Freddy Peralta threw 6 innings of scoreless, 2 hit ball, striking out 8, and the Brewers withstood a furious Braves comeback to salvage a game from the 3 game set.
Huascar Ynoa could not manage a clean inning among his 4 2/3, and the Brewers broke through with 2 runs in the bottom of the 3rd, 1 run in the 4th, and a 2 run homer in the 5th by Avisail Garcia that Ender Inciarte was almost able to pull back into the park (or is it a field? Our announcers debate.) Ynoa’s other totals included 9 hits, 2 walks, and 6 strikeouts.
Here’s your periodic reminder that the problem with having 14 pitchers is that sooner or later, you are going to use them. Down 5 – 0, with 4 1/3 innings to cover, and with Peralta dealing, it’s understandable, but then Jesse Biddle threw 13 consecutive balls in the 6th.
Hey, Biddle Biddle didn’t put a pitch in the middle of his swing like he didn’t care, but you really don’t want to walk this way. A couple of wild pitches and a passed ball led to 3 more runs. To their credit, the Brewers did add a bunt hit, and held a 8 – 0 lead after 6.
Then it got interesting. Biddle must have messed the field up so badly, no one could do anything right. It started on the mound as J.P. Feyereisen relieved Peralta to start the 7th. Two hits, 2 walks, and a wild pitch allowed the Braves to score their first 2 runs. Brent Suter relieved Feyereisen, and then the Brewers defense came down with The Biddle. Consecutive defensive miscues (throwing late to second on a fielder’s choice, and an error) allowed another run to score, and left the bases loaded.
Freddie Freeman unloaded them with his 11th homer of the season, and in a flash cut the score to 8 – 7.
Josh Tomlin came on in the bottom of the inning, and after a walk, a fly out, and a single, yielded to Sean Newcomb. To be fair, Tomlin may not have been Biddle’s fault. Newcomb promptly hit a batter, and a Lorenzo Cain single made it 10 – 7. Newcomb survived a walk of his own to battle out of the inning and stick the double Grybo.
The Braves got a run back in the 8th, when Dansby Swanson singled, stole second, and took third on a throwing error into center field. He scored when William Contreras reached (all together now) on an error.
Luke Jackson restored order with a clean 8th, like he does, setting the stage for the Braves to make Josh Hader work in the 9th. Freeman led off the 9th with a walk, and went to 3rd on a 1 out single by Ozzie Albies. Swanson scored Freeman with a sac fly, and an Austin Riley single moved the tying run to 2nd. From there, however, Hader was able to strike out Contreras and earn his 9th save.
Riley finished 2 -2 with 3 walks, and Swanson went 2 – 4.
I’m going to list below some career stats of 4 players; take a moment and guess who they might be. Spoiler alert: the names will come right after the stats, so scroll lightly.
6 seasons: .244/.293/.364, 3.4 dWAR
6 seasons: .246/.318/.393, 4.1 dWAR
6 seasons: .242/.321/.353, 0.8 dWAR
9 seasons: .244/.310/.363, -0.1 dWAR
Pretty similar right, offensively anyway?
Swanson and Arcia are essentially the same age; the 27 year old Dansby is the elder by 6 months. Heredia is 30 and Adrianza is 31.
Do you gamble that Arcia can come up and give the Braves the kind of bounce Adam Duvall and Austin Riley gave the team in recent seasons, when they came up after a hot streak in AAA? Or do you trust that Dansby is about to go on the kind of tear he would need to get back to his career norms? Do you continue with the Riley analogy and see if Arcia can play the outfield? Heredia has been getting the job done, but is it sustainable? Adrianza is right about where you would expect, and probably has the least upside.
I’m inclined to give Dansby some more time, and to leave Heredia in center, but we need a couple from this group to exceed their history.