The Brewers came out with a lukewarm start to the second half, winning two games in decisive fashion, and squandering two others in failure all too familiar during the first half of the season.
Sunday’s loss was especially grating because Yovani Gallardo was once again not good enough — despite being our best — to bring home a win. Home Run Derby champ Prince Fielder continued his hot hitting by launching a dinger that — can’t quite tell from the replay… did that… did that just leave Great American Ball Park?
We all talked about the stretch preceding the All-Star break as a defining time for the Brewers. Rolling with fellow playoff contenders such as the Tigers, Twins, Giants, Mets, Cubs, Cardinals and Dodgers was a rough ride for the Crew. Now the real fun starts, and we’ll get a sense if this team can reach a high-water mark of 90 wins, as it plays 23 of its final 70 games against the three teams currently last place in their National League divisions.
It starts tonight with Pittsburgh. The Brewers have beated the Bucs 17 games straight, a winning streak that spans more than a calendar year. It sets a dangerous precedent. The Pirates will certainly have motivation to eek out a win. But the Brewers will start Mike Burns, who the Brewers were able to win behind against the Dodgers — best team in baseball — last Saturday.