Here's why you should watch the Brewers every night this season
The Brewers may not be in first place this year, but they could still be the must-watch team in the Majors. If you want a game that could end in any way, the Brewers are for you. If you want a game that is never dead, the Brewers are for you. Forget the Kardiac Kids. Call Milwaukee the Breathtaking Brewers; The Brewcarious Crew. They almost did it again on Tuesday night, making the Cardinals go a nail-biting 11 innings to beat them.
You wouldn't expect it. Christian Yelich was placed on the DL after only six (albeit great) games. With Jimmy Nelson injured, Chase Anderson has been the staff ace. Unfortunately, the trio of Jhoulys Chacin, Zach Davies and Brent Suter have combined to give up 24 earned runs in 35 1/3 IP. Ryan Braun is hitting .162 and Domingo Santana has yet to hit a home run. They've been shut out three times this year.
But that belies the Brewers' penchant for late-inning dramatics. If there is a team of destiny in 2018, the Brewers may be it. Below are the five games that prove it. You can also watch them at 1:15 p.m. ET on Facebook against the Cardinals to see if they can do it again.
The Brewers took a 1-0 lead against the Padres on a third-inning RBI single from Yelich and held on to it for for most of the game. But, the Padres came back in the ninth inning as Freddy Galvis singled in Matt Sczur.
It remained knotted into the bottom of the 11th, when the Padres loaded the bases with one out and Chase Headley at the plate. Jeremy Jeffress got the double play -- turning an 83 percent win expectancy moment for the Padres into zero runs. The 12th inning beckoned.
In the next inning, Ji-Man Choi hit a pinch-hit double and came around to score on an Orlando Arcia hit for the victory. Choi is back in the Minors now, with only this hit to his Brewers ledger. If he never plays for the Brew Crew again, he'll be remembered for his role in the Opening Day victory.
The five-run Ninth
The Brewers needed plenty to go right the next night, too. Trailing the Padres, 6-3, the Brewers had an only three percent chance of winning entering the ninth inning. But three singles, an error and a ground out later, the Brewers had cut the lead to one. With runners on the corners and one out, Braun stepped in. Left-hander Brad Hand made a mistake up and out of the zone and Braun absolutely crushed it into the left-field seats for the game-winning runs.
Braun's reaction says it all:
Want to understand that home run from the Padres' point of view? Look at this fan right behind home plate. This is Edward Munch's "The Scream" in motion.
The back-to-back homers
Milwaukee entered the eighth inning trailing the Cardinals, 4-1, with only a 9 percent chance of winning on April 3. They scored two runs, but it still seemed over when Yelich stood in the box in the bottom of the ninth with two outs and two strikes on him.
But this is the 2018 Brewers: Nothing is over until they say it's over. Set off the fireworks because Yelich just went deep.
One pitch later, Braun ended it:
Perhaps most impressive is just how Bernie Brewer even got back to the top of his slide before going down again. That's some serious hustle.
The winning single
Odd bounces just come Milwaukee's way this season. Hernan Perez stepped to the plate with a runner on first and nobody out. It was April 6 and the Brewers were tied, 4-4, with the Cubs in the bottom of the ninth. At the time, Perez had yet to record a hit, and he couldn't have picked a better moment for his first of the season. He dribbled a slow grounder that Kris Bryant raced in to grab, but Bryant's throw sailed wide and then, runners were at the corners.
Enter the soft-hitting Arcia. He already picked up the game-winning hit on Opening Day, and he was back to do it again. The shortstop showed off a great piece of hitting and punched a high-and-outside fastball into right field. Another win for the Unsinkable Molly Brew.
The winning walk
Call it fate, but Arcia seems to wriggle his way into the heart of every big moment. Leading 4-3 on Monday night, and with Corey Knebel on the DL, Matt Albers stepped in for the save. Unfortunately, he gave up three straight singles and put the Brewers in a precarious situation. The right-hander shut the door after only one run scored, but it would force the game into the 10th inning.
Once again -- notice a pattern? -- oddness struck. Greg Holland entered to make his 2018 debut. But the strike zone eluded him. The Cardinals reliever walked four straight batters to give the Brewers the win.
Of the Brewers' six wins this year, five have come with heart-pounding, absurd comebacks. Don't ever give up on the Brew Crew and don't ever change the channel, because this is a team that has made the unexpected almost routine.