The Brewers suffered a heartbreaker to end their last week of games, giving up a Steven Souza Jr. home run on August 6th to blow a chance at a series sweep. However, the Twins along with Cincinnati Reds allowed for a great chance to bounce back. Well, at least on the surface. The Crew would lose all four games, both at home and away, against their border rival before taking a 2-to-1 series win against the Reds. Despite a 2-5 week, though, fans are now suddenly optimistic, as it appears the offense (for now) may be clicking again. In the coming series, we’ll see if that trend is here to stay or if it was just a side effect of playing the Reds that many teams have experienced this season.
With that being said, let’s take a moment to look at the week ahead.
The Week Ahead
Upcoming series: vs. Pittsburgh (8/15-8/16) and @ Colorado (8/18-8/20)
Pitching matchups vs. Pittsburgh: Ivan Nova (10-9, 3.87 ERA) vs. Zach Davies (13-6, 4.40 ERA); Gerrit Cole (10-8, 3.96 ERA) vs. Jimmy Nelson (9-6, 3.72 ERA)
Pitching matchups @ Colorado: TBD vs. TBD; TBD vs. TBD; TBD vs. TBD
Rollie Fingers Award for First-Team All-Swagger (player that went out “balls to the wall”)
Winner: Keon Broxton
“I think I got my swagger back” said Jay-Z, as well as Keon Broxton this week (probably). Keon had one of his best weeks of the season this past week, for sure his best since returning to the big leagues after his time in Colorado Springs. After all, two home runs will do that for you. And while 5-for-20 may not seem like much (comes out to a .250 average), a guy who went on a truly awful stretch for a time like Broxton did will take that any day of the week.
The Robin Yount Award for Pure and Utter Dominance (Most Dominant Player)
Winner: Ryan Braun
Going into August 1st, the face of the franchise was hitting just .265 and had fans once again doubting whether the big contract that the club gave him was worth it. Well, his beginning to August has proved the kind of player Brewers fans roared for all those years may still be in there somewhere. Braun enters Tuesday’s matchup having raised his average all the way to .295 in just 13 games. He exploded once again this week for a 15-for-29 clip (.517) with 1 home run and 2 RBI. A date with division foe Pittsburgh as well as the hitters’ haven known as Coors Field, fans can possibly expect Braun’s new-found hitting prowess to continue.
The Ben Sheets Award for Best Heat (Best Pitcher)
Winner: Corey Knebel
There wasn’t much to choose from here, was there? The fewest amount of runs that the Brewers gave up in a game this week was four, leaving a reliever likely to take this spot this week. Not only did Knebel nab his first win in Saturday’s 6-5 extra inning win (in a two-inning effort no less), he also recorded a save to take the series against the Reds on Sunday. Overall, Evil Knebel’s 4 punch outs over 3 innings and key roles in a pair of big victories make him the best pitcher of the week.
AAA: Colorado Springs
Lewis Brinson (Brewers No. 1 Prospect; MLB.com’s #15 overall): .331, 22 2B, 4 3B, 13 HR, 48 RBI, 11 SB (76 games)
Mauricio Dubon (Brewers No. 9 Prospect): .287, 12 2B, 5 HR, 27 RBI, 7 SB (40 games played with CS)
Brett Phillips (Brewers No. 12 Prospect): .318, 22 2B, 10 3B, 17 HR, 71 RBI, 6 SB (91 games with CS)
AA: Biloxi Shuckers
Luis Ortiz (Brewers No. 3 Prospect; MLB.com’s #79 overall): 4-6, 3.98 ERA, 81.1 IP, 72 K, 32 BB, 1.18 WHIP, .216 Opponent AVG
Corbin Burnes (Brewers No. 7 Prospect): 3-3, 2.10 ERA, 64.1 IP, 67 K, 10 BB, 0.92 WHIP, .208 AVG
Jake Gatewood (Brewers No. 18 Prospect): .167, 2 3B, 1 BB, 1 SB (5 games)
A: Carolina Mudcats/Wisconsin Timber Rattlers
Corey Ray (Brewers No. 2 Prospect; MLB.com’s #67 overall): .242, 24 2B, 6 HR, 41 RBI, 21 SB at A Adv Carolina (95 games)
Keston Hiura (Brewers No. 5 Prospect; MLB.com’s #92 overall): .344, 9 2B, 2 3B, 15 RBI, 2 SB at A Wisconsin (23 games)
Lucas Erceg (Brewers No. 10 Prospect): .240, 26 2B, 13 HR, 67 RBI at A Adv Carolina (112 games)
Trey Supak (Brewers No. 16 Prospect): 3-4, 4.83 ERA, 63.1 IP, 52 K, 25 BB, 1.33 WHIP, .249 AVG at Adv A Carolina
Mario Feliciano (Brewers No. 25 Prospect): .242, 14 2B, 4 HR, 32 RBI, 9 SB at A Wisconsin (88 games)