The Brewers face the Atlanta Braves in Game 2 of the National League Division Series at American Family Field on Saturday afternoon.
Join blog host JR Radcliffe as he brings you live updates from the press box. Be sure to refresh your browser for the newest.
Ballgame. Milwaukee loses, 3-0. The series is now tied, 1-1
Alas, Milwaukee gets two runners on and nobody out in the eighth and ninth but fail to score either time. The offense simply didn’t have it tonight.
Luke Maile grounds into a game-ending double play, and that’s all she wrote.
The Brewers have two runs on 11 hits over 18 innings in this NLDS so far. They are fortunate to have a 1-1 series tie as it heads back to Atlanta.
Was that the last game of the season at American Family Field? Milwaukee needs at least one win Monday at Tuesday at Truist Park in Atlanta to ensure another game in Milwaukee.
The Brewers will need much, much more from the core of its lineup. Kolten Wong, Willy Adames, Eduardo Escobar, Avisaíl García and Christian Yelich are a combined 6 for 36, with just one double and five singles, in the first two games.
ATLANTA 3, MILWAUKEE 0, final
The Brewers have something cooking again in the ninth
The knock on Will Smith has been a penchant for control problems, and after working ahead of Christian Yelich, he walks the first Brewers hitter of the ninth.
Luis Urías then drops a broken-bat single into left, and once again, Milwaukee has two runners on with nobody out. Lorenzo Cain strolls to the plate. Luke Maile and Jace Peterson are next up.
Cain flies out to left, however, and that takes some wind out of the sails.
Brad Boxberger works through the ninth, and Brewers have one last shot
Travis d’Arnaud strikes out for the fourth time today, this time against Brad Boxberger, who then gets Dansby Swanson to pop up on the infield. Former Milwaukee shortstop Orlando Arcia had the chance to be the Braves’ final batter of the night for a second straight game, but he drew a walk instead.
Jorge Soler hit an absolute bomb to the fourth deck but well foul before hitting a pop up on the infield.
Former Brewers pitcher Will Smith, Atlanta’s closer, is headed into the game to close this down.
I’ll say this; if the Brewers pull this off, it’ll be one of the more memorable wins in franchise history.
ATLANTA 3, MILWAUKEE 0, bottom 9
Milwaukee offense sputters and can’t score in eighth
With the American Family Field crowd on its feet, Milwaukee’s heart of the order sputtered against reliever Tyler Matzek.
Willy Adames struck out for the third time today on a pitch up out of the zone. Eduardo Escobar then lofted a fly ball to right field, which moved Peterson to third base. Avisaíl García put up a fight but then struck out for the third time, as well.
Brewers hitters just haven’t had much juice tonight. An opposite-field double and a lot of light contact. Brewers hitters with the platoon advantage tonight are 1 for 20, while those without are 3 for 5 with two walks. Go figure.
Milwaukee is down to its final three outs.
ATLANTA 3, MILWAUKEE 0, top 9
The Brewers offense is trying to claw its way back
Pinch hitter Jace Peterson (not to be confused with previous Braves pinch hitter Joc Pederson) walked leading off the eighth against Tyler Matzek, and Kolten Wong dropped a bloop single into right field.
Two runners on, nobody out, and the 2-3-4 hitters are due to hit.
Wong’s web gem robbed by head-scratching replay ruling
Kolten Wong, playing near shortstop in the shift, made a sparkling play to jump and throw a ball across the diamond to first baseman Eduardo Escobar, who attempted to tag Austin Riley on the way by.
Riley was ruled safe, and though the replay seemed to show the tag was good, replay officials felt otherwise. The crowd was incensed then and even kept booing after the Brewers got out of the inning unscathed.
Aaron Ashby checked into the game to pitch the frame for Milwaukee and struck out Freddie Freeman, got Ozzie Albies to ground out, and then induced a grounder from Riley. After the replay adjudication, Ashby walked Adam Duvall on four pitches but then got Eddie Rosario to pop out.
By the way, it’s Luke Maile behind the plate in place of Piña, who was pulled for a pinch hitter in the last frame. Guessing that enables the Brewers to keep one more right-hander in the lineup for the left-handed closer, former Brewers reliever Will Smith.
ATLANTA 3, MILWAUKEE 0, bottom 8
Fans make some noise in seventh, but Brewers can’t score
The Brewers tried to generate some two-out magic against reliever Luke Jackson, with a sharp single by Luis Urías followed by a four-pitch walk issued to Lorenzo Cain. But it went for naught, and the Brewers still trail, 3-0.
Getting two on brought the crowd to its feet and brought Daniel Vogelbach to the plate as a pinch hitter for Manny Piña, prompting the Braves to turn to left-handed pitcher Tyler Matzek.
Milwaukee countered again with Tyrone Taylor to get the righty-lefty matchup it wanted. Matzek though he had strike three looking, but home plate umpire Mike Muchlinski didn’t pull the trigger, even as Braves players were leaving the field. Instead, Matzek struck Taylor out swinging on the next pitch.
Just like the magical seventh inning in Game 1, Avisaíl García led off, but this time he struck out instead of getting on base against reliever Luke Jackson. Charlie Morton hit García with a pitch last night ahead of Rowdy Tellez’s home run.
Christian Yelich followed with a strikeout of his own.
ATLANTA 3, MILWAUKEE 0, top 8
Braves don’t score (barely) and Max Fried is out of the game
Braves starter Max Fried went six spectacular innings and only threw 81 pitches, but manager Brant Snitker isn’t making the same call he did last night when he let Charlie Morton return for the seventh; he’s pulling his starting pitcher.
Joc Pederson pinch hit for Fried in the top of the seventh and singled against reliever Hunter Strickland, but the Brewers will take it. Jorge Soler sent a ball all the way to the wall, but Christian Yelich brought it in for the final out.
Luke Jackson, who allowed a hit in a scoreless inning of reflief last night, is into the game.
ATLANTA 3, MILWAUKEE 0, bottom 7
Brewers get first extra-base hit of the game, but that’s all
Willy Adames smoked a two-out double into the corner, but Eduardo Escobar struck out to end the frame in the sixth.
Pinch hitter Rowdy Tellez got a warm reception to start the inning but hen popped up to Max Fried, who runs over to make the catch in foul territory on the third-base side of home plate. Kolten Wong then struck out.
Milwaukee has scored on just one swing in 15 innings of this series thus far. And Max Fried is still only at 81 pitches.
It’ll be Hunter Strickland in to pitch the seventh for the Brewers.
ATLANTA 3, MILWAUKEE 0, top 7
Sausage race time, but Brewers have a 3-0 deficit
Woodruff gets the final two outs and his day is going to be over with three runs allowed in six innings. Now it’s up to the bats, with the 9-1-2 part of the order due up, and presumably pitch hitter Rowdy Tellez going first.
Milwaukee’s offense continues to be suspect in the final stages of the 2021 season.
ATLANTA 3, MILWAUKEE 0, bottom 6
Austin Riley takes Woodruff deep and Braves lead 3-0
Austin Riley, quite likely the best NL MVP candidate that most Brewers fans haven’t heard of, launches a home run with one out against Brandon Woodruff in the sixth. Given that Max Fried’s pitch count is still in the 60s, starting to feel like the Brewers aren’t going to have the offense to match the Braves today.
Woodruff had retired nine straight before that home run.
Luis Urías hits one to the wall, but it’s caught, and the Brewers go 1-2-3 again
Milwaukee has yet to put a runner on second base after five meh innings of offense. Luis Urías hit one to the warning track in right that Jorge Soler caught at the wall, followed by a groundout to the pitcher from Lorenzo Cain and the second Manny Piña strikeout of the day.
Brandon Woodruff is potentially out of this game after Rowdy Tellez stepped into the on-deck circle for Woodruff’s spot in the order. Jake Cousins has been warming in the bullpen.
ATLANTA 2, MILWAUKEE 0, top 6
Woodruff has now retired eight in a row
Freddie Freeman hit a screamer that Kolten Wong leaped to catch in the shift, capping a second straight 1-2-3 inning. Woodruff is up to six strikeouts after he punched out Fried and Soler to start the fifth.
But now his teammates have to get him runs, something they haven’t always done for Woodruff starts. There’s a reason a Cy Young candidate has a 9-10 record.
His 2.86 runs scored per nine innings is by far the worst of qualified starters in Major League Baseball this year.
ATLANTA 2, MILWAUKEE 0, bottom 5
Max Fried strikes out three batters in fourth to keep Milwaukee scoreless
Max Fried now has six strikeouts for the game after punching out three of the four batters he saw in the fourth, leaving Milwaukee still behind Atlanta, 2-0.
Avisaíl García, who closed the season with 2 hits in 20 at-bats, recorded his first hit of the NLDS 0-2 pitch, but it was a short-lived success when Christian Yelich struck out looking to end the inning. Willy Adames though he’d worked a seven-pitch walk but was called out on strikes by home-plate umpire Mike Muchlinski for Adames’ second strikeout of the day, and Eduardo Escobar was dispatched on three quick pitches.
ATLANTA 2, MILWAUKEE 0, top 5
Woodruff posts his first 1-2-3 inning
Brandon Woodruff induced an Eddie Rosario groundout, a Travis d’Arnaud strikeout and sharp flyout to right from Dansby Swanson to negotiate a clean fourth. Brewers have their 2-3-4 hitters due up against Max Fried in the bottom half.
ATLANTA 2, MILWAUKEE 0, bottom 4
Brewers go 1-2-3 in third, and Max Fried is dealing
No answer from the Brewers bats, who have now gone 12 innings of postseason baseball and scored on just one swing.
Brandon Woodruff stepped to the plate facing a left-handed pitcher in the postseason at American Family Field, almost recreating the circumstances of his famous 2018 home run against Clayton Kershaw, but Woodruff grounded out to first this time.
Max Fried has thrown just 38 pitches in retiring 9 of 10 Milwaukee batters.
ATLANTA 2, MILWAUKEE 0, top 4
Woodruff retires Riley and Duvall but damage is done
Luis Urías handled back-to-back chances to end the third, including a tough running throw to retire Adam Duvall. But the damage is done, with the Braves taking a 2-0 lead to the bottom of the third. Brewers are fortunate it’s not 3-0 after the Albies drive missed a homer by the narrowest of margins.
ATLANTA 2, MILWAUKEE 0, bottom 3
Braves take a 2-0 lead thanks to Freddie Freeman RBI single, Ozzie Albies double
We haven’t had an extra-base hit that wasn’t a home run in this series until now, but Jorge Soler’s one-out double gives the Braves a runner in scoring position with less than two outs for a second straight inning.
And then, Freddie Freeman’s line-drive single to right brought him home, just ahead of the throw from García in right field. Ozzie Albies follows with an RBI double that hits just off the top of the wall and back into play, scoring a run, but the Braves are going to ask for replay to see if it was a homer.
Just a double. Albies stays at second.
Atlanta has a 2-0 lead, and still just one out in the third. Woodruff ceding hard contact today.
Yelich delivers Brewers’ first hit, but that’s all in the second
Christian Yelich, batting in the No. 5 spot today for Craig Counsell, whipped a base hit through the left side, followed by an encouraging round of applause from the crowd. But that’s all from the Brewers in the second.
Luis Urías hit a ball on the screws, but right at shortstop Dansby Swanson. Lorenzo Cain attacked a first pitch from Fried and flew out to left.
Avisaíl García is now 0 for 4 with three strikeouts thus far in the NLDS (though he was hit by a pitch and scored on the Tellez home run yesterday).
MILWAUKEE 0, ATLANTA 0, top 3
Braves use small ball to threaten, but they don’t score
Eddie Rosario took advantage of the Brewers shift with a perfect bunt down the third base line; all Luis Urías could do was let it roll and see if it trickled foul. It didn’t.
Rosario moved to second on a wild pitch, but that’s where he stayed.
Woodruff struck out Travis d’Arnaud for the second out and elected to pitch to Dansby Swanson with the pitcher on deck (though Fried is a very good batter who hit .273 this year). A groundout to short ended the frame. Still no score.
MILWAUKEE 0, ATLANTA 0, bottom 2
Quiet first inning for Brewers bats
Max Fried’s specialty is generating soft contact, which he did to get an Eduardo Escobar groundout to short as the last out of a 1-2-3 inning.
Kolten Wong struck a ball well but right at center fielder Adam Duvall, and Willy Adames struck out.
MILWAUKEE 0, ATLANTA 0, top 2
Woodruff punches out Riley to end first
Fresh off a remarkable catch by Willy Adames, Brandon Woodruff rediscovers his strike zone and punches out Austin Riley on three pitches to end the frame. The crowd loves it.
Will a first-inning defensive gem loom large for a second consecutive day?
Early command lacking for Brandon Woodruff, but WILLY ADAMES makes a ridiculous defensive play
Just like yesterday, some command issues plaguing the Brewers’ starter. He walks Freddie Freeman after getting Jorge Soler to fly out opening the game, and his first pitch to Ozzie Albies is a ball — meaning he’d thrown seven balls to six strikes early.
Albies, however, flies out when Willy Adames makes a SENSATIONAL stabbing catch running toward the tarp (and then crashing into it). Adames had to run a country mile to chase that down.
First inning web gems and the Milwaukee Brewers. It’s a thing now.
Weeks and Lucroy throw to Sedar and Axford
Former Brewers third-base coach Ed Sedar and reliever John Axford served as catchers while Jonathan Lucroy and Rickie Weeks threw out ceremonial first pitches.
Axford, of course, joins Lucroy in guys who played baseball this year. Axford’s triumphant return to the Brewers was short-circuited when he suffered an arm injury in his first game back. He had a big brace on his right arm today.
I’m pretty sure I saw Sedar in the loge level yesterday? Either him or his lookalike. One of the coolest characters in Brewers history.
National anthem today sung by Ben Tajnai, who became quite the good-luck charm during the Milwaukee Bucks run to the championship this summer.
The rally towels are out as we get ready for baseball.
I spy Jonathan Lucroy and Rickie Weeks
Former Brewers catcher Jonathan Lucroy is down on the field with a young family, wearing a Lucroy jersey. In fact, I think one of his little ones just had to be pulled off the diamond after he started walking along the chalk line and kicking up dirt.
He’s joined by Rickie Weeks, making his second appearance at American Family Field this season. They’ll be the guys to throw out today’s ceremon first pitches.
It’s especially fitting because Lucroy played two games this season for Atlanta, in July, before he was again outrighted. Weeks is already on the Milwaukee Brewers Wall of Honor, and Lucroy will be eligible when he officially hangs up the cleats.
As good as Woodruff has been, Fried might give Atlanta a pitching edge today
The Braves have won 10 of 11 games started by Max Fried, today’s starting pitcher, and the one loss was against the Dodgers and required an eighth-inning rally after Fried departed.
Tee 27-year-old has been on a tear since the start of August, with a 1.46 ERA in 11 starts, and batters are posting just a .213 on-base percentage in that stretch. Needless to say, don’t expect the Brewers to break out of their offensive funk against Fried.
Brandon Woodruff has still been quite good over the past two months, but not anywhere as sharp as Fried. Since the start of August, Woodruff has a 3.37 ERA and batters are reaching base at a .299 clip (which is pretty solid!). He’s only yielded 11 walks over the nine starts but also eight homers.
Fried still has to be pretty impressive to outshine what Charlie Morton did yesterday. Morton was dazzling for six innings but got punished for one of his rare mistakes when Rowdy Tellez homered in the seventh.
The roof will be OPEN today
For the first time since NLCS Game 2 in 2011, the Brewers will play a home playoff baseball game under an open sky. The only other playoff game at this stadium with an open roof was the one directly preceding the last one, Game 1 of the 2011 NLCS.
Oh look, here’s a bunch of photos from yesterday’s 2-1 Brewers win
It’s sort of a shame that a second game happens so quickly to eclipse the residue of the first game, especially when it was so memorable. It’s not like the NBA where you get a three-day break to marinate in it.
Heck I feel like we didn’t even get a chance to reflect on how crazy it would have been if Orlando Arcia had driven in the tying run when he made the final out.
Anyway, here’s a bunch of photos from Game 1.
The roof is open, and really should stay that way
The chance of rain according to my handy weather app is 2% until 9 p.m. when it upticks slightly, and the temperatures should be upper 60s at worst during game time. That sure sounds like a recipe to keep the roof open all game long, but it did close yesterday during batting practice.
I really don’t think that’s happening today, though. It’s still MLB’s call, but they consult with the Brewers and the team typically keeps it open if it feels comfortable that the game will end with temperatures in the 60s. The goal is to keep it consistent all game long.
Yesterday’s temperatures were similar but a touch colder and chance of rain was minimal, but it was still greater than it is today.
Who’s ready for Round 2? No Rowdy Tellez in the lineup today
Last night’s hero gets a rest today, but it makes sense, given that superb left-hander Max Fried is on the mound. Fried has been one of baseball’s best pitchers since Aug. 1, so the Brewers are stacking the lineup with as many righties as possible.
It also means catcher Manny Piña is in the game behind the plate instead of Omar Narváez, who hit the ball as decently as anyone against Charlie Morton last night, but he’s also a lefty bat. The second-half struggles for Narváez have been well documented, and Piña was easily the better hitter down the stretch.
1. Kolten Wong, 2B
2. Willy Adames, SS
3. Eduardo Escobar, 1B
4. Avisaíl García, RF
5. Christian Yelich, LF
6. Luis Urías, 3B
7. Lorenzo Cain, CF
8. Manny Piña, C
9. Brandon Woodruff, P
1. Jorge Soler, RF
2. Freddie Freeman, 1B
3. Ozzie Albies, 2B
4. Austin Riley, 3B
5. Adam Duvall, CF
6. Eddie Rosario, LF
7. Travis d’Arnaud, C
8. Dansby Swanson, SS
9. Max Fried, P