Milwaukee Brewers Weekly Check-In (4-4-11)

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If you’re not one of those baseball nerds who follows every single thing going on in the Milwaukee Brewers Organization, don’t worry, because The Sports Bank’s Nick Grays has you covered with what happened in the past week and what’s going on in the future.

And if you are one of those nerds, feel free to join in on some good old analysis of America’s pastime in the Brew City.

This week we talk about the Brewers depressing series with the Reds and the team going ahead.

By: Nick Grays

Standings:

Milwaukee Brewers (0-3) (0-1 in series)
– Tied with the Houston Astros (0-3) for last place in NL Central
– Trail the division leading Cincinnati Reds (3-0) by 3 games
– Run Differential at -12

Last Week’s Headlines:

Reds Handled the Brewers in Every Way Possible

Opening Day for the Brewers started out with a bang as the first two batters Rickie Weeks and Carlos Gomez hit back-to-back solo home-runs. Yovani Gallardo wasn’t perfect, but he put forth a quality start (two runs in six innings pitched).

All was for none though as the bullpen failed to continue what Gallardo started when closer John Axford melted down in the bottom of the ninth and yielded a three-run walk-off blast from Ramon Hernandez who was 4-of-5 on the day.

Axford’s early blown save already marks a third of what he had last season (3 in 27 save attempts). I wouldn’t worry too much because his biggest mistake came down to a misplaced fastball which left Great American Ball Park. There’s no way Axford has a complete season meltdown a la Derrick Turnbow.

If you thought Thursday’s game was bad, Saturday and Sunday were even uglier. Saturday saw second-year Reds pitcher Travis Wood shut down the Brewers offense while Sunday featured 12 runs and four home-runs from Cincinnati.

The Reds continue to dominate the Brewers by sweeping them in a season-opening series at Great American Ball Park. Milwaukee would like to stay far far away from Cincinnati where they are a paltry 1-10 in their last 11 games there.

Even though the pitching wasn’t pretty, offensive stars Ryan Braun and Rickie Weeks had a good weekend while hitting .364 and .308 respectively. They also hit two home-runs a piece and combined for six of the team’s eight RBI.

Looking Ahead:

Brewers Return to Miller Park in Search of Continuity

Historically, the Brewers have always played well at Miller Park. They will get a chance to turn around the season starting Monday when they begin a seven game stretch at home. First, it’s the Atlanta Braves who come in for a four-game series and then the rival Chicago Cubs for a three-game series.

In order for the Brewers to contend in the NL Central, they need to play better defensively and hit the ball consistently. They addressed the pitching problems in the off-season, but appear to still have some issues with their defense and offense.

Monday, April 4th 1:10 PM (vs. Atlanta)
Probable Pitchers: LHP Chris Narveson (0-0) vs. RHP Brandon Beachy (0-0)

Tuesday, April 5th 7:10 PM (vs. Atlanta)
Probable Pitchers: RHP Yovani Gallardo (0-1) vs. RHP Derek Lowe (1-0)

Wednesday, April 6th 7:10 PM (vs. Atlanta)
Probable Pitchers: TBA vs. TBA

Thursday, April 7th 12:40 PM (vs. Atlanta)
Probable Pitchers: RHP Shaun Marcum (0-1) vs. RHP Tommy Hanson (0-1)

Friday, April 8th 7:10 PM (vs. Chicago)
Probable Pitchers: LHP Randy Wolf (0-1) vs. RHP Carlos Zambrano (0-0)

Saturday, April 9th 6:10 PM (vs. Chicago)
Probable Pitchers: LHP Chris Narveson (0-0) vs. RHP Matt Garza (0-0)

Sunday, April 10th 1:10 PM (vs. Chicago)
Probable Pitchers: TBA vs. TBA

What did you think of the Brewers horrendous series with the Reds? Where does the team go from here and do they have some significant concerns? Let me know by commenting below.

Nick Grays is a senior editor at the Sports Bank where he covers the Wisconsin Badgers, Green Bay Packers, Indiana Pacers and Milwaukee Brewers. Follow him on Twitter by clicking here or visit his blog Nick Knows Best.

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