Rockies rout Brewers in series finale

6/29/2014

By Michael Hunt

By Michael Hunt

Milwaukee Journal Sentinel

MILWAUKEE (MCT) — Befitting their status as baseball's second-best team, the Milwaukee Brewers have played very few stinkers this year.

Sunday was one of them, with a bullet.

Pretty much everything that could go wrong in a nine-inning timeframe befell the Brewers in their 10-4 loss to Colorado before a capacity crowd at Miller Park.

Milwaukee starter Yovani Gallardo had nothing and gave up three runs in the first inning. And in a bizarre case of reverse karma, the Brewers gave up three runs on one comedic two-error play, just as the Rockies did the previous week in Denver.

"We did it to them, they did it to us," said Brewers third baseman Aramis Ramirez, who began the gruesome three-run play in the fifth inning with an error.

"We just played a bad game. No excuses, a bad game for everybody. It's going to happen. It's a 162-season games. That's a long season. You're going to have days like this. We don't pitch well, we don't play good defense. We didn't do anything right."

The loss broke a four-game winning streak and allowed the Rockies to get out of town with one victory in the four-game series. On the upside, the Brewers, who sat centerfielder Carlos Gomez and shortstop Jean Segura with minor injuries, are still in command of their division with a day off Monday before a two-game series in Toronto.

The Brewers also completed a stretch of 20 consecutive games at 13-7.

Manager Ron Roenicke said he could live with the occasional bad loss, but not the way the Brewers threw Sunday's away.

After falling behind, 5-0, the Brewers came back in the fourth on a homer from Ryan Braun and a double by Jonathan Lucroy to make it a three-run game. Given the strength of his offense, Roenicke was feeling good about the Brewers' chances before a good defensive team channeled the Bad News Bears in the fifth.

"We had a meltdown," Roenicke said.

After consecutive singles, Rockies catcher Wilin Rosario grounded to Ramirez, who misplayed the ball. Newly recalled shortstop Jeff Bianchi, backing up Ramirez, threw the ball home to Lucroy, who then fired the ball over Ramirez's head trying to get Rosario at third. All three runners scored.

"It's tough to see here in day games, but no excuses," Ramirez said. "I should make that play."

Said Roenicke, "You just hate to see that. It changes the ballgame. You get down when you see that. It's not the loss so much that bothers me. It's that type of play when so many things go wrong on one play."

As for Gallardo, the curveball that sets him apart when he is on vanished against the Rockies.

"It was just one of those days, to be honest," said Gallardo. "I've had a pretty good curveball in the other games. Today, I wish I knew where it went. It's one game. You never want to lose a game to begin with, but you've got to stay positive for the next one."

Roenicke said Gallardo's curve was apparent during a good warm-up session.

"He came out and made bad pitches," Roenicke said. "His command wasn't there."

Gallardo's personal meltdown began in the first inning. After getting the first two batters on seven pitches, he walked Justin Morneau and then gave up four consecutive hard hits.

"I just couldn't put away guys, to be honest," Gallardo said. "I'd get to two strikes and leave a pitch out over the plate. They took advantage of it."

The good news is the Brewers will get their first day off in almost three weeks. It could not come at a better time.

"It definitely does, for all of us," Gallardo said. "We played well this home-stand and just got to enjoy the off day and get ready for Toronto."

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