Game 24 Thoughts: New Month, Clean Slate

Fangraphs Win Probability Graph

W: Yovani Gallardo (3-2)
L: Mat Latos (1-3)
SV: Trevor Hoffman (4)

SD HR: None
MIL HR: Gallardo (1), Rickie Weeks (4)

Yes, you read that right — Hoffman finally managed to nail down a save, doing so in 1-2-3 fashion. But he wasn’t the story tonight.

Gallardo turned in one of the most impressive performances of his career, not only striking out 11 Padres in 7 innings, but also hitting a solo home run in the 3rd inning to stop the Brewers’ scoreless streak at 24 innings. It was the first run the Brewers scored since Wednesday.

The only other offense came on a solo shot by Weeks in the 5th, but that’s all the Brewers would need. Yo left after throwing 121 pitches, which is a little concerning but with Rick Peterson on the staff it’s not something I anticipate seeing happen very many times this season. LaTroy Hawkins came in for the 8th inning and pitched another impressive frame — outside of a couple flare ups earlier this year, he’s been one of the most consistent performers out of the bullpen.

Then it was Hoffman’s turn to nail down the win, and after finally retiring Matt Stairs on strikes for the first out to conclude a long (and stress-filled) first at-bat, he got the final two batters of the game to make easy outs.

It’s hard to say the slump is over with a 2-1 win, but it’s definitely a promising step in the right direction. The pitching was great, the offense managed to score just enough to win (here’s to hoping the homer gets Weeks going again), and the bullpen finished the job with ease. Just remember this game whenever someone tries to tell you Yovani Gallardo doesn’t deserve his contract extension.

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