first pitch scheduled for 6:40 PM central.