Today is the day, game 162 the final game of the 2018 regular season. For some teams they scratched their stars from starts, because they have nothing to play for. Milwaukee is not one of those teams. They’ll be handing the ball to Gio Gonzalez with a division title on the line. This will be Gio’s fifth start in a Brewer uniform. It will also be the most important. This game is huge and not just for the Brewers, but for Gio as well.
Gio has pitched better in Milwaukee compared to Washington this season. He’s posted a 2.66 ERA in his first four starts with the Brewers as opposed to 4.57 in the nation’s capital. He’s also pitched into the fifth inning in 3 of his first 4 starts here as well. Length will be extremely important for the Brewers today. The Brewers bullpen has been used early and often all season, but especially in September. It’s been short start after short start for the starters. Corey Knebel, Jeremy Jeffress, and Joakim Soria have all pitched in each of the first 2 games of this series. Now if CC needs these guys, there’s no doubt they’ll all be more than willing to take the ball. Josh Hader could also be available today. However, the biggest problem with this is they could potentially play on Monday and Tuesday as well.
Locate the changeup, control the edges, get guys to chase the high fastball, and throw a few good curveballs to plant into hitter’s heads. That’s what Gio needs to think about today. There’s a ton on Gio’s shoulders today. If he can give this team a strong 6 innings and a win, he’ll be looked at as a hero and a great choice. However, if he has a bad start and can’t go deep into the game it becomes a big problem for Gio and the Brewers. A bad start today and Gio may not get a playoff start and this would be a terrible look going into free agency for him. Not only is this get a must get for Milwaukee, but Gio needs to have a strong showing as well. A division title, a fresh bullpen for two potential one-game play ins, playoff starts, and a contract. Those are all the things Gio Gonzalez will be pitching for today. You couldn’t stress enough the magnitude of today’s start for Gio.