Blog Entry

Wolf huge as Brewers beat Cards, even NLCS

Posted on: October 13, 2011 11:30 pm
ST. LOUIS -- Numbers game? Here's one: Eight starting pitchers into this NL Championship Series, one finally produced a quality start. It came in Game 4 from the most unlikeliest of places: Soft-throwing veteran Randy Wolf.

And it could not have come at a more opportune time for manager Ron Roenicke's crew.

Brewers 4, Cardinals 2, and this series is dead even.

Which means one very important thing to both clubs:

Following Game 5 Friday night, this series is guaranteed to return to Milwaukee, where the Brewers practically have run the table this season.

That does not necessarily mean they'll do it again. But it does mean that if St. Louis has ideas of advancing to its first World Series since 2006, the Cardinals are going to need more out of their starting pitchers.

I know, that sounds like heresy when Tony La Russa has eight relievers on his playoff roster and, just a night before, folks couldn't heap enough praise on his hard-throwing pen. But asking them to be perfect every night is a tall order.

When Ryan Braun greeted reliever Mitchell Boggs with an RBI single in the fifth inning to snap a 2-2 tie and lift the Brewers into a lead they would not relinquish, you bet it was attention-grabbing: To that point, Cardinals relievers had retired 18 consecutive Brewers batters over the past two games.

But they've been pitching a lot of innings in a series marked by (marred by?) the brevity of innings from starters. Only Milwaukee's Zack Greinke and Wolf have lasted six or more innings. And only Wolf has surrendered three or fewer runs while doing so.

You would have predicted Chris Carpenter? Or Yovani Gallardo?

Wolf, tossing a riveting array of pitches from a slow curve (67, 68 mph) to a pedestrian fastball (90), kept St. Louis off-balance all evening. He left having allowed just two runs and six hits in seven innings. He whiffed six and walked just one.

Not that the Brewers were desperate for a performance like that after Gallardo's Game 3 clunker, but Bernie Brewer was seen pulling his winter sweaters out of storage up in Miller Park after that.

Now, it's a whole new series.

First team to get some decent starting pitching wins.

Since: Oct 18, 2006
Posted on: October 14, 2011 2:24 am

Wolf huge as Brewers beat Cards, even NLCS

Ok, that was funny.  No, I took a bus to school and maybe I still feel a smidge betrayed that the Braves were stolen from Milwaukee. I just reached a point where there's too much monry played for too little output and who can afford to take their family to a sporting event? Bleacher seats were always plentiful, the beer was inexpensive and a dsy at the ballpark......, ok Wah, wah, wah. Get over it. Sorry. I should be excited but, why? seriously. For that money? And watch this product? The '57 Braves would destroy both of these teams for a tenth of the cost of course we did refer to him as DP Crandall, as in, double play. But he was a pretty good manager for awhyhile. Yeah , him and what was that other Brave palyer? Joe Torre? I think he did ok somewhere for awhyhile.

Since: Dec 23, 2009
Posted on: October 14, 2011 1:57 am

Wolf huge as Brewers beat Cards, even NLCS

and you walked 12 miles to school uphill both ways.

Somebody call the WAH WAH WAHmbulance 

Since: Oct 18, 2006
Posted on: October 14, 2011 1:36 am

Wolf huge as Brewers beat Cards, even NLCS

I was around when the saying was Spahn and Sain and pray for rain. They weren't paid MILLIONS of dollars, and it wasn't altogether uncommon to have a starting pitcher throw a complete game. Now today's starting pitcher gets paid millions to maybe pitch 6 innings, 7 if we're lucky. Any wonder why I've given up following baseball, even if a team from my hometown of milwaukee is in it? Don't even get me started on basketball and the Bucks. Good riddance I say; and other than game 1 where's Fielder?

The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or