Counsell lauds baserunning of Segura, Braun
MILWAUKEE -- Not many aspects of the game have gone right for the Brewers this season, but their efficiency on the basepaths, especially from Jean Segura and Ryan Braun, has been a positive sign for manager Craig Counsell.
Entering Saturday's game against the Phillies at Miller Park, Segura had stolen 17 bases, while being thrown out five times -- a 77-percent clip. Braun, who snagged just 15 bases combined over the past two seasons after putting together back-to-back 30-plus seasons, had been thrown out only twice during his 20 attempts this year.
"Segura and Braun have done a really good job of picking spots to run this year, understanding running at a high percentage," Counsell said.
Other than Segura and Braun, the Brewers don't have another player with double-digit stolen bases in 2015, but being efficient is key to Counsell. Milwaukee's stolen-base percentage this season ranks them in the middle of the pack, and would be in the top 10 if Carlos Gomez and Gerardo Parra's numbers are removed form the equation. Both players were dealt away at the Trade Deadline.
"They've both become very efficient basestealers, which is what we like," Counsell said of Segura and Braun. "Maybe it's not 40 stolen bases, but it's the 20-for-23-type guy. I like that. It's not ... making 12 extra outs on the bases."
Segura's speed came into play during the third inning of Friday's win over the Phillies, where the 25-year-old shortstop scored from second base on Jonathan Lucroy's sacrifice fly to deep center.
That speed needs to remain a significant part of Segura's game, according to Counsell. He let Segura know that he should employ his quickness no matter where he's hitting in the lineup, whether it be leadoff or seventh, which is where Segura was for Saturday's game.
"His speed is important. It's something he has to bring to the table," Counsell said. "Last night, there's not many guys in baseball that score [on a sacrifice fly from second]. It was just good baserunning."