BOSTON — After winning the first three games of this series, it was easy for Brewers fans to get greedy. We have Pete Vuckovich on the mound for the final game, and he had won eight straight games. The offense had scored 27 runs on eight homers in the first three games. We didn’t only see the fourth win as possible, we expected it.
Well, the offense actually held up its end of the bargain. The Brewers hit two more home runs as Gorman Thomas slugged his 18th and third of the series and Roy Howell slugged his second of the season. With seven runs on 10 hits and the ace on the mound, it should have been enough for the four-game sweep that would have pulled the Crew to within a game of first place.
Well, first place will have to wait. Pete Vuckovich was not on his game. Not even close. In 6 2/3 innings, he allowed eight runs (five earned) on nine hits. Most alarming was that he walked seven. In the pivotal seventh, Vuke walked two and hit a batter to load the bases with two outs before Jerry Remy hit a bases-clearing double.
Sure, the defense also didn’t do its job. An Ed Romero error led to two unearned runs and a Ted Simmons passed ball led to another. But still. When you walk eight (Jim Slaton walked one) in addition to 10 hits, you can’t expect to win many games.
While we could leave disappointed knowing that a winnable game got away, the Brewers can hold their heads high. They outplayed the division leaders for most of the four games on foreign soil. This was a statement series.
The Brewers aren’t going away.
Game Notes: Jamie Easterly pitched for the first time since allowing a Dan Ford grand slam 13 days ago … Jim Gantner has a rotator cuff bruise and won’t throw for five days. Not yet known if he will go on the DL.