Brewers pitchers raking at plate
MILWAUKEE — Facing the Brewers, the No. 9 spot in the batting order is hardly an easy out. Yovani Gallardo reaffirmed that Tuesday night, going 1-for-1 with a solo homer and a walk.
With a .219 batting average, Brewers pitchers lead the National League. Milwaukee’s pitching staff is tied for first with 33 hits and 14 runs. Brewers pitchers also rank first in home runs (3), RBI (14), doubles (8), on-base percentage (.261), slugging percentage (.331), and OPS (.592).
Along with their success, the Brewers staff has even coined a phrase to describe it.
“These guys have got a quote in here in the dugout,” said Brewers manager Ken Macha, “they say, ‘Pitchers rake.'”
While the hurlers’ ability to swing that bat has come in handy quite a bit of late, Macha would like to see them improve on another aspect of the game at the plate: bunting.
The Brewers rank last in the NL with just eight sacrifice bunts, while they have four times as many hits.
“We’ve been working on our bunting,” Macha said. “We’ve got more hits than we do sacrifice bunts. So we’ve been putting some time in on the bunting because eventually we’re going to need to move [a runner] up.”
Still, on the current homestand, Brewers pitchers have been even better at the plate than their season average of .219. More than double that even.
With eight hits in 18 at-bats, the pitching staff had posted a .444 batting average entering Wednesday’s final game of the homestand. Along with that .444 mark, the Brewers have gotten two RBI, five runs, a walk and a home run out of the pitcher’s spot.
Each of the Brewers five starters — Gallardo, Randy Wolf, Dave Bush, Chris Narveson and Manny Parra — has contributed at least one hit while all of them except Bush have either scored a run, driven in a run, or both.
“We have some pretty good [hitting] pitchers,” Gallardo said. “We have a lot of fun up their hitting. Wolfy, Bushie, Narveson and Manny, we take it serious. For certain situations you can only help yourself out. I think that’s what we try to do.
“We joke around out there when we hit BP, but you never know when it’s going to come in handy.”
— Jordan Schelling, Associate Reporter