The Milwaukee Brewers (28-35) will not have to travel far to take on the Minnesota Twins (25-37) this weekend. The Brewers are coming off an embarrassing series against the Kansas City Royals in which they were swept. Milwaukee should have won all three games but their bullpen failed them three consecutive nights. Meanwhile, the Twins are coming off a series loss against the Philadelphia Phillies and are looking to rebound against their interleague rival.
Friday June 15, 2012
Yovani Gallardo (5-5, 4.21 ERA) vs. Francisco Liriano (1-7, 6.45)
Yovani Gallardo has won three of his past four starts and is pitching great, with the exception of his outing against the Chicago Cubs on June 5. In his three victories, Gallardo has five earned runs with 18 strikeouts. In his loss against the Cubs, he struck out 10 but somehow allowed five earned runs, even with having good command. The Brewers desperately need a pick-me-up after their embarrassment, and hopefully Gallardo can give that to them.
Francisco Liriano began the season as a starter but was switched to the bullpen for several weeks after giving up eight earned runs in his first two starts. After not giving up an earned run in that stretch, the Twins decided to give him another chance at a starting job, which he has responded decently. Liriano pitched well in his first two starts since being added back to the starting rotation as he only surrendered one earned run and struck out 17 batters in 12 innings pitched. However, in his last outing against the Cubs he gave up four earned runs on four hits in 5 2/3 innings.
Saturday June 16, 2012
Michael Fiers (1-2, 4.50 ERA) vs. TBD
Michael Fiers pitched well in his first start when he was called up a couple weeks ago, but since then he has struggled on the mound. Fiers has allowed nine earned runs on 23 hits in 18 innings pitched. He does have the strikeouts to go along with it but he leaves too much over the plate which results in him getting knocked around. The Brewers desperately need him to find a way to pitch as he did in his first start.
Minnesota’s starting pitcher is still being determined for Saturday afternoon.
Sunday June 17, 2012
Zack Greinke (7-2, 2.96 ERA) vs. Nick Blackburn (3-4, 7.68 ERA)
Zack Greinke pitched outstanding in his return to Kansas City, unfortunately, Milwaukee’s offense was non-existent and the bullpen could not hold on. Greinke did give up a solo home run in the first inning but settled down after that, striking out eight batters in seven innings. He has been phenomenal this season and is by far one of the best starters in the National League. The rest of the team needs to get on board because the Brewers are simply wasting away his talent.
Nick Blackburn pitched against the Phillies in his return from the disabled list. He was not dominating by any means but he did throw the ball well enough to garner the win. Blackburn allowed four earned runs on eight hits and only struck out one batter in five innings. It will be interesting to see how the Milwaukee batters do against him, as he likes to give up plenty of hits, which equals many earned runs.