MILWAUKEE — Matt Albers won’t be available Wednesday afternoon when the Milwaukee Brewers wrap up their three-game series with the Chicago Cubs at Miller Park.
The Brewers placed the right-handed reliever on the disabled list Tuesday with a strained right shoulder following a disastrous showing Monday night in a loss to the Cubs when he allowed a season-high five runs in the 11th inning of a 7-2 Brewers loss.
“He reported some soreness after the game http://www.officialhurricanes.com/authe … kov-jersey ,” Brewers manager Craig Counsell said. “He said it has been there for a little bit. We’ve got to just shut it down and try to get him better. Hopefully, it’s something that’s on the shorter end of things and we’ll have all the diagnostics done and get an answer to that a little later in the week.”
Albers was a big part of Milwaukee’s bullpen’s early-season success.
While Josh Hader and Jeremy Jeffress attracted most of the attention with their dominance, Albers went 3-1 with a save and a 1.08 ERA through his first 21 appearances.
Things took a turn, though, when the calendar flipped to June.
Albers posted a 19.64 ERA over his last four appearances.
“He got to the point where it was affecting him out there on the field and it’s just time to take a break,” Counsell said.
Milwaukee recalled right-hander Jorge Lopez from Triple-A Colorado Springs to fill Albers’ spot on the roster and hands the ball to right-hander Jhoulys Chacin on Wednesday in the series finale, looking to extend their half-game lead over the Cubs in the National League Central.
Chacin has been stellar of late, going 5-0 with a 2.92 ERA over his last 11 starts and is 5-1 with a 3.58 ERA in 15 starts this season.
“He’s doing what he’s good at,” Counsell said. “He’s executing what he’s good at. It’s a sinking fastball, it’s a very good breaking ball. It’s a sprinkled-in changeup to left-handed hitters.
“Overall, he’s just pitching well.”
Chacin hasn’t faced Chicago since June 20 of last season but is 2-4 with a 3.82 ERA in seven career outings (six starts) against the Cubs.
He’ll match up against Cubs lefty Mike Montgomery, who’s filled in nicely while Yu Darvish recovers from right triceps tendinitis. Montgomery is 2-0 with a 1.02 ERA in three starts this season after holding the Pirates to a run over six innings his last time out and is 2-1 with a 3.56 ERA overall this season.
“What he’s showing right now is how good he actually is,” Cubs manager Joe Maddon said.
Montgomery has served as the Cubs’ swingman since he was acquired in a trade ahead of the 2016 deadline. He made it known over the winter that he’d prefer to be a full-time starter but has embraced his current role without issue.
Maddon respected Montgomery’s candor and appreciates his willingness to put the team first.
“I want our guys to speak their mind http://www.officialbluejackets.com/auth … ard-jersey ,” Maddon said. “If that’s what you feel, don’t hold it back. Say it straight forwardly, and then let’s talk about it. I love that. He’s been that guy for a couple years, we just haven’t had that opportunity for him. My advice back to him was just stay ready. ‘When that opportunity arises you need to be ready to take advantage of it.’ He has. … This doesn’t surprise me, what he’s doing.”
Darvish meanwhile took a step forward Tuesday. The right-hander threw off a mound for the first time since May 26 during a 30-pitch bullpen session in Milwaukee. He reported no issues during the workout and will be re-evaluated Wednesday morning.
“He threw really well, easy gas, great location, good spin on his breaking ball, (I was) very impressed,” Maddon said. “The ball was coming out hot, and it was going right where he wanted to throw it. Good command in the ‘pen. … That’s just a bullpen, but it was very encouraging to see him throw that easily and that well.”
There is still no time table for Darvish, who is 1-3 with a 4.95 ERA in eight starts this season http://www.officialredwings.com/authent … kin-jersey , to return.
Buster Posey certainly thought he got hit by a pitch in retaliation.
Manager Bruce Bochy is still disappointed the Marlins plunked Evan Longoria last week and the third baseman is now recovering from surgery on his left hand.
Miami’s Don Mattingly insists nobody on either side was intentionally hit and became upset that the umpires warned both teams too quickly.
Posey homered in the first, Gorkys Hernandez hit a two-run drive in the second and an RBI double later, and the San Francisco Giants held their lead this time to beat the Marlins 6-3 on Tuesday in another night of plunking by both pitching staffs.
Marlins starter Dan Straily and Mattingly were automatically ejected in the second after Straily hit Posey on the left arm with a pitch. Both sides had been warned by plate umpire Andy Fletcher the previous inning after Giants rookie starter Dereck Rodriguez beaned Lewis Brinson as tempers flared for a second straight game.
Whether it was intentional by Straily, Posey said: ”I don’t know. It sure seemed that way.”
Three players were hit and both benches warned early, upsetting Mattingly that the warning came after only his player had been hit.
”I think everybody knows if you give one warning after one guy then you’re asking for trouble out of the blue,” Mattingly said.
He added: ”I’m sure Rodriguez didn’t mean to hit Brinson and Straily didn’t mean to hit Buster. … If they thought there was going to be something going on they should have given both teams warnings before the game. If they thought it was intentional on their part, (Rodriguez) should have been out of the game.”
The tension began during Monday’s series opener when Hunter Strickland took exception to Brinson’s celebration following his tying RBI single in the ninth off the Giants closer, who blew the save and took the loss. Brinson appeared to say something to the reliever on his way to first. Brinson was at third when Strickland was pulled and the two exchanged words.
The Giants closer later broke his pitching hand punching a door in frustration and had surgery Tuesday.
Rodriguez (2-1) struck out six over five innings. He hit Derek Dietrich in the fourth but it wasn’t considered intentional so he was safe from being tossed from his fourth career start. He had a no-decision in a 16-inning Giants win against the Marlins last Thursday.
Straily was ejected for the first time in his career while Mattingly got tossed for the 35th time as both player – seven times – and manager.
”My response I guess would be: Were they throwing at Longoria? (Kelby Tomlinson) got hit in the back last night, so that’s my response, were they throwing at him?” Bochy said.
Elieser Hernandez relieved Straily (2-3), who had been 4-0 with 2.82 in his initial six starts against the Giants.
Andrew McCutchen immediately singled and Brandon Belt drew a bases-loaded walk to put the Giants up 4-0 – the same lead they held in the early innings Monday only to squander it and fall 5-4 as Strickland gave it up and lost his cool. He will be out six to eight weeks.
JT Riddle hit a two-run triple in the fourth following singles by Starlin Castro and Miguel Rojas. Brian Anderson’s RBI double four batters later snapped an 0-for-10 stretch over his previous three games.
The Giants added on in the fifth with consecutive RBI doubles by Alen Hanson, his second of the night, and Hernandez.
Posey sent the first pitch he saw from Straily midway up the bleachers in left-center before Hernandez – who didn’t hit a single homer all last season and now has eight – connected following Hanson’s double leading off the second.
The Marlins left the bases loaded in the second after Rojas reached on second baseman Joe Panik’s one-out throwing error and Riddle singled before Brinson was plunked.
STRICKLAND’S (LATEST) PUNCH
An X-ray after Monday’s game revealed the break of Strickland’s pinkie Justin Abdelkader Jersey , similar to what sidelined lefty ace Madison Bumgarner to begin the season after he was hurt in his final spring training start.
Strickland, who apologized on social media Tuesday, had shown Bochy maturity since his fight with Nationals star Bryce Harper in late May of last year.
Bochy said after the game Sam Dyson would be his regular closer. Dyson came in to relieve Will Smith and record the final two outs on a double play for his second save.
Marlins: 1B Garrett Cooper (bruised right wrist) played four innings for a second straight game at Class A Jupiter and was set to continue his rehab with Triple-A New Orleans.
Giants: SS Brandon Crawford is expected to rejoin the team from paternity leave Wednesday and play again Thursday. … All went as expected with Longoria’s surgery on his hand and he was accompanied by athletic trainer Dave Groeschner at the procedure in Los Angeles. Longoria was headed to Arizona and is in a soft cast for a few days then is scheduled to rejoin the Giants in the Bay Area on Friday or Saturday. … RHP Johnny Cueto, who threw a 40-pitch, two-inning simulated game Monday, is likely headed out soon to begin a rehab assignment as he works back from inflammation in his pitching elbow. … RHP Pierce Johnson was on his way from Triple-A Sacramento to take Strickland’s roster spot.
Marlins: RHP Jose Urena (2-8, 4.18 ERA) looks to win back-to-back starts for the first time this season and build off his best outing of 2018. He tossed eight shutout innings Friday at Baltimore.
Giants: LHP Derek Holland (4-7, 4.48), coming off a loss last Friday at the Dodgers, pit