The floodgates opened on Friday night as the Brewers dumped fourteen runs on the Houston Astros. The Astros scored seven of their own, but could not keep their pitchers from throwing batting practice to the Brewers’ lineup.
Yovani Gallardo, recipient of the Silver Slugger award for the best-hitting National League pitcher, padded his resume for another award, smacking a solo home run in the fourth inning. It’s his franchise-leading ninth career shot.
Gallardo was not sharp on the bump, though, allowing four earned runs in only six innings of work. For the third straight start, Gallardo had control problems, throwing only 69 of his 113 pitches for strikes. He walked one and struck out seven. Gallardo could have easily walked more, as he was behind in the count often and worked two-ball counts to thirteen hitters.
Gallardo did get the win, though, thanks to the Brewers offensive outpouring. Every starter but Fielder had a hit, and Fielder did his own damage with two walks and three runs. Weeks went 1-2 with two walks, and Gomez, Braun, Kotsay and McGehee each had three hits, including three-run shots from both Gomez and Braun; Kotsay and McGehee knocked in two apiece. Betancourt had a two-hit, two-RBI game.
The highlight of the night: a standing ovation for Ryan Braun, who signed a five-year, $105 million deal that will keep him a Brewer until 2020. I was at the game, and it was spectacular to see over 31,000 fans cheering our homegrown star whose contracts have broken the mold. Braun’s first at-bat was delayed a minute or so as everyone cheered.
MLB.com’s Adam McCalvy interviewed Braun after the game. “I had no idea how to respond,” Braun said. “There’s no blueprint, I
really had no idea what to do. I was trying not to get too emotional. I
didn’t want to take away from my routine of the at-bat and I didn’t want
to disrespect the other team.”
In the next at-bat, Braun rewarded the applause with a no-doubt three-run home run to left center field.
“I don’t think I could have scripted it much better,” he said. “It was
pretty cool. Definitely a special night for me individually and a great
night for us as a team.”