Brewers host Giants in clash of division leaders

MLB Baseball

Milwaukee right-hander Brandon Woodruff will be looking for his first victory in over a month when the Brewers host the San Francisco Giants on Saturday in the second game of a three-game series between division leaders.

Woodruff (7-6, 2.26 ERA) will be opposed by right-hander Aaron Sanchez (1-1, 2.97), making his first start since coming off the injured list. This will be the first career start for both pitchers against the opponent.

Mlwaukee took the series opener 2-1 Friday on Rowdy Tellez’s walk-off single in the 10th inning, giving Brewers manager Craig Counsell his 500th career victory.

Although third in the National League in ERA, Woodruff has not won since June 29. He was 0-3 with 3.56 ERA in five starts in July.

Sanchez, who started six games early in the season, has made two relief appearances since returning on July 30, giving up one run in five innings. He was out with right biceps tightness.

Milwaukee maintained its seven-game lead in the NL Central. Despite the loss, San Francisco still has the best record in baseball and had a four-game lead in the NL West.

The Brewers’ COVID-19 situation continues to worsen, with right-hander Adrian Houser testing positive on Friday. He is expected to go on the injured list on Saturday. That will give Milwaukee nine players on the COVID-19 IL over the last 12 days. In addition to Hauser, the list includes starting pitcher Eric Lauer and relievers Josh Hader, Hunter Strickland, Jake Cousins and Jandel Gustave.

With the Brewers stretched thin in the bullpen, starter Corbin Burnes turned in seven solid innings in Friday’s victory, allowing one run on four hits.

“Any time your starter gives you a performance like that, it puts you in really good shape,” Counsell said. “He was just on top of his game tonight I thought more than anything. I thought his curveball was a big pitch tonight. He landed his curveball a whole bunch. You get seven innings from your starter, you’re set up pretty good to get through the rest of the game.”

San Francisco got its only run Friday on Brandon Belt’s solo homer in the sixth inning.

One bit of concern for the Giants: Mike Yastrzemski crashed into the wall in the fourth inning while hauling in a long drive to the gap in right-center, but remained in the game.

“Obviously he slammed into the wall pretty good there,” Giants manager Gabe Kapler said. “It was an excellent catch, good jump and, like Yaz always does, kind of sacrificed his body on that play for the team. So far, so good, in terms of his ability to bounce back from it physically and we’ll keep checking on him.”

–Field Level Media

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