When you start the season 0-4, you take things one thing at a time. I know that’s cliché, but you really do want to win four games in one, and that’s not possible. You have to win, and then win again, and keep it up until you right the ship. Today, Casey McGehee righted the ship, and got the Brewers back to .500 with one swing of the bat. A 2-run shot off the Cubs Kerry Wood in the bottom of the 8th gave Milwaukee a 6-5 win, and made that opening day loss that started a four game losing skid, a little more of a distant memory.
With Yovani Gallardo getting the start against the Cubs Casey Coleman, one figured the Brewers would be in line to get a win, but it didn’t come easy. Coming off a 2-hit shutout over the Braves on Tuesday, Gallardo struggled through 5 innings today, giving up 4 runs on 7 hits and 4 walks. But the offense picked him up.
Down 2-0 in the bottom of the first, Prince Fielder battled against Coleman before connecting on the 8th pitch of the at-bat for his 2nd home run of the season, a 2-run shot that tied the game up at 2-2.
But the Cubs would add single runs in both the 2nd and 3rd innings to once again take a 2-run lead. And once again, one swing of the bat erased all the Cubs work. Ryan Braun hit his 4th HR in 10 games, another 2-run shot, and once again the game was knotted, this time 4-4.
It stayed that way until the 7th when the Cubs got to the Brewers bullpen. Marlon Byrd led off the frame with a double off of Sean Green After Aramis Ramirez flew out, Mitch Stetter came in and walked Carlos Pena. That was all for Mitch. Kameron Loe came in and uncorked a wild pitch prior to walking Geovany Soto. A Tyler Colvin ground out plated the go ahead run for the Cubbies.
That set the stage for the 8th inning, when Chicago brought in Kerry Wood. After getting ahead of Yuniesky Bettancourt 0-2, Wood proceeded to walk Bettancourt, which is saying something since Yuniesky walks about as much as the people of Los Angeles.. Bettancourt walked 23 times in 2010 in 579 plate appearances. But he worked his 2nd of 2011—yes, he already has two!!—off of Wood. Two outs later, the struggling McGehee came to the plate, and this time Casey at the Bat ended happily.
The 3rd 2-run homer of the game for the Brewers proved to be the difference maker as closer John Axford worked a scoreless ninth inning sending Milwaukee to their 5th win in 6 games. Yes, that Opening Day loss seems like a long ways away… like way back in March.
About the Author
Written by Scott Johnston
Scott Johnston is a longtime Sports TV Producer/Writer from Los Angeles who now lives just outside of Boston. After a long career at KCAL-TV in L.A., where Scott covered such things as Kirk Gibson’s HR, Hank Gathers death, and Magic Johnson’s retirement, NBA ll-Star Game MVP performance and subsequent return to the NBA. His favorite team is the Oakland A’s and whomever happens to be playing the Yankees, USC or the Cowboys on that particular day. Scott left his staff position at KCAL and formed his own small production company in 1996 while continuing to freelance there and at other stations, including WTTG in DC for two years. His company, ProTVSports, started out covering one team during Spring Training in 1997 but now covers six of the Cactus League teams. He also covers tennis and golf events during the year and has had the privilege of covering 5 NBA Finals, including two of the last three. Scott loves all sports, but considers baseball to be his favorite. He loves politcs, reading, movies and his wife and two daughters—not in that order!