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  • Brewers Minor League Link Report (9/7): Mudcats Snap 15-Year Playoff Drought in Thursday’s MILB Sweep!

    Ro Mueller

    Yorman Galindez and Jesus Chirinos led Carolina to a playoff-clinching win, while Jackson Chourio joined the 20/40 club in Biloxi's 18-run barrage. Monte Harrison’s walk-off single capped Nashville’s rally from a six-run deficit and Wisconsin crushed Cedar Rapids.

    Image courtesy of Biloxi Shuckers & Mike Krebs - Jackson Chourio Pictured

    Brewers Video


    As always, you'll find more information about the three departing players in our minor league transactions thread and we wish them all success in future endeavors.

    Game Action:

    Nashville Pre-Game Media Notes
    Final: Nashville 7, Memphis 6
    Box Score / Game Log

    Via the Sounds’ website, game details, and we encourage readers to review the affiliate write-up as part of their Link Report routine: Sounds Erase Six Run Deficit, Walk Off Redbirds

    This is one of those memorable victories which can stay with players for a long time: down 6-0 in the bottom of the 7th inning, 5 ½ games out of a playoff spot with about 15 games to go on the season, the Sounds’ offense finally came alive, starting with a C Brian Navarreto walk, escalating with 1B Abraham Toro’s bases clearing triple and rightfully concluding with right fielder Monte Harrison’s walk-off single. 

    Sounds’ Extras:

    • LHP Robert Gasser (4 2/3 IP, 4 R (3 ER), 7 H, 3 BB, 5 Ks) had a strong first two innings (no runs, 2 Ks, one infield single, one outfield single), before giving up two runs on three hits in the third frame, then another two runs (one unearned) on two hits and two walks in the 4th inning. He’ll look forward to better outings over the final two weeks of the season.
    • While Brewers’ brass obviously knows best, I’ll forever wish that Toro (playing first base in this game) had been given more opportunity to play infield in MLB while having a hot bat, similar to how OF Mark Canha’s bat makes his outfield play tolerable. Toro came through with a game-changing hit on Wednesday, threw out a runner at home in the 4th inning of this game to keep it a 4-0 scoreline, then had the clutch triple with 2 outs in the bottom of the 8th inning to even the score 6-6. Simply put, Mr. Toro knows how to win.
    • Other notes: The Sounds’ patient offense drew 9 walks (three by center fielder Chris Roller, two by Jones, two by DH Josh VanMeter) and seven players collected at least one hit, with Harrison (3-for-5, RBI) having one of his best days of 2023. In the field, two errors (3B Tyler Black, left fielder Jahmai Jones) didn’t help the cause. And two of three bullpen arms conceded runs, with RHP JB Bukauskas (1 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 0 BB, 0 Ks, Win) coming through with a three-up, three-down 9th inning as he aims to earn another shot with the Brewers. 

    Friday’s outlook: RHP Janson Junk gets the start as Nashville seeks a series-clinching fourth straight victory.

    Biloxi Pre-Game Media Notes
    Final: Biloxi 18, Birmingham 1
    Box Score / Game Log

    Via the Shuckers’ website, game details: Shuckers Tear Open Record Books for 10th Straight Win

    Biloxi let it be known far and wide that they intend to chase down Montgomery (winning elsewhere) for the final playoff spot, setting records across the board (runs, hits, etc.) as articulated in the article link above. Every Shucker notched as least one hit during this incredible performance.

    It’s an amazing day when you can strand 14 runners and not be sad about it, as Biloxi went 11-for-29 with runners in scoring position while plating 18 runs. SS Ethan Murray (4-for-5, double, walk, 2 RBIs) reached base five times, while OF Carlos D. Rodriguez (4-for-6, 2 doubles, 2 RBIs), C Wes Clarke (1-for-4, HR, 3 walks, 3 RBIs) and 3B Zavier Warren (3-for-5, HR, walk, 3 RBIs) reached base four times each.

    Catch this and many more video highlights from the offensive barrage at the Shuckers’ Twitter feed. 

    Shuckers’ Extras:

    • Of course, with Carlos F. Rodriguez (6 IP, 1 R, 2 H, 2 BB, 1 HBP, 5 Ks) on the mound, this wasn’t necessarily the day that the team needed offensive records to be broken, but I digress. Rodriguez ran into minor trouble (for him) when the bases were loaded in the 1st inning with big stick Tim Elko (26 homers this year) at the plate, but he only needed four pitches to strike him out swinging.
    • The game was 8-1 when Rodriguez handed over to the bullpen, but let’s not diminish their excellence: LHP Luis Amaya, RHP Ryan Brady and LHP Russell Smith combined on three shutout innings, conceding one hit, one walk and striking out five batters. It’s great to see the bullpen rounding into shape just in time for next week’s season-ending series against Montgomery.
    • The article notes 19-year old center fielder Jackson Chourio (1-for-4, SB) joining the 20-40 club by stealing his 40th base, but doesn’t mention him being substituted a half-inning later. We trust that this was simply a breather for the teenage sensation. 

    Friday’s outlook: RHP Christian Mejias gets the opportunity to lead Biloxi to an eleventh consecutive win, which they need in order to make up the 0.5 game deficit behind Montgomery.

    Wisconsin Pre-Game Media Notes
    Final: Wisconsin 11, Cedar Rapids 6
    Box Score / Game Log

    Via the Rattlers’ website, game details: Rattlers Get a Fast Start to Beat Cedar Rapids

    As always for home games, enjoy extensive video highlights and the insightful post-game podcast.

    Facing 82-46 (now 47) Cedar Rapids, the Timber Rattlers were undoubtedly aware that their early 7-0 lead may not be enough, thankfully adding pairs of runs in the 5th and 7th innings to keep the Kernels at bay. Credit C Matt Wood (2-for-4, 3 RBIs) for contributing in all facets:

    • Singled in two runs to extend the lead to 3-0 with two outs in the 1st inning
    • Threw out a baserunner when Cedar Rapids got two aboard to start the 5th inning
    • When the Kernels cut the deficit to 7-5 in that rough 5th inning, Wood singled in another run in the bottom half to increase the lead back to 8-5 

    Timber Rattlers’ Extras:

    • This was RHP Joseph Hernandez’s (4 IP, 2 R, 3 H, 4 BB, 0 Ks) third High-A start since injury, but the opposition still worked him into deep counts even while trailing big. In all, Hernandez threw 59 pitches as he continues to build up strength, but only 30 for strikes.
    • RHP Stiven Cruz earned the Win, but his outing couldn’t have started worse, with each of the first four batters in the top of the 5th inning reaching base, the last on a home run. Make no mistake, however: Cruz gave his all in battling from there, not conceding hits to any of the next 15 batters he faced, even if five more walks were sprinkled in to ensure high drama.
    • Eight Wisconsin players collected hits in the big offensive day, including three by left fielder Joe Gray Jr. and two by each of SS Eric Brown Jr., right fielder Hendry Mendez and Wood. 3B Brock Wilken added to his hitting streak (now 12 games) while collecting two more RBIs, as we continue to speculate on his possible promotion to AA Biloxi next week (fingers crossed).
    • RHP Tanner Shears wasn’t credited with a Save, despite striking out four of six batters faced to close out the game. That gives the 24-year old 75 Ks in just 48 2/3 innings pitched this year, with a season ERA of 1.48 (although with 42 walks issued). Perhaps we should also be focused on him for potential promotion to Biloxi – or a trip to the Arizona Fall League?.

    Friday’s outlook: RHP Alexander Cornielle starts tonight, as Wisconsin strives to even their final series of the season 2-2.

    Carolina Pre-Game Media Notes
    Final: Carolina 5, Salem 1
    Box Score / Game Log

    Via the Mudcats’ website, game details: Mudcats Win Second Half Title With 5-1 Victory

    Let’s start with the joy of reaching the postseason for the first time in 15 years, with right fielder Kay-Lan Nicasia making the final diving grab: 

    The 5-1 final score doesn’t capture the tension of the game being scoreless through six innings, with both pitching staffs dominating up to that point. 20-year old starting RHP Yorman Galindez (5 IP, 0 R, 1 H, 2 BB, 9 Ks) was sensational, only allowing an infield single and two walks in his five innings of work.

    With so many young, wiry, speed-first players coming through the system, it was fun to see slightly beefier 1B Jesus Chirinos (3-for-4, double, 2 runs) and C Jose Sibrian (1-for-2, 2 HBPs, RBI) get big hits (or an HBP) in the 7th and 8th innings to break the scoreless deadlock and add necessary insurance runs. 

    Don’t forget to enjoy the post-game interview with winning Manager Victor Estevez.

    The win clinches the Carolina League North second half title for the Mudcats, giving them a home playoff game against Down East on Tuesday next week before heading to the Wood Ducks’ home for two games. Victory in that best-of-three series would lead to another best-of-three against the Carolina League South winner. Yes, this means that four wins are required next week to capture the league title. 



    Mudcats’ Extras:

    • RHP Yujanyer Herrera entered in the 6th inning and grabbed the Win, but there was a nervous moment with the game 3-1 with two baserunners on in the bottom of the 7th inning which he escaped via flyout. RHP Chase Costello similarly faced some tension by walking two of three batters in the 8th inning, before Nicasia caught the second out and doubled a runner off base. RHP Bayden Root (just his 7th game as a Brewer) didn’t face any difficulty in retiring all three batters to close out the win.
    • For Carolina, Chirinos has established himself as their most potent bat, collecting the team’s first hit in this game (4th inning single), but that made the end of the 6th inning all the more frustrating when 2B Jadher Areinamo was thrown out attempting to steal third base with Chirinos at the plate in the 0-0 game. Thankfully the Mudcats held firm and Chirinos’ 7th inning leadoff double got the offense going.
    • It was truly a team effort, with seven Carolina players collecting hits, while those who didn’t hit still had key contributions: Nicasia walked and had two key defensive plays, left fielder Jace Avina had two walks, an RBI and a run scored.

    Friday’s outlook: RHP Will Rudy makes tonight’s start, with Carolina aiming to grab a 3-1 series lead.

    We hope that you enjoy the Minor League Link Report. Enjoy Friday’s 4-game Minor League slate, along with the Brewers returning to action in New York.

    Organizational Scoreboard including starting pitcher info, game times, MiLB TV links, and box scores
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    Current Milwaukee Brewers Organization Pitching Stats and Depth

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    With 9 Games remaining in an absurdly tight and competitive playoff chase, it is officially time to celebrate the Shuckers bullpen. I don't know how long it's even been since a worthy celebration, here, but it is overdue:

    Starting at Game 1 of this ongoing win streak (Saturday, August 26th) - a 6-2 victory over already playoff bound Pensacola - we have seen the following collective production:

    32 1/3 IP 
    25 H
    15 BB
    36 K
    2 HBP
    1 WP
    2 Pitch Clock Violations (it's 2023, afterall)
    6 ER (for those of you at home, that's a measley 1.67 cumulative ERA)
    1.2371 WHIP
    10 Holds
    3 Wins
    5 Saves (Robinson, Vennarro, and Lazar)
    0 Losses

    Just absurdly good at the most crucial point in their season. This is deserving of a massive round of applause...they're going to need to keep it going if they want to take this division from the also red hot Biscuits. We see you Shuckers bullpen. And, we salute you.

    George C Scott America GIF by 20th Century Fox Home Entertainment

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