Game 1 -- Blue Jays 9, Brewers 4
The Jays tagged Brewers starter Adrian Houser with five runs in the top of the second, leading off the inning with six straight base hits before Houser worked out of the jam. Houser recovered and worked six innings on the night, and while not a quality start, eating up six innings saved manager Craig Counsell from having to use up a bullpen in the first game of an important three-game set. Talk about trying to find a silver lining.
Trevor Kelly surrendered two home runs and three earned in his inning of work, bringing his total to seven home runs allowed on the season in just sixteen innings of work. Peter Strzelecki worked two innings, allowing a run, with his ERA sitting at an even 4.00 after his outing, and was sent back to Nashville, with Kelly (somehow) maintaining a spot on the Milwaukee roster.
Tyrone Taylor did sock his eighth home run of the season, a solo shot, in the seventh inning. Taylor's recent mini hot streak has seen him get his OPS back over .720 and push his RBI total to third on the team.
Adrian Houser dropped his record to 4-8 on the season.
Game 2 -- Brewers 5, Blue Jays 4
With Corbin Burnes on the mound, and the offense staking him to a five-run lead by the end of the third inning, this one looked like the Crew was going to cruise to an easy win. In the end however, the Brewers had to sweat out a close one as the Jays slowly climbed back in and made it a one-run game in the end.
Tyrone Taylor started the Brewers off with an RBI single in the first. In the bottom of the second, Willy Adames had an RBI base knock, and Andrew McCutchen pushed it to 4-0 with his sixth big fly of the season.
McCutchen has pretty quietly put up some decent numbers after an admittedly bad start to the season. Standing at a .684 OPS after sitting in the .550 range five to six weeks ago has to make the Brewers feel a bit better about the investment and hopefully he can continue to put up the kind of numbers he's put up for the last month for the rest of the season.
In the bottom of the fourth, Mike Brosseau, freshly returned from the IL smashed his fourth home run of the season. Brosseau and his .843 OPS bench bat are a nice addition for a team that has struggled to score runs consistently.
Burnes pitched scoreless into the fifth inning until the dangerous Blue Jays lineup caught up with him. Matt Chapman hit a solo home run and Cavan Biggio drove in a run with an RBI groundout. Burnes worked further into the eighth inning when he gave up another solo home run to Bo Bichette.
At 7 2/3 innings of work, Burnes was relieved by Devin Williams, who has been unscored on in his last eighteen appearances. Williams struck out Alejandro Kirk to end the inning and send the Brewers to the ninth with a two-run lead.
Josh Hader came in to close things out and struck out the first two batters, then gave up a double and an RBI single. With the tying run now at the plate, Hader induced a game ending ground out and made a winner of Burnes. The earned run was just the third allowed by Hader on the season as we near the halfway point.
Burnes record moves to 6-4, and the save for Hader was his 22nd, against one blown save. The Brewers held serve with the Cardinals, and they remain tied for first, going into the series finale
Game 3 -- Brewers 10, Blue Jays 3
Brewers emergency starter Chi Chi Gonzalez was slapped for three runs in the top of the first, and it looked like it was going to be a long day for the Brewers and fans. However, in the bottom of the first, the Crew and offense struck back.
A two-run blast from Rowdy Tellez got the Brewers back within a run. Followed up by an Omar Narvaez RBI double, the game was knotted at three after the first inning. Heading into the second inning, the Brewers proceeded to pour it on.
New centerfielder Jonathan Davis started it off with an RBI infield single. Christian Yelich followed up by knocking a run in with an RBI groundout. With the Brewers up a pair, Adames struck next with an RBI single to make it 6-3. To cap the scoring in the second, Tellez came up and added another pair of RBI.
Gonzalez pitched four innings for the Brewers today, allowing the three runs in the first. Jandel Gustave pitched a pair of innings to pick up the win, giving up just a pair of hits. Trevor Gott returned from the IL as well, pitching a scoreless inning. Overall, the Brewers pen threw five scoreless today, and given the large lead the offense provided, Counsell never needed to turn to his lockdown trio of Boxberger, Williams or Hader.
Gustave picks up the win, his first of the season against no losses. The Brewers took a one game lead in the division as the Cardinals fell to the Cubs this afternoon.
With Hunter Renfroe going back on the IL, Davis will get at least a little bit of a longer look in Milwaukee as well. While he's never put up stellar numbers at the MLB level, he's also never had more than a handful of plate appearances in a single season. It will be interesting to see how Counsell continues to use Davis and what kind of move or moves the Brewers may make depending on the expected length of Renfroe's absence.
Up next for the Crew is a day off on Monday, followed by a three-game series at the tough Tampa Rays, as the Brewers continue to fight the Cards for the top spot in the NL Central.
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