Macha: Heart of the order will hit
Brewers manager Ken Macha insists he’s not worried that the heart of his batting order is in a collective, early-season slump. In fact, Macha found a silver lining.
“They’re gonna hit what they’re gonna hit,” Macha said. “That means they’re getting hot. So I’m not worried; I’m looking forward to them getting hot.”
They’re not there yet. Nos. 3-5 hitters Ryan Braun, Prince Fielder and J.J. Hardy entered this series in Philadelphia hitting a combined .171 (22-for-129). No. 3 hitter Braun was batting .222 and had driven in just two runs outside of his three-run home run on Friday night. Cleanup hitter Fielder was batting .175, though four of his seven hits have gone for extra bases and he was tied for the team lead with seven RBIs. No. 5 hitter Hardy was really struggling, batting .114 (5-for-44) with a .130 on-base percentage.
Braun padded his stats — and gave the Brewers a short-lived lead — in the first inning Tuesday night with a solo home run against Phillies starter Jamie Moyer. Fielder was hit by a pitch before Hardy ended the inning with a fielder’s choice grounder.
Looking for answers about Hardy, Macha compared the shortstop’s spray chart from this season versus last. Macha was wondering if Hardy was pulling everything, but in fact the charts lined up.
“I’m content with J.J.,” Macha said. “He just needs to get some balls to fall in to get him going.”