#451181858 / gettyimages.com Some things to read while waiting for it to come back. It took 16 innings and well over five hours, but the Milwaukee Brewers picked up their second consecutive loss on Tuesday night. Ryan Zimmerman’s two-run home run in his seventh at bat was the difference as the Washington Nationals emerged victorious, […]

Some things to read while waiting for it to come back.

It took 16 innings and well over five hours, but the Milwaukee Brewers picked up their second consecutive loss on Tuesday night. Ryan Zimmerman’s two-run home run in his seventh at bat was the difference as the Washington Nationals emerged victorious, 4-2, Derek Harvey of Brew Crew Ball has the recap, if you fell asleep.

If you stayed up late to catch the final innings and went to bed disappointed, you weren’t the only one. Here’s Carlos Gomez on the loss:


Mike Fiers picked up the loss on Tuesday after allowing two runs on four hits over four innings. He also pitched on Monday, and @CaitlinSwieca notes that he’s the seventh pitcher in baseball this season to throw 50 or more pitches on zero days of rest. He’s the first Brewer to do it since Tyler Thornburg last July.
 
The Brewers have scored just two runs over 25 innings in the first two games of the Nationals series, and Michael Hunt of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel has a look at some of their poorer at bats. It’s worth noting that Nationals pitchers have a 2.96 ERA on the season, easily the best in all of baseball. They’ve also allowed baseball’s fewest home runs (47 in 76 games) and are tied for the game’s lowest walk rate (2.5 per nine innings). Closer Tyler Clippard recently told James Wagner of The Washington Post that they have the best starting rotation in Nationals history.

With that said, if the Crew had hung on for one more inning the tone of the game might have changed a bit: Nationals first baseman Adam LaRoche had reportedly been told to get ready to pitch if the game remained tied heading to the bottom of the 16th. Apparently Washington manager Matt Williams would have preferred to use a position player to pitch over using his closer in a non-save situation, which is mind-boggling.

Even if the Brewers are struggling a bit, Mike Bauman of MLB.com has a reminder that the sky isn’t falling yet. They still enter play today with the National League’s best record and have spent about two and a half months in sole possession of first place in the NL Central.

Mark your calendar today to meet Kyle Lohse at Legends of the Field’s Delafield location on Thursday, July 10, from 6-7 p.m. Click here for more information on this and other upcoming events.
 
Other notes from the field:

  • Tuesday’s game was the first time the Nationals have played 16 innings since moving from Montreal to Washington before the 2005 season. Overall, it was tied for the 14th-longest game in their franchise history.
  • It was also the longest game played by the Brewers since a 1-0, 17-inning win over the Angels in 2004 and tied for the 12th-longest game in Brewers franchise history.
  • This game tied the record for the longest contest in Miller Park history by time at five hours and 22 minutes (h/t @MikeVassallo13).
  • The two teams combined to throw 485 pitches (h/t @CaitlinSwieca).
  • Yovani Gallardo allowed a single run on four hits over six innings, and @Alecdopp has a look at how his pitch velocities compared to league averages.
  • Auburndale, Wis., native Jordan Zimmermann also pitched six innings and allowed two runs, but received a no-decision after leaving the game in line for a loss.
  • The Polish won the first Sausage Race, and by the look of this picture, I’m guessing the Brat won the second one in the 12th.
  • Mississippi Matt Smith of NotGraphs has a recap of Tuesday’s game in the style of a World Cup broadcaster.

The Brewers may have stayed up late last night, but they’re still getting up early this morning to be ready to wrap up the Nationals series at 1:10 p.m. Marco Estrada will take on Stephen Strasburg in the finale, and Caitlin Sweica has the MLB.com preview.

Today’s lineup will likely be out soon, and don’t be surprised if Ryan Braun isn’t in it. Braun was on base three times and drove in both Brewers runs on Tuesday night but is still hitting just .202/.262/.309 (batting average, on-base percentage, slugging) in his last 21 games.

Aramis Ramirez didn’t play all 16 innings Tuesday night, but he also could get the day off today in a day game after a night game. Ramirez turns 36 today but his bat has still been very good when he’s been in the lineup this season, and Nathan Petrashek of Cream City Cables has a look at the possibility that the Brewers could exercise his contract option for 2015.

Zach Duke will also likely get the day off today after pitching a pair of scoreless innings against one of his former teams. Duke has allowed just one run in 11 outings in June, and Bill Ladson of MLB.com has a look at how he may have turned his career around since moving into a relief role.

The Brewers have already lost a series against another division leader this week, but how do they stack up against their fellow playoff contenders overall? Ben Tannenbaum of The Brewers Bar looked around baseball and said they “seem capable of hanging with” baseball’s best teams.

The Brewers are 15 games over .500 despite a less-than-scintillating start from top offseason acquisition Matt Garza, although he’s looked better lately and has his ERA down to 4.01. He made Grant Brisbee of SB Nation’s list of 10 regrettable free agent contracts from this winter, but I’m pretty sure the Brewers would still opt to keep him if given the option to back out now.

In the minors:

  • The Brewers’ U.S.-based affiliates went 2-3 Tuesday night, and one of the wins came from Helena, where the rookie Brewers scored four runs in the sixth inning to top Missoula 4-3. Brad Krause of Miller Park Prospects has short recaps from all of the day’s action.
  • Shortstop Orlando Arcia also had a big day for Brevard County, picking up the first five-hit game of his professional career in a 10-4 win over Lakeland. Teddy Cahill of MLB.com has more on the accomplishment.
  • Congratulations are due out this morning to Brevard County pitcher Jorge Lopez, selected to represent the Brewers in the All-Star Futures Game. Lopez, whom the Brewers selected in the second round of the 2011 draft, is still only 21 and has a 3.00 ERA in 13 starts for the Manatees. The last two Brewers minor leaguers to appear in the game were Jimmy Nelson and Tyler Thornburg, so Lopez is in good company.
  • Jay D of Reviewing the Brew has a look at top prospect Tyrone Taylor’s 2014 season to date.
Around baseball:

Mets: Placed catcher Taylor Teagarden on the DL with a hamstring strain.
Phillies: Signed outfielder Grady Sizemore to a minor league deal and placed catcher Wil Nieves on the DL with a quad strain.
Rangers: Designated first baseman/outfielder Brad Snyder for assignment.
Rockies: Are expected to place catcher Christian Bergman on the DL with a hand fracture.
Royals: Designated pitcher Donnie Joseph for assignment.
Yankees: Released reliever Heath Bell.

Let’s go around the NL Central:

  • The Cardinals were unable to take advantage of the Brewers loss, falling 10-5 to the Rockies on Tuesday. Starting pitcher Shelby Miller left the game in the third inning with back spasms and is day-to-day. The win snapped Colorado’s seven-game losing streak.
  • The Pirates are back over .500 after a 6-5 win over the Rays. Pittsburgh outfielder Starling Marte left the game in the fifth inning, though, after taking a knee to the head while sliding into second base.
  • The Reds are back at .500 after a 7-3 loss to the Cubs, but catcher Devin Mesoraco tied a franchise record by homering in his fifth consecutive game. He’s raised his batting line to .320/.387/.667 and has 14 home runs on the season. Jake Arrieta carried a perfect game into the seventh for Chicago.
  • The Brewers, as you likely know, lost 4-2 to the Nationals in 16 innings.
Here are today’s updated standings and probables:

Team  GB  Today  Matchup 
Brewers  47  32  —  vs Nationals, 1:10 p.m.  Marco Estrada vs Stephen Strasburg 
Cardinals  42  36  4.5  @ Rockies, 2:10 p.m.  Marco Gonzales vs Yohan Flande
Pirates  39  38  @ Rays, 11:10 a.m.  Charlie Morton vs David Price 
Reds  38  38  7.5  @ Cubs, 6:05 p.m.  Mat Latos vs Edwin Jackson 
Cubs  32  43  13  vs Reds, 6:05 p.m.  Edwin Jackson vs Mat Latos 

The Cardinals stumbled through a setback in Colorado last night, and their rotation’s sudden injury woes remain a top story. Tracy Ringolsby of MLB.com has a look at how St. Louis is patching the holes with Michael Wacha and Jaime Garcia’s recent departures.

Today in former Brewers:

Finally, with help from the Baseball Reference Play Index, we’d like to wish a happy birthday today to:

Plunk Everyone notes that Ramirez’s 115 career HBP are the second-most ever for a position player born on June 25.

Today is also the seventh anniversary of Manny Parra throwing a perfect game for the AAA Nashville Sounds in 2007 and the ninth anniversary of Prince Fielder and Rickie Weeks each hitting their first MLB home runs in a game against the Twins in 2005. Follow the links for those events’ respective entries in Today In Brewer History at Brew Crew Ball.

Now, if you’ll excuse me, the pig is getting away.

Drink up.

Don’t forget to follow Kyle on Twitter @BrewFrostyMug, and check out and “like” the Mug’s Facebook page. The Frosty Mug runs mornings Monday-Friday and is brought to you by Legends of the Field, a sports memorabilia company you can trust.

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