Sorry, Pittsburgh. Miller Park just isn’t getting any easier for you, I guess.
Last night’s win was just what the Brewers needed to keep their current momentum at full force. Bill Hall and Rickie Weeks added to their homerun counts and put the Crew on top of the Pirates in the bottom of the 7th and Milwaukee’s bullpen has never been so sharp in order to keep the lead. Trevor Hoffman notched his first save as a Brewer and the Pirates had fallen under the Miller Park spell a ******** 17 times in a row.
Well, actually, make that 18.
Yovani Gallardo, as I’ve said before, is quickly becoming the new young ace for the Brewers. He pitched 5 hitless innings today, before an Andy LaRoche double. After that, only one more Pirate hit was allowed and the lone run that scored the entire game was also at the hands of the 23 year old pitcher. Gallardo hit his 2nd homerun of the season in the 7th inning and literally one-upped Pittsburgh. Not only did he make it through the 8th only surrendering 2 hits and scored the only run of the ballgame, but Yovani also had a career high 11 strikeouts. Seriously. Watch out for this one.
Gallardo’s stellar outing also helped save a bullpen that had to send in 9 pitchers between Monday and Tuesday’s games. Carlos Villanueva pitched a perfect 9th inning today and notched his second save of the season. (It doesn’t make me any less nervous when he’s on the mound, though.)
So, Milwaukee has their first sweep of the season and is also sitting at .524–the first time the club is over .500 so far in ’09. Not only that, but they’re smack in the middle of a 3-way tie for second place in the NL Central with Pittsburgh and Cincinnati. However, the Crew is riding a 3-game winning streak into their 4-game series with Arizona beginning tomorrow night at Miller Park. Buuuuuut, the Diamondbacks blanked the Cubs 10-0 earlier today, so I’m sure they’ve got quite a bit of their own momentum to contend with.
The match-up tomorrow is Jeff Suppan (1-2, 7.32 ERA) against Max Scherzer (0-2, 4.91 ERA). Suppan’s only win came 10 days ago, but his last outing in Houston he took a no decision in an eventual 11-inning, nail-biting win for the Crew.
Here’s to hoping Milwaukee’s on a roll and can come up with a monster of a winning-streak before heading out to PNC Park on Monday. I’m sure those Pirates will have revenge on the brain.