When the Houston Astros moved to the American League, there was speculation that every team in the NL Central would lose three to four wins off their total. This clearly did not account for the struggles of the Milwaukee Brewers.
St. Louis Cardinals SP Shelby Miller continued his scorching hot start–six IP, one ER–en route to a 6-1 victory. All eight position players had a hit for the Cardinals, as they drubbed Brewers SP Kyle Lohse.
While most assumed that the Cincinnati Reds would likely cruise to an NL Central victory, the Cardinals’ strong starting pitching and deep, powerful lineup are going to stick around.
While earlier today it was reported that Cardinals RP Jason Motte would undergo season-ending surgery, it doesn’t seem like the team is in a rush to change much. With starting pitching like the performance tonight from Miller, last night from Jake Westbrook and consistently from Jaime Garcia and Adam Wainwright, the bullpen shouldn’t be much of a concern.
The Brewers, however, should be concerned. Though they just got Aramis Ramirez off the disabled list, their problems may just be too numerous. While new acquisition Kyle Lohse, presumptive ace Yovani Gallardo and strikeout fiend Marco Estrada haven’t pitched well, the lineup is just not deep enough to compensate.
After closer John Axford lost his job, the pitching staff continued to take steps backwards. This team has to consider being a seller at the trade deadline. With utility guy Yuniesky Betancourt playing well, Ramirez returning from injury and RP Jim Henderson pitching well, they should look at restocking their farm system in exchange for these veterans.