It was a little too close for comfort, but the Brewers pulled off a 3-2 win against the Padres in 11 innings thanks to a JJ Hardy single that scored Craig Counsell. Mike Rivera came through again, so I guess it's time to put him back on the Bench for a few weeks. And Brian Shouse. How about that guy? Brian Shouse is really an unsung hero for the Brewers this season. His double-play on Gonzalez last night won the game. Eric Gagne almost lost it and gave even more evidence that he is a terrible terrible pitcher and should never be allowed to touch a baseball ever again. Why can't yost see that? I'm no Yost-basher, but this is just too obvious to miss. If Gagne was a 24-year-old kid, he'd be off the roster by now. When it comes to winning games, you have to get the garbage off your team whether it's rookie garbage or $10 Million garbage.
In other Brewers news, the Crew signed third-baseman Mike Lamb yesterday. If you go by VORP (for players with 100 PAs or more), Bill Hall is the 6th worst thrid-baseman in major league baseball with a VORP of -4.2. The guys that are worse are:
Donnie Murphy: -4.6
Jose Castillo: -5.5
Jack Hannahan: -9.7
Mike Lamb: -10.5
Andy Marte: -11.6
I guess you can fall off the floor. Nice sign Brewers.
Some more numbers. The Brewers are 81-60. They're 4 games up on the Phillies (77-64) in the Wild Card and also two games better than the Mets (79-62). That means that Philly's E# is 18, and if the Mets were in the Wild Card race, there's would be 20. St. Louis's is 16. Our E# in the NL Central is 18 as well. The E# is basically the reverse of the "magic #." It's the combination of Brewers' wins and Phillies' losses that would eliminate them from the race. When you start to talk about these things with 21 games left in the season, the remaining schedule becomes important. If one team that's trailing you wins against another that's trailing you, the first may gain ground, but the second would lose it. Or if one team that's trailing you wins a game against a team that you're trailing, they may gain ground, but they may be helping you gain ground too. Sadly, the Mets and Phillies only have 2 more games against each other, today and tomorrow. The Mets also have 4 against the Cubs. The Cardinals have 6 against the Cubs. So if the Phillies make up any ground on us this weekend, they'll also be taking over their division and lowering the Mets' E# in the Wild Card. If the Mets are left fighting for their division and the Wild Card, they'll have to chip away at Chicago's lead over us to do so. If St. Louis wants to move up in the Wild Card, they'll have to give the Cubs some losses, which could move us into the NL Central lead. Obviously, this stuff goes on all season, and a win is a win, no matter when it happens, but with 21 games left, the intricacies involved in the particular match-ups become more apparent.
In today's game, the Brewers send Ben Sheets (12-7, 2.97 ERA, 41 BB/144 SO) against Padres Ace Jake Peavy (9-9, 2.69 ERA, 49 BB/155 SO). Peavy is a monster, but I have a feeling the extra innings last night may have woke up the Brewer bats. I'll be at the game, attending bachelor party #6 for the summer. Go Brewers!
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