Davis outduels Cappy

Theirs used to pitch for us…ours used to pitch for them. They’re both left-handed, former teammates, neighbors and friends. Former Dback Chris Capuano was squared-off against former Brewer Doug Davis Wednesday evening. With the way Brewers have been hitting lefties this year, and the way Chris Capuano has been taking a pounding of late, I was thinking it would be a slugfest. Nope. Both starters pitched shutouts for the first three innings; both then surrendered their only two runs of the evening in the fourth–the Brewers coming on a 2-run homer by Kevin Mench, making up for slipping in the field in the top of the inning leading to both the Dbacks runs. Davis exited after 6 IP and 112 pitches, with just 3 hits, but only 1 K and 5 BB’s; Capuano lasted 7 IP, 99 pitches, and allowed 4 hits with 5 K’s and 2 BB’s. Davis was relieved by Tony Peña; Yost gambled and went with veteran Grant Balfour making his debut with the Brewers and his first MLB appearance since 2004. Peña and Balfour each pitched 2 innings…but the similarities then ended. Peña was dominating, allowing just one hit while fanning three; Balfour started the top of the 8th by getting Chris Young to strike out and Orlando Hudson to ground out, Balfour plunked Eric Byrnes and seemingly came undone–after Byrnes stole second (mostly on a bad throw by Damian Miller), Balfour walked Conor Jackson on five pitches, then put a 94 m.p.h. fastball right over the plate for third-baseman Mark Reynolds to dump into deep left-center. Mesa and José Valverde kept the Crew finished off the Brewers to give the Dbacks game three, 5-2. With the Cubs’ win, the Crew are back to only 3½ games ahead. Thursday’s finale is a day game with Yovani Gallardo filling in for Ben Sheets…hopefully, Gallardo’s move to the bullpen won’t impact his ability to start games.

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