Zack Greinke Fans 9; Leads Crew to Victory
Doug Melvin's highly acclaimed addition of Zack Greinke this past off-season made his debut at Miller Park last night....and he didn't disappoint. Coming off his sub-par performance in Atlanta last Wednesday Zack came firing out of the gate. He fanned 2 in the first inning alone and went on to strike out 9 San Diego batters. Roenicke was trying to limit him to 100 pitches for the game but decided to pull him early once he hit the 89 mark. During the post-game interview Greinke even admitted that he was a little tired; but that he was gradually improving over the past 2 starts. Eventually, come the 4th or 5th game Zack said he should be at the 110-115 mark.
The City of Milwaukee and the state as well as the 27,000 fans that came out to Miller Park on a school night (they were hoping for 30,000) were all treated to the club's true Ace. His velocity was on-point (mid 90's) and his control was perfect, not even walking a loan batter. When was the last time a Brewer starter didn't walk a batter? I'm trying to remember? It's unheard of, especially over the past 2 seasons. When all was said and done, Greinke went 6 complete and threw 59 strikes out of the 89 pitches.
Rickie Weeks went yard for his 7th shot of the season. Carlos Gomez continued to collect hits with his towering shot to LF that ended up being a triple. Prince Fielder, Jonathon Lucroy, and Corey Hart all doubled. Weeks drove in 2 runs while Lucroy added another one.
Probably one the most impressive defensive plays that I have seen in the past 10 years happened last night for the Milwaukee's Yuniesky Betancourt and Rickie Weeks. In the 8th inning SD's Jason Bartlet came to the plate with a runner on 1B. Bartlett hit a liner up the middle and Betancourt quckly ran to snag it while passing Rickie Weeks who was covering 2B....he then flipped in behind his back to Weeks who then caught it barehanded and launched it to Prince Fielder who collected the 2nd out.
I'm Betancourt's biggest hater when it comes to his defense. Let's not get ahead of ourselves here, he was a disaster in KC and the season is only 20% done. However, the guy has been playing some decent defense and he's actually been the pillar in that infield.
- Zack Greinke had 15 swinging strikes last night in his 89 pitches, which turns out to be a 16.8% "swinging strike rate", this according to Bernies Crew. This appears to be excellent, according to the blogger. For me, it's numbers...but this man is clearly smarter than I am, so I will take his word for it.
-Matt Latos has now lost 10 straight games, dating back to last season. The guy is typically horrible in the first couple of innings but then settles down, which he seemed to do last night. Reminds me of Dave Bush.
-I love listening to Jonathon Lucroy on the (Milwaukee) AM 1250 morning show the day after games. He's laid-back and he gives us an inside look in to catching. He's said a couple of times now that catching for Marcum and Greinke is "easy". Meanwhile, I'm sure he gets a sore back when catching for Narveson. Wolf tends to put the ball in to the dirt quit a bit as well.
-Erick Almonte has been cleared to resume physical activity.
-Remember from last week when the Indians sent OF/1B Jordan Brown to the Brewers for some cash? Well, he has moved right in to a starting role in the OF and he's batting .263 with a double and 2 RBI through 5 games. I really like this relatively quiet addition that Melvin made by bringing the 27 year-old player on board. He adds depth to the outfield and he can hopefully be groomed in to a 1B to back up Gamel, when he takes over 1B next season.