Series Recap: Giants at Brewers
Ben Sheets is off to a hot start this season. With his complete game shutout on Sunday, he has not allowed a run in 15 1/3 innings this season.
Gabe Kapler and Ryan Braun hit home runs on both Saturday and Sunday. Kapler has gotten off to fast starts before only to fade later in the season, but if he can sustain a hot April, that will be a nice stop-gap until Mike Cameron returns from his suspension.
The Brewers have five everyday players batting over .300. It is early but it's nice to see several guys having early season success.
Prince Fielder is batting .364 but only has two extra base hits and no home runs thus far. Luckily, Prince doesn't need to hit 50 home runs a year to be successful, but he did spoil the fans last season into having high expectations for him in the power department.
JJ Hardy is still only hitting .105 with only one extra base hit. Hardy did start to look more comfortable at the plate on Sunday drawing a walk and hitting a double to drive in his first run of the year.
Bill Hall had a great Opening Day at Miller Park on Friday but still had five strikeouts for the series against the Giants. His 11 K's on the season is more than double of any other Brewers' player and he needs to cut that number down. I'll say it in every series recap this season until he starts doing it!
Obviously there isn't too much to be upset about after a sweet and a 5-1 start. So you can put this in the category of nit-picking.
Carlos Villanueva and Manny Parra both went 5 1/3 innings in their first starts this season. CV gave up two runs and struck out six while Parra also gave up two runs and struck out eight while taking a no-hitter into the sixth inning.
I was happy to see that both young pitchers looked well in their season debut, but over the long-term this season we need more from them. They need to get through six innings as much as possible to limit over-use on the bullpen. The rotation ran into this problem last season due to overwork.
I do think that they can work it out and more often than not they will be just fine. It's just something for Crew fans to keep in the back of their minds early on in the season.
A nice sweep over a bad team. JJ and Billy still need to play like they are capable of and Prince needs to start 'hulking up'. Next up will be the Reds. Milwaukee fans PLEASE boo Francisco Cordero at every opportunity possible. Remember, all he asked for last season was a competitive offer to stay in Milwaukee. He proceeded to turn down a 4-year $42 million offer from the Brewers only to sign a 4-year $46 million deal from the Reds.
After the Cubs series, I was happy with a series win. Going into the series with the Giants, anything less than a sweep would have been a disappointment. The Giants are in a state a flux and just not very good right now. If the Brewers are going to be a playoff team, these are the type of things they need to do to attain that goal.