It was a battle between two All-Star pitchers in San Francisco, as Corbin Burnes took on Carlos Rodon. The two both occupy spots in the top five in strikeouts, and both are aces for teams looking to make a return to the postseason.
However, while the two All-Stars headlined, it was an All-Star snub and a backup outfielder that would be the difference makers — a swinging bunt by Jonathan Davis and another stellar performance by Devin Williams would guide the Brewers to an extra-innings win, defeating the Giants 3-2.
The Brewers created plenty of opportunities early but couldn’t find their way onto the scoreboard. In the first, they had two men in scoring position with Victor Caratini at the plate, but a flyout ended the threat. In the second, the bases were loaded with no outs, but again they couldn’t capitalize due to three straight strikeouts from Davis, Andrew McCutchen, and Willy Adames. The third saw their leadoff man Mike Brosseau get on, but the combination of a Hunter Renfroe strikeout and Victor Caratini double play kept the Brewers off the scoreboard. The first three innings saw five hits and no runs for the Brewers.
Meanwhile, Burnes was sharp. The Giants didn’t get a runner on base until the third, when a walk and stolen base by Mike Yastremski, followed by a wild pitch, gave them men at the corners with only one out. A passed ball allowed Yastremski to score, giving the Giants a 1-0 lead. Joc Peterson then made it a 2-0 ballgame with a base hit to center.
The Brewers finally found a way to score and close the deficit in the fourth. They again had the bases loaded with McCutchen at the plate, but this time, McCutchen drove in a run with a sacrifice fly, cutting the Giants' lead in half. That would be the only run they could get across in the inning, leaving runners on base for the third time in four innings.
They would strike again in the sixth, as singles by Davis and McCutchen put a runner in scoring position again for Willy Adames. Adames would deliver this time, driving in the speedy Davis on a single to left, making it a 2-2 game. However, the score would stay tied, as back-to-back fielder’s choices kept the score tied at two.
The wacky third would be the only time Burnes found himself in trouble, as the right-hander kept the Brewers in it by limiting the Giants to just two runs. Burnes did what he does best, getting strikeouts. He recorded double-digit strikeouts for the 19th time in his career, breaking Yovani Gallardo’s record for double-digit strikeout games in franchise history. He also went deep into the game, entering the eighth inning for just the second time this season. His final line in 7 1⁄3 innings pitched, four hits, and one earned run on three walks and 10 strikeouts.
Burnes got pulled in the eighth after allowing two men to get on with one out. Counsell called on Hoby Milner to control the game and that’s what he was able to do. It got tricky, as a hit-by-pitch with two out forced the bases loaded, but he was able to get out of the jam by inducing a deep flyout from Darin Ruf to end the inning.
Extra innings would be required to decide this one, as both teams went down in order in the ninth. Christian Yelich was in the game to pinch run for Caratini at second. After Urias lined out, Rowdy Tellez got on with a walk. Tellez and Yelich each moved over a base thanks to a Kolten Wong ground out. That set up Jonathan Davis, who was already 1-for-3 with a run scored. Davis produced with a half-swing grounder to third, just soft enough to get Yelich home and allow Davis to reach safely, giving the Brewers their first lead of the game, 3-2.
With the lead, Devin Williams would come in and slam the door on the Giants. The All-Star snub was in his best form, striking out one and retiring the Giants in order, giving the Brewers the 3-2 win. Williams recorded his 26th consecutive scoreless appearance en route to his sixth save in as many chances.
The two teams will be back at it again tonight. Brandon Woodruff with faceoff with Alex Wood, with the first pitch being at 9:15 pm CT.