Friday, June 13, 2014

Game of the Day (6/12/14)

Brewers 5, Mets 1 (13). Milwaukee's Kyle Lohse took on New York's Jon Niese; both starters have been much better this year than could have been reasonably expected 3 or 4 years ago.

Both starters were also terrific in this game, as you may have inferred from the final score. The first hit came in the top of the second; it was a home run by Aramis Ramirez, putting Milwaukee in front 1-0. Lohse, meanwhile, was perfect his first time through the order; Milwaukee had a couple of chances thanks to hit batters (Rickie Weeks in the third, Ramirez in the fourth), but failed to capitalize, and the Mets tied it in the bottom of the fourth when Daniel Murphy doubled and made it to third on a Carlos Gomez error, then scored on Bobby Abreu's sacrifice fly.

The teams put intermittent baserunners on from there, but failed to score any of them for quite some time. Jean Segura led off the fifth with a single, and Chris Young started the bottom of the inning by reaching on a Segura error. In the sixth, Ramirez and Abreu both singled and were stranded. Lohse picked up a hit in the top of the seventh, and allowed one to Andrew Brown in the bottom of the inning; neither runner made it past first.

Niese was pulled after Gomez singled with two outs in the eighth, and Jeurys Familia retired Ramirez to end the inning. Lohse set the Mets down 1-2-3 in the latter half of the frame, and Familia did the same to the Brewers in the top of the ninth. Wil Smith walked Lucas Duda and allowed a single to Young in the bottom of the ninth before pinch hitter Ruben Tejada grounded out to end regulation with the game still tied.

Josh Edgin was perfect in the top of the tenth, while Brandon Kintzler allowed an Anthony Recker single and a Murphy walk before leaving them on. Gonzalez Germen kept the bases clear in the top of the eleventh; Kintzler walked the bases loaded (the third walk was intentional), then got a force at home and struck out Recker to end the threat. The Brewers finally threatened in the twelfth against Carlos Torres, who allowed singles to Mark Reynolds and Segura before striking out the next two hitters to leave the runners on; Zach Duke then retired the Mets in order.

Milwaukee broke it open in the top of the thirteenth, starting when Ryan Braun singled and Jonathan Lucroy homered. They then loaded the bases on a Gomez single, a Ramirez double, and a Khris Davis walk. Reynolds singled in a run, chasing Torres for Dana Eveland. Eveland coaxed a force at home and a strikeout before hitting Weeks with a pitch to force in another run. Francisco Rodriguez worked a 1-2-3 bottom of the inning to end the game.

This was a good game, obviously; the Brewers didn't give up an earned run, and yet the Mets hung with them for twelve innings. Outside of the predominantly-excellent pitching, the most notable tidbit is this: the Mets walked only two hitters all game, but hit three of them with pitches. They plunked Rickie Weeks as often as they walked... everyone. If it weren't for the fact that Weeks gets hit by pitches all the time (he's led the league twice and his career total is 120), I would expect that to be the sort of thing a team might remember in a rematch.

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