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you&#8217;re going to have some tough times
Autor: elaine95 (IP zapamiętane)
Data: 04 sty 2019 - 08:57:52

Of course Erik Kratz kept hoping for a moment like this. That&#8217;s why he stuck around Luke Appling Jersey , through a dozen big league organizations, a couple of cruel demotions in the minors, a bunch of near-misses in the World Series.And the time he accidentally shot himself in the hand with a nail gun.&#8220;I really feel like I&#8217;ve played my last game for the last 12 years because the game doesn&#8217;t owe anybody anything,&#8221; the Milwaukee catcher said. &#8220;When you understand that, you appreciate these times more than anything else.&#8221;Luke Voit certainly never expected to hear crowds at Yankee Stadium chanting his name in October, especially when he was stuck at Triple-A for St. Louis in late July. Yet there he was, batting third as New York hosted Boston on Monday night.Ryan Brasier&#8217;s path to these playoffs was unusual, too. The Red Sox reliever is a rookie &#8212; even though he made his major league debut in 2013.This postseason is full of stars, including Christian Yelich, Jose Altuve and Mookie Betts. Ronald Acuna Jr., Miguel Andujar and Walker Buehler are among the many talented newcomers.To see them here, now, that&#8217;s probably not a huge surprise.But Kratz? Starring on this stage?Still scrapping at 38, he&#8217;s a .211 career hitter in the bigs, the very definition of a veteran backup catcher. He&#8217;s been in the system of all four AL teams that reached the Division Series this year, plus the Brewers.Kratz was with Kansas City in the 2014 World Series, but never got off the bench. He came close in Game 7 , lined up to enter if All-Star catcher Salvador Perez had been pulled for a pinch-runner.The next year, he went 0 for 4 in the regular season for the Royals and was nowhere near the playoff roster. Even so, they rewarded him with a championship ring.In 2016, Kratz batted .069 in 14 games for Houston.&#8220;I love Kratzy,&#8221; Astros manager AJ Hinch said Monday. &#8220;I&#8217;ve texted back and forth with him like I do a lot of our players or ex-players. I still remember him running out for intros and falling down to win a bet. I&#8217;ll always remember that, and got to get the video of that.&#8221;&#8220;I remember Erik Kratz, when I told him he was off our team, he was a proud Astro, so I&#8217;m happy when guys succeed when they go elsewhere,&#8221; he said.Kratz was in the minors this June when the Yankees traded him to Milwaukee for a player to be named. He impressed the Brewers with his work regimen and knowledge, and produced enough to earn a spot in the playoffs.Against Colorado last week, he became the oldest position player to start in his postseason debut since Lave Cross for the Philadelphia Athletics in the 1905 World Series.&#8220;Lave Cross from Milwaukee, yeah, he was a really good third baseman. We played together in rookie ball,&#8221; Kratz kidded.&#8220;It&#8217;s something that is part of history, so maybe in 113 years, some dude is going to be like , Erik Kratz &#8212; is it Kratz? What is that?&#8221; he said.No joke: Kratz went 5 for 8 in the NL Division Series sweep of the Rockies, and his Milwaukee teammates started chanting &#8220;MVP! MVP!&#8221; at him in the bubbly-soaked clubhouse.&#8220;It&#8217;s gone from an unsung season to kind of a front-and-center role right now,&#8221; Brewers manager Craig Counsell said.During the series, Kratz reflected on his future in baseball. He realizes time is running out.&#8220;I haven&#8217;t had a good enough career to retire. I&#8217;m just going to quit. I&#8217;ll just be out. That&#8217;s what&#8217;s going to happen,&#8221; he said.Brasier&#8217;s trip to this postseason also took several turns. He seemed to be off to a good start as rookie with the Angels in 2013, putting together a 2.00 ERA in seven relief appearances.That was before Tommy John surgery, more time in the minors and a detour to Japan. He signed with the Red Sox in spring training, returned to the majors shortly before the All-Star break and kept a spot in the Boston bullpen.He&#8217;s already made his presence known.In Game 2 of the ALDS, the 31-year-old Brasier got into a verbal spat with Gary Sanchez, annoyed that the Yankees slugger kept stepping out of the batter&#8217;s box. That came as he struck out Andrew McCutchen, Giancarlo Stanton and Sanchez in the same inning.At 27, Voit&#8217;s trek wasn&#8217;t so winding. Rather, he was backed up in the minors for St. Louis behind star first baseman Matt Carpenter. The beefy Voit didn&#8217;t exactly fit the physical profile of the athletic-minded Cardinals, either.Dealt to the Yankees shortly before the July 31 trade deadline for Giovanny Gallegos and Chasen Shreve, Voit got off to a slow start and seemed to be a backup for Greg Bird, at best.But then, his huge swing started clicking. He connected for 14 home runs down the stretch , hit a two-run triple in the AL wild-card win over Oakland and has two hits and two RBIs in two playoff games against Boston.In a city known for fashion, Voit also has made his own style statement. He prefers to keep the top button on his jersey unfastened, with no T-shirt underneath.&#8220;Let the chest hair hang, baby,&#8221; he said. MILWAUKEE &#8212; Major League Baseball knew what it was doing when it scheduled six games between the Milwaukee Brewers and the Chicago Cubs during the final month of the regular season.The teams will meet for the first of those games on Monday afternoon at Miller Park, where the Brewers will try to close a five-game gap on the National League Central leaders while also trying to hold off the St. Louis Cardinals in a tight NL wild-card race.Both sides come into this critical three-game series on high notes: The Brewers have won four straight series since splitting two games at Wrigley Field last month and the Cubs have won 12 of their last 17.Article continues below ...Zach Davies gets the ball for Milwaukee in the series opener. It will be Davies&#8217; first start since May 29, when a shoulder injury landed him on this disabled list for the second time this season.His rehab process was stunted along the way by back issues, but after throwing a complete-game shutout last week for Class A Wisconsin, the Brewers brought the right-hander back to face a team he has held to three runs in 11 2/3 innings this season.Davies was looking to build on a strong finish to the 2017 season but has been limited to eight starts in 2018, going 2-5 with a 4.23 ERA. &#8220;I&#8217;m actually glad we&#8217;re putting him in that spot,&#8221; Brewers manager Craig Counsell told reporters Sunday. &#8220;It&#8217;s added motivation for him. He&#8217;s very familiar with this setting and this team. There are no surprises here.&#8221;Davies has a track record of success against the Cubs, posting a 3.64 ERA in 12 career starts.&#8221;&#8220;I think with a good series here, it could change the make-up of this division a little bit,&#8221; Davies said. &#8220;I don&#8217;t think any game is bigger than just the next day&#8217;s game, but it definitely could change some things.&#8221;Monday will mark the Brewers&#8217; first look at Cole Hamels since he joined the Cubs in a deal with Texas ahead of the non-waiver trade deadline.The change of scenery salvaged the veteran left-hander&#8217;s season. He was 5-9 with a 4.72 in 20 starts for Texas this year, but since the trade he is 4-0 with a 0.96 ERA, allowing just three earned runs in 39 innings spanning four starts.&#8220;I love the fact that he was able to complete that game Bill Melton Jersey ,&#8221; Cubs manager Joe Maddon said. &#8220;That absolutely benefits him down the road.&#8221;Maddon is known to have a quick hook, so when the Cincinnati Reds loaded the bases in the ninth inning in an Aug. 23 game, the fact that he left Hamels in the game is a good indication of how well he still was pitching. There was no drop in velocity, which is usually a precursor to getting pulled.Maddon&#8217;s faith in Hamels was rewarded when Tucker Barnhart bounced into a game-ending double play.The win improved Hamels&#8217; record to 4-0 with a 0.79 ERA for the Cubs after compiling a 4.72 ERA with the Rangers before the July 27 trade.&#8220;To be a major league pitcher, you&#8217;re going to have some tough times,&#8221; Hamels told earlier this month. &#8220;You can&#8217;t give in. You have to fight. That&#8217;s what it&#8217;s all about. They&#8217;re not going to give in. Neither should you.&#8221;He&#8217;ll be pitching on an extra day of rest after Maddon gave Alec Mills a spot start to allow his rotation to have an extra day of rest during a stretch of 20 games without days off. That meant Hamels would miss a chance to face his former team, the Philadelphia Phillies, and current ace Aaron Nola.&#8220;For me, ultimately, I just want to go out and pitch and win,&#8221; Hamels said. &#8220;However, they&#8217;re going to slot me is not my decision. For us right now, we have a lot of games with no days off, and all of us are pitching really well. So it&#8217;s not fair to any individual to kind of move me around for this sort of situation.&#8221;Hamels has had his fair share of success against Milwaukee. In 14 career starts &#8212; most of them while pitching for the Phillies &#8212; Hamels is 7-3 with a 3.64 ERA.

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