The Associated PressMILWAUKEE (AP) — It turns out there is way more to the Milwaukee Brewers than just Christian Yelich.
The rest of this Brew Crew can play, too. Especially those guys in that loaded bullpen.
Jhoulys Chacin pitched five sparkling innings on short rest, Mike Moustakas contributed two more big hits and the Brewers blanked the Colorado Rockies 4-0 Friday to take a 2-0 lead in their NL Division Series.
While the sweet-swinging Yelich had a quiet day by his lofty standards, the NL Central champions showed off their supporting cast on the way to their 10th straight win going back to an impressive finish to the regular season. Erik Kratz had two hits and two RBIs, and Milwaukee’s bullpen closed the door after Chacin delivered in his playoff debut.
“It’s been the story of the last six weeks for us for sure, really since the trade deadline, is we’ve become a team with a lot of depth, and that’s how we’re going to have to win,” manager Craig Counsell said. “They’re making an effort to be very, very cautious with Yelich. It’s pretty clear. So guys behind him are going to have opportunities.”
Game 3 is Sunday at Coors Field. Another win, and Milwaukee is into the NL Championship Series for the first time since its previous postseason appearance in 2011.
“The only thing that changes is that we hit first,” Moustakas said. “Other than that, it’s still baseball. It’ll be a little bit of a hostile environment.”
The Rockies, who have played in four different cities since Sunday, are hoping a return to more familiar surroundings will help jump-start their dormant lineup.
“We’re going home, where we feel really good hitting,” shortstop Trevor Story said. “Hopefully we can get it turned around there.”
Kershaw, L.A. edge toward sweep
LOS ANGELES (AP) — Clayton Kershaw tossed eight innings of two-hit ball in the Dodgers’ second straight playoff shutout, and Manny Machado slugged a two-run homer as Los Angeles beat the Atlanta Braves 3-0 for a 2-0 lead in their NL Division Series.
The Dodgers used a nearly identical formula to win 6-0 in Game 1 behind Ryu Hyun Jin, who allowed only four two-out singles over seven innings, and home runs by Joc Pederson, Max Muncy and Enrique Hernandez.
Kershaw was even better. The left-hander struck out three and walked none in remaining unbeaten against Atlanta throughout his illustrious career.
Los Angeles can sweep the best-of-five series in Game 3 on Sunday in Atlanta.