The Milwaukee Brewers weren’t able to accomplish much at the plate recently at Miller Park. It’s been a different story in their series at Progressive Field.
The NL Central-leading Brewers look to sweep the three-game interleague set and win their seventh straight over the Cleveland Indians on Wednesday night.
After rallying from a 12-7 deficit to beat the Indians 14-12 on Monday, Milwaukee (36-29) rebounded from a 2-0 first-inning hole Tuesday and posted 12 hits in a 7-5 victory.
The Brewers are batting .355 with eight extra-base hits in the first two games of this series after hitting .226 during a 1-5 homestand that ended with Sunday’s 5-4 loss to the Chicago White Sox.
“It was good to see J.J. get a couple of hits, but overall we did a lot of mundane stuff,” Brewers manager Ken Macha said. “I don’t mean to complain about a win, but (starter) Yovani (Gallardo) was not exactly pitching to contact. We had to get four innings out of the bullpen. The off day on Thursday will be welcome to our relievers.”
Jeff Suppan(notes) (5-4, 4.48 ERA) looks to give the Brewers’ bullpen a break as he tries to win his third consecutive start. In Friday’s 7-2 victory over the White Sox, the right-hander yielded two runs and nine hits over 6 2-3 innings. He also went 2 for 2, including an RBI single in the sixth with the Brewers trailing 2-1.
Suppan is 5-4 with a 4.99 ERA in 12 career starts against the Indians. He will make his first appearance versus Cleveland since May 19, 2002 while with Kansas City.
Cleveland (29-38), which had won its previous three series leading into this set, lost for the third time in four games as it fell to 4-4 on a homestand that ends with this game.
“If you look at the last two nights, there are a lot of things you don’t like to see,” Indians manager Eric Wedge said.
One of those things was Cleveland going 0 for 14 with runners in scoring position before Travis Hafner(notes) hit a two-run homer in the ninth inning Tuesday. Hafner is batting .310 with three home runs and eight RBIs since returning June 5 from a stint on the disabled list with a sore right shoulder.
“It feels a little tired, but overall it feels pretty good,” Hafner said. “I feel like it’s progressing better than it was two weeks ago.”
With Cleveland’s bullpen allowing eight walks and 12 earned runs in eight innings during this series, it’s critical that rookie David Huff(notes) (2-2, 7.39) gives the Indians another extended outing. In Friday’s 7-3 win over St. Louis, Huff struck out five and allowed three runs over a career-high 7 1-3 innings.
The left-hander, who has won his last two starts, didn’t make it past the fifth inning in his first five outings.
“I had pretty much inherited the nickname ‘Five and Dive,’” Huff told the Indians’ official Web site. “So this is huge. Every time out, I’m getting more comfortable and confident. It’s a huge difference right now from where I started.”
Cleveland’s last win over Milwaukee was 5-2 in 10 innings on June 13, 2001.