PITTSBURGH – The Brewers score in groups, and they’re about to get better.
Escobar will join a team that has been hitting since the All-Star hiatus. The Brewers have scored at least six runs in seven of their first ten second-half games, including on Wednesday when Avisaíl García took a lead in the first inning and Milwaukee never looked back.
“As we said earlier this year, just give them a little time and they’ll start clicking,” said Houser, who lowered his ERA to 3.69 with 97 2/3 innings on the books. “They’ve proven they have this going right now and it’s great to see.
“If you come out and take the lead early, get a few runs in the first inning, especially as an away team, you can take the lead and build your confidence. That makes you want to come out and keep the score low. “
The early goal caught manager Craig Counsell’s eye as well.
“It’s one of the things we were good at at this park – we hit early, a series of runs in the first inning, and we did it again tonight with another run in the first inning,” Counsell said, got pressures and made the most of it by just really coming up with some big hits. “
They’ve scored so many goals lately that Josh Hader hadn’t played in 11 days before finally reminding everyone that he is still closer to the Brewers by being a six-run lead at the end of the ninth Innings from the bullpen trotted in. Rodolfo Castro’s two-time homer weighed on Hader’s ERA and made history at the same time; With two home runs on Wednesday, Castro was the first player in the AL / NL Modern Era (since 1901) whose first five career hits were home runs.
Previously, Houser pitched five scoreless innings on just 70 fields before a scheduled early exit in favor of Lauer, who was working in the sixth in and out of a base-loaded jam to make 22 straight scoreless innings for Brewers-pitchers against Sunday’s second inning the White Sox.
The Brewers have won each of Houser’s last eight starts and 13 of its 18 starts this season.
“That’s the goal,” he said. “Get out there and try to go as deep as you can and get off the hill with the team in the lead and in the best position to win the ball game. These guys played a great defense behind me all year and set up a few runs for us. We definitely want to continue that. “
The Brewers hit their season high with 18 games over .500 and can beat the three-game series on Thursday with another win over the Pirates behind Freddy Peralta.
Then it’s off to Atlanta, where the trade deadline arrives on Friday at 3 p.m. CT and Escobar is scheduled to join the team. He’s a switch hitter who will play all over the field for the Brewers, and he’s bringing 22 homers and 65 RBIs to the table in 2021.
On paper, it’s another boost to a Brewers offensive that has been doing better in trades since the addition of shortstop Willy Adames and first baseman Rowdy Tellez.
“Part of the early days of the season were just injuries,” Counsell said. “We had a significant number of injuries in April and early May, that was part of that. What [Escobar’s addition] We have answers for a lot of pitchers, we have answers for injuries, we have answers for guys who are struggling, we have answers for challenges. We feel like there are a lot of places we can put up a tough lineup every night.
“And that’s what you want to do. They want to put up a tough line-up every night and I think the Escobar acquisition allows us to do that. “
Speaking of “tough,” when Escobar comes to the Brewers in Atlanta, Counsel will have a harder time filling out a deployment card, even if Christian Yelich and Jace Peterson are on the COVID-19 injured list.
“I think a playoff team, a strong team, a deep team, a good offensive team, have tough choices in their lineups every day and they have people on the bench that you think should be in there”, said Counsel. “That’s what you want. When we looked at a team with Eduardo Escobar, we started to see that.”
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