Monday was not a normal April day in Chicago. Normally the wind at Wrigley Field
is blowing in and the temperatures are low. Yesterday, with the wind blowing out and the temperatures respectable, the Milwaukee Brewers scored 4-runs in the 1st inning and held off the Cubs 7-4.
The wind that helped the Brewers get the lead, changed directions late and helped them pull out the win. With the bases loaded full of Cubs, Starlin Castro’s 2-out drive would have at the very least, hit the wall with the wind blowing out. But blowing in, Castro’s drive turned in to a fly ball out and Jim Henderson earned his first save of the season.
Henderson grabbed the closer’s job earlier after John Axford has basically struggled out of the gates.
The Brewers pitching staff had struggled all season and the wind blowing out didn’t look good. But Marco Estrada came up big with a 7-inning, 5-hit effort to secure his first win. Estrada’s only blemish, serving up a 2-run homer to Cubs catcher Wellington Castillo in the 2nd inning.
Norichika Aoki continues to get it done in the leadoff spot. He reached base in his first five trips to the plate before being robbed by Cubs first baseman Anthony Rizzo in the 9th. Aoki (.419 BA & .486 OBP), Ryan Braun and Martin Maldonado all had three hits as a part of the Brewers 12-hit attack.
Ryan Braun’s return to the lineup meant good news for the Brewers. With his 3 hits, Braun raised his batting average at Wrigley Field to .381. Only Pittsburgh’s Andrew McCutchen has a higher average (.386) among active players at Wrigley.
The Brewers went 4 for 14 with runners in scoring position and stranded 12 base runners, but their 4-run first inning meant playing with the lead for the first time this season.
Game 2 of the series is tonight. Wily Peralta (0-1 6.75 ERA) pitches for the Brewers. Travis Wood (1-0, 0.00) goes for the Cubs.