Tag:Brewers-Diamondbacks
Posted on: October 9, 2011 12:57 am
Edited on: October 9, 2011 11:57 am
 

In victory, Hairston can laugh about out

Chris Young

Jerry Hairston Jr.By C. Trent Rosecrans

MILWAUKEE -- Jerry Hairston Jr. could joke on Saturday about the play Arizona's Chris Young made in the sixth inning of Game 5 of the National League division series -- but only because his team won.

A day after the Brewers' dramatic victory over the Diamondbacks, Hairston was asked about Young's catch that temporarily kept the game tied at 1. 

"Let me tell you something, if we would have lost, I probably wouldn't have slept for a week," Hairston said. "I was just saying please don't let that be the reason we don't win. I mean, he's a great center fielder, he really is. He made an unbelievable play. It's not like a guy who isn't a good outfielder, that's him. He's a great center fielder. He made an unbelievable play. I'm just glad that didn't affect the outcome of the game."

The ball was hit like a rocket -- and everyone expected two runs to score. Instead, the lead runner, Ryan Braun, had to go back to second and even though Young crashed into the wall, the runners weren't able to move up. Hairston was visibly upset, yelling after Young caught the ball.

"When I hit it, I thought it might have a chance to go out. I smoked it, but I know the panels were open, so the wind was blowing in. I thought at least it would short-hop the wall, double, at the very least. I had no idea he'd catch it," Hairston said. "When he stuck his glove up, I thought that was kind of cute, he's making an effort. When it landed in his glove -- I've never cried on the baseball field, but I came pretty close (Friday night). If we would have lost -- I play golf with him in the offseason all the time -- if we would have lost and he made that catch, I never would have heard the end of it. So I'm glad that we won. And he can have the catch. He's an incredible center fielder. He had a great postseason. I'm just glad we won."

However, when Yuniesky Betancourt hit a bloop single to give Milwaukee the lead, Hairston breathed a sigh of relief. And after the team won, he was able to laugh about it.

"At 35, I'm thinking double. … I was thinking at least two RBIs. Kennedy's a great pitcher and we had few opportunities to get him. I felt like we had a chance to get something going, maybe a big inning. It was just a time of the game, sixth inning, 1-1 game, I felt like that would propel us into the big inning. When he made that play, I thought maybe it's on their side.

"I just wanted to find a way to pick up a run. Yuni's been incredible all yea rand he was able to get that big hit for us. That was, I breathed a sigh of relief, but I knew that wasn't the end."

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Posted on: October 8, 2011 7:21 pm
Edited on: October 9, 2011 12:55 am
 

Four clinchers for Brewers' Counsell

Craig Counsell

By C. Trent Rosecrans

MILWAUKEE -- You know in the movie Forrest Gump where the titular character keeps showing up in some of the biggest points of recent American history? Well, Craig Counsell may be a little like Forrest Gump.

Friday night he was there again in Game 5 of the NLDS when Carlos Gomez scored the winning run on Nyjer Morgan's 10th-inning single and it was the fourth time in his career he had been on the field for a walk-off winner in the final game of a postseason series.

The first, of course, was in 1997 when he scored on Edgar Renteria's single to give the Marlins a 3-2 victory in Game 7 over the Cleveland Indians.

Craig Counsell

The second came in 2001 as a member of the Diamondbacks when Arizona beat St. Louis in Game 5 of the NLDS. Counsell was on deck when Tomy Womack's single scored Miguel Bautista to send Arizona to the NLCS -- "I was on deck, so I was the first one to get the hug on that one," Counsell said.

 

The third was later that fall, when Counsell was on first base after being hit by a pitch when Luis Gonzalez singled in Jay Bell to give Arizona a Game 7 victory over the Yankees.

 

"It's good fortune," Counsell said. "To just be a part of four games like that -- that's the point of it. To be a part of, play in, those four games -- you can look at that and be pretty content with your career."

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Posted on: October 7, 2011 11:06 pm
Edited on: October 7, 2011 11:35 pm
 

Morgan's strange journey from villain to hero

Nyjer Morgan

By C. Trent Rosecrans

The most dramatic turnaround of 2011 wasn't the Arizona Diamondbacks -- they were close, but not quite it -- instead, it was the guy who ended the Diamondbacks' season, Brewers center fielder Nyjer Morgan.

For all the T-Plush love that's been spread over the last couple of months, it's easy to forget how 2010 ended for Morgan. The last month-and-a-half of the 2010 season included an eight-game suspension, a $15,000 fine, incitement of a benches-clearing brawl, a clothesline from the Marlins' Gaby Sanchez in said brawl, had another suspension that was ultimately rescinded, was called out by his manager after running over Cardinals catcher Bryan Anderson, called out his manager, was benched and also ran over Marlins catcher Brett Hayes and was tagged out when a slide would have won the game. Yeah, it was a rough 2010. 

Brewers 3, Diamondbacks 2

And 2011 didn't start out too hot, either. It's easy to forget now, but Morgan started spring training with the Nationals. He was a target in spring when Marlins pitcher Ricky Nolasco hit him in a spring training game and that drew the ire of Morgan, who didn't charge the mound, but took his base. He got in another altercation with the Cardinals before he told a reporter he felt he was on his way out of Washington. That upset then-Nationals manager Jim Riggleman, but it turned out to be reality, as two days later he was sent from the Nationals to the Brewers in exchange for minor-league infielder Cutter Dykstra.

Even when he got to the Brewers, he had a struggle of a different kind, with two disabled list stints in the first two months of the season -- one for a deep thigh bruise and another for a broken middle finger. He also had to share playing time with Carlos Gomez once he got back.

In Milwaukee, though, he endeared himself to the home fans with his intensity and personality, as well as his Twitter precense (@The RealTPlush). 

While it hasn't been all roses in Milwaukee-- there was an overly "aggressive" celebration in San Francisco and a dustup with Cardinals starter Chris Carpenter and subsequent Twitter "insults" to the Cardinals and Albert Pujols.

But in the end -- or at least after the NLDS -- Morgan is the team's emotional leader on a team with two legit MVP candidates.

"He's just -- he's a joy to have, I'll tell you," Brewers manager Ron Roenicke. I don't care about all the little issues we have. This guy, I love him on this team. I like him as a really nice young man. He came through big, again, when we needed him."

Morgan had the winning hit in Friday's Game 5 over the Diamondbacks, driving in Gomez in the 10th. He was front and center in the team's celebration (and in the FCC's 'to do' list), but he's also a major reason the Brewers are going to play for the right to go to the World Series.

After, Morgan even reflected on his journey from Public Enemy No. 1 to Milwaukee hero.

"I mean, it's a lot. Just everything that I've had to overcome. Just the stuff that people go out there and perceive about me," Morgan said in the post-game news conference, while wearing a Brewers' branded Army helmet. "And just everything that -- all my haters. I just wanted to show them that I can play this game. Even though I've got a fun, bubbly personality and everything like that, I still come to win and I'm a winner."

For everything you can say about Morgan, on Friday, at least, you have to give him that.

 


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Posted on: October 7, 2011 10:08 pm
Edited on: October 8, 2011 2:01 am
 

Nyjer Morgan drops two f-bombs on TBS

By Matt Snyder

Full Playoff Coverage
Nyjer Morgan aka "T-Plush" has been quite the polarizing figure this season. He's wildy popular in Milwaukee and otherwise seems to be pretty hated by opposing fan bases -- namely Cardinals fans due to his little brush with Chris Carpenter.

Friday night, he added another chapter both for the lovers and the haters. He picked up the series-winning single up the middle. And then he went f-bomb on TBS, multiple times.

Morgan was just off the camera when field reporter Sam Ryan looked to get an interview. You could faintly hear Morgan yell, "(expletive) yeah!"

Most people probably weren't too worried about that. But then he got up close with Ryan for an interview and clearly said "(expletive) yeah, (expletive) yeah!" into the microphone.

And non-Brewers fans went crazy on Twitter.

So the saga of T-Plush continues. He's now more beloved by Brewers fans and more hated by many opposing fans.

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Posted on: October 7, 2011 9:23 pm
 

Eye on Photos: Brewers defeat D-Backs in NLDS



By Matt Snyder


The Milwaukee Brewers have advanced to the NLCS for the first time in club history (note: They've been to the World Series, but that was when they were in the American League) after defeating the Arizona Diamondbacks on the NLDS. Check out the pictures of the series.

Click on any photo below to enlarge.

Even for baseball, Milwaukee is all about tailgating. Brats, burgers and beer are the bare essentials. (Getty Images)
Yovani Gallardo thanks Ryan Braun for throwing out a runner at home in the first inning of Game 1. (Getty Images)
Prince Fielder is a bit fired up after his Game 1 home run. (Getty Images)
Zack Greinke struck out seven in the Brewers' Game 2 win, but he needed help, as he allowed four runs in five innings and took a no-decision. (Getty Images)
This is the Brewers' celebratory "beast mode" pose, done here by Ryan Braun. (Getty Images)
Nyjer Morgan ... feels like he needs a chalk outline, huh? (Getty Images)
Great shot of a Justin Upton broken bat. (Getty Images)
Josh Collmenter has an odd delivery, but it got the job done for the D-Backs in Game 3. (Getty Images)
Paul Goldschmidt is rather giddy after he broke Game 3 wide open with a grand slam. (Getty Images)
So much for a home-field advantage. (Getty Images)
MLB commissioner Bud Selig throws at the first pitch at Game 5. He even wore his mitt! (Getty Images)
No, he doesn't want a hug. That's beast mode again. (Getty Images)
Chris Young had a big series for the D-Backs. Pictured here is him crossing home plate after his second homer of the series. (Getty Images)
Here's the very close call in Game 4, and it's evident the out call was the correct one. (Getty Images)
The Brewers took a 1-0 lead in Game 4, but it didn't hold long -- as Ryan Roberts hit a grand slam in the bottom of the first. (Getty Images)
Justin Upton got the D-Backs on the board first in Game 5 ... and flahsed The Cobra. (Getty Images)
Chris Young saved two runs with an incredible over-the-shoulder catch in the sixth inning of Game 5. (Getty Images)
Of course, Yunieskey Betancourt followed with a big two-out single to give the Brewers a 2-1 lead. (Getty Images)
Willie Bloomquist lays down a safety squeeze to score the tying run in the ninth, giving John Axford a very rare blown save. (Getty Images)
Nyjer Morgan reacts after getting the series-clinching hit to send the Brewers to their first-ever NLCS. (Getty Images)

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Posted on: October 7, 2011 8:58 pm
Edited on: October 7, 2011 9:46 pm
 

Instant Reaction: Brewers 3, Diamondbacks 2

Nyjer Morgan

By C. Trent Rosecrans
 

Hero: Nyjer Morgan scored the Brewers' first run and drove in the last. His one-out single up the middle in the 10th inning gave Milwaukee its first postseason series victory since 1982. With Carlos Gomez on second, Morgan singled up the middle and there was no chance for the Diamondbacks to get the speedy Gomez. Morgan scored the team's first run in the fourth when he tagged up on Jerry Hairston Jr.'s popup to shallow right that was caught by second baseman Aaron Hill. It was a heads-up piece of baserunning, realizing the second baseman couldn't get a throw home in time.

Brewers 3, Diamondbacks 2

Goat: J.J. Putz is a closer, and he wasn't in line to close, but he needed to hold the game for the Diamondbacks in the 10th inning. Instead, he gave up a single to Gomez and then another to Morgan to end the Diamondbacks' season. Putz had gone 17 2/3 innings without giving up a run and finishes the season having converted his last 24 save opportunities. It's tough to call anyone a goat in such a great game, but Putz is about as close as it gets here.

Turning point:  Gomez's stolen base in the 10th erased any shot of Putz getting to face Ryan Braun or Prince Fielder without a runner in scoring position. With the speedy Gomez at second, there was doubt he could score on any hit to the outfield.

It was over when … When the ball got past Putz -- who tried to deflect the ball with his foot. Once it got by him, shortstop Willie Bloomquist had no shot. It was obvious it was going to get in the outfield and Gomez would score.

Next: The season is over for the Diamondbacks, while the Brewers move on the National League Championship Series to face the winner of the Cardinals-Phillies Game 5.

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Posted on: October 7, 2011 6:17 pm
Edited on: October 7, 2011 6:25 pm
 

Upton continues Diamondbacks' homer barrage

Justin Upton

By C. Trent Rosecrans

The Brewers have the reputation as a big, lumbering slugging team -- and much of that probably comes from the image of Prince Fielder and his bombastic blasts. But Arizona has counted on the long ball more than Milwaukee in the National League division series -- at least so far.

NLDS Game 5

After Justin Upton's solo shot in the top of the third of Game 5 off of Yovani Gallardo, the Diamondbacks have tagged Brewer pitchers for 10 homers in the series, with homers accounting for 17 of the team's 24 runs so far in the series.

All six of the Diamondbacks' runs at Miller Park have come on home runs.

Milwaukee led the National League with 185 homers in the regular season, with Arizona's 172 homers the fourth-most in the league.

Friday's homer was Upton's second of the series, he also homered in Game 2. Five different Diamondbacks have homered in the series and of those five, all but Aaron Hill have more than one homer in the series. Chris Young has three -- including two in Game 3 -- with Paul Goldschmidt, Ryan Roberts and Upton all hitting two.

No Brewer, on the other hand, has hit more than one homer in the series, as Ryan Braun, Carlos Gomez, Corey Hart and Fielder have all homered.

Follow the action live on CBSSports.com's GameTracker

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Posted on: October 7, 2011 10:22 am
Edited on: October 7, 2011 1:35 pm
 

NLDS Game 5 preview: Braun to play on holiday

Ryan Braun
By C. Trent Rosecrans

Diamondbacks vs. Brewers, Miller Park, 5:07 p.m. ET on TBS

Diamondbacks Brewers
No. Name Pos No. Name Pos
1 Willie Bloomquist SS 1 Corey Hart RF
2 Aaron Hill 2B 2 Nyjer Morgan CF
3 Justin Upton RF 3 Ryan Braun LF
4 Miguel Montero C 4 Prince Fielder 1B
5 Paul Goldschmidt 1B 5 Rickie Weeks 2B
6 Chris Young CF 6 Jerry Hairston Jr. 3B
7 Ryan Roberts 3B 7 Yuniesky Betancourt SS
8 Gerardo Parra LF 8 Jonathan Lucroy C
9 Ian Kennedy RHP 9 Yovani Gallardo RHP

One of the more famous stories in American sports history is that of Sandy Koufax refusing to play on Yom Kippur. Koufax, who is Jewish, decided not to pitch Game 1 of the 1965 World Series because it fell on the Jewish holiday, which is also known as Day of Atonement and is the holiest of day of the year in the religion. It is traditionally observed by a 25-hour period of fasting and intensive prayer.

Yom Kippur begins tonight at sundown and perhaps the most visible Jewish athlete in American sports has what could be the biggest game of his life, as Brewers outfielder Ryan Braun prepares for Game 5 of the National League division series against the Arizona Diamondbacks. A win, and Braun will advance in the playoffs for the first time in his career. Braun is a big part of the Brewers' lineup, he's a potential MVP and is hitting .467/.529/.867 with three doubles and a homer, driving in four in the series. 

The game is scheduled to being at 4:07 p.m. local time in Milwaukee, so the game could finish before the scheduled 6:23 p.m. setting of the sun. But that is unlikely to be an issue anyway. The Brewers faced a similar situation in 2007 and the then-rookie Braun said he would play regardless.

"I am half Jewish, and I am not Orthodox," Braun told MLB.com in 2007. "So I never grew up celebrating the holidays. I'm going to play."

In addition to Koufax, another famous Jewish baseball player chose not to play on Yom Kippur, when Hank Greenberg played on Rosh Hashanah, but not on Yom Kippur during a Tigers pennant race in 1934.

What's interesting to me is the reactions -- in 1934 Greenberg was bashed by the Detroit press for putting himself over the team. In 1965 Koufax was praised for sticking to his ideals and being true to himself. In 2011, it's not really an issue for Braun -- and that's OK. I think the interesting thing is the different reactions based on the different times.

I don't for a moment want it to be interpreted as me judging Braun for playing -- it's his decision and his alone to judge. He's doing what he feels is right, and as a non-practicing Jew, why should he step aside? I'm sure someone in the comments will say I'm judging him -- and I'm the last person who can judge another man's religious convictions -- good, bad or indifferent. I've worked on every holiday known to man, from Christmas Day to Arbor Day -- and I usually volunteer. To me, it's just interesting to see the changes we've made in a society as far as this issue is concerned, and use Braun as a way of looking back at Greenberg and Koufax and admiring what they did in their own time.

LINEUPS

Lineups have yet to be released

PITCHING MATCHUPS

Kennedy vs. Brewers: Kennedy was a little worse than average in Game 1, allowing four earned runs on eight hits in 6 2/3 innings in the Diamondbacks' loss. The big blow was Prince Fielder's two-run, two-out homer that chased Kennedy in the seventh inning. Fielder is 4 for 12 in his career against Kennedy with a double and two homers and six strikeouts.

Gallardo vs. Diamondbacks: Game 1 came down to Gallardo's mastery of the Diamondbacks, as Gallardo held Arizona to four hits and one run, striking out nine over eight innings. Arizona threatened in the first inning of Game 1, but Willie Bloomquist was thrown out at the plate by Ryan Braun for the inning's second out and then Gallardo retired the next seven batters he faced. After asking his only batter of the game in the fourth, he retired his next eight. By the time Ryan Roberts homered in the eighth, Milwaukee led 4-1 and the Brewers were in control. Counting his Game 1 performance, Gallardo is 6-0 with a 1.18 ERA in his career against Arizona.  

NOTES

NLDS Game 5
  • Like the first four games of the series, the roof will be closed for Friday's Game 5 at Miller Park. The Brewers are 29-12 with the roof closed this season (including the first two games of the series) and 30-12 with it open.
  • The home team has won every game in this series, making it the only series in the division series dominated by home teams. The Brewers, of course, had baseball's best home record in the regular season, going 57-24.
  • Brewers second baseman Rickie Weeks is just 1 for 15 in the series, tripling in the Brewers' Game 2 victory at Miller Park.
  • Brewers closer John Axford saved both Brewers wins and hasn't allowed a hit in his two innings, walking two.
  • Zack Greinke will be available out of the bullpen if Gallardo struggles, manager Ron Roenicke said during Thursday's news conference.
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