Cleat Geeks

Brewers Week in Review: Three Up Three Down

Record for the Week: 4-2

Opponents for the Week: VS Athletics VS Mets

Summary: This week formed somewhat of a shift week as the Brewers had been playing teams equal to or below them in the standings. That changed midweek when the Mets arrived for a four game series this weekend. Despite the upgrade in competition the Brewers continued to hold their own in the wins and losses department.

Three Up:

ScooterGennettScooter Gennett: The Brewers primary second baseman has been working his way back into the line-up over the last several weeks following an injury. Over his last seven games Gennett recorded 12 hits in 30 at bats. He was particularly good against the Mets. He went 4/4 with a double and a RBI on Thursday.  In the series against the Mets he was 7 for 16 at the plate. Gennett has continued to show progress in an area he has struggled with in his career – hitting left handed pitching. Genett hit a home run off a Met’s left handed reliever on Saturday followed by two more hits off a Mets starting pitcher who was a left hander on Sunday.

Jeremy Jeffress: At the beginning of the season there was question from some as to who would close games for the Brewers or if they could use a couple people in situations requiring a closer. Partly due to injury and partly due to Jeffress’s performance that conversation appears to be over. He is 18 for 19 on save chance conversions with his only blown save being a one run blown save to arguably the best offense in the National League in the Chicago Cubs. His ERA is also quite solid at 2.67. If he continues to perform on this level I would expect him to get serious consideration as closer on the National League All-Star team that will be named next month.

Zach Davies: Davies has been excellent so far in June and honestly that term may not be doing it justice. In three starts so far in June against the Cardinals, Athletics and Mets Davies has pitched 21 innings. In those innings he has allowed two earned runs on 8 hits. He has also recorded 21 strikeouts in 21 innings. Davies is not going to blow anyone away with the speed he throws at but with each start he appears to be learning more and more about how to be a pitcher. His tempo has been consistent and his location has been excellent. He is even showing an impressive characteristic for a young pitcher the ability to get out of jams. He was in a mess in the first inning Sunday. He was facing a bases loaded one out situation. He showed composure, made pitches and got out of the inning with no runs scoring.

 Three Down:

Run down communication: During a situation in extra innings in Friday night’s game the Brewers infield poorly communicated a run-down situation. One of the Brewers infielders started a run down against a runner that had already been tagged out. Due to this communication break-down the lead and ultimately winning run of the game was allowed to score.

Execution: Execution was again a negative at times this week. The Brewers had several occurrences in the same loss as referenced above where they had a man at third with less then two outs and the offense failed to advance or score base runners. The path to beating teams like the Mets is to match-up with them on pitching and match the zeros their pitching staff throws. Then you have to be able to get timely hitting and execute when needed to win the game. In the two games the Brewers lost in the Mets series offensive and defensive execution issues at key points in the games were critical factors in losses.

WilyPeraltadissipointedWily Peralta: Peralta was sent to the minors following his last start. The Brewers have now sent 40% of their opening day rotation to the minors to attempt to get things corrected. Peralta leaves with an ERA of 6.68. That is the highest among any starting pitcher in the big leagues.

Bottom Line: This is another solid week for the Crew. This team is fighting hard against strong pitching staffs. All seven games in the series with the Mets this season were decided by three runs or less. The pitching staff has made significant strides over the last two months. That is clearly evidenced by matching the team that represented the National League in the World Series last year pitch for pitch. While the Brewers only won two of the seven from the Mets it should be lost or taken lightly how tight the games were. The Brewers were in all of the games and had reasonable chances to all but maybe one. The Brewers now head west for nearly a week and a half. This trip has been a struggle over the years. It will be essential for the pitching staff to continue to pull the majority of the wagon. The offense will be facing a tough list of pitchers and the Brewers pitchers must continue matching zero for zero. This team deserves credit for how it has performed over the last month.

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