gettyimages-13263353731.jpg
Getty Images

Wednesday afternoon at American Family Field, the Milwaukee Brewers and Chicago Cubs wrapped up their three-game series with maybe the wildest game in baseball this season. Chicago tagged rookie lefty Aaron Ashby for seven runs in the first inning, but the Brewers stormed back and scored 15 -- 15! -- unanswered runs to win (MIL 15, CHC 7).

Here are Milwaukee's 15 unanswered runs. It was the first game in the Modern Era in which both teams led by at least seven runs within the first four innings, according to Stats Perform.

"We knew since the first inning that we were going to come back," Brewers shortstop Willy Adames told reporters, including MLB.com's Adam McCalvy, following the game. "We had that feeling."  

According to FanGraphs, the Cubs had a 94.6 percent chance to win Wednesday's game at one point in the first inning. By the bottom of the fourth, the Brewers flipped the win probability to 98.1 percent in their favor. That's quite the swing.

Here are five things to know about Milwaukee's huge comeback win, which completed the three-game sweep over their NL Central rivals.

Ashby had an historically bad debut

Aaron Ashby
MIL • SP • 26
IP2/3
R7
H4
BB3
K0
View Profile

It's long forgotten now, but Ashby drew the start and made his MLB debut Wednesday. Our R.J. Anderson called Ashby a prospect to know in Milwaukee's system coming into the season, saying he has "the potential for an arsenal full of average or better offerings." He also cautioned Ashby's control could relegate him to the bullpen.

The 23-year-old southpaw walked 24 batters in 38 Triple-A innings prior to his callup, and in his MLB debut Wednesday, he walked three and recorded only two outs. The Cubs tagged him for seven runs (four earned), and only 18 of Ashby's 39 pitches were strikes, or 46 percent. Ouch.

A pitcher allowing seven runs in his MLB debut happens a few times each season. Ashby is the fifth pitcher to do it this year and the second Brewer -- Alec Bettinger was charged with 11 runs in four innings in his MLB debut against the Dodgers on May 2. Ashby is only the fourth pitcher to allow seven runs in his MLB debut while failing to complete an inning, however. The others:


DateIPHRERBBKHR

Fred Hutchison, Tigers

May 2, 1939 vs. Yankees

2/3

4

8

8

5

0

1

Joe Cleary, Senators

August 4, 1945 vs. Red Sox

1/3

5

7

7

3

1

0

Ralph Botting, Angels

June 28, 1979 vs. Rangers

2/3

7

7

6

0

0

0

Aaron Ashby, Brewers

June 30, 2021 vs. Cubs

2/3

4

7

4

3

0

0

Ashby is the only one of those four pitchers to start the game, so a case can be made he had the worst MLB debut by a starting pitcher in history. On the bright side, the bullpen picked him up with 8 1/3 scoreless innings, and the offense took him off the hook for a loss. Good teammates, those Brewers.

Urías had a huge game

Two years ago the Brewers acquired infielder Luis Urías in the Trent Grisham trade with the Padres, and hoped he could take over as their starting shortstop at some point. That hasn't happened -- Urías has bounced from short to second to third -- and it took a little longer for his bat to come around than Milwaukee would've liked, but it is finally coming around.

On Wednesday, Urías went 4-for-5 with a double and two home runs out of the leadoff spot. He scored three runs and drove in four, and raised his season batting line to .247/.338/.433. It was his first career multi-homer game.

Urías took over as the starting third baseman earlier this month, when Travis Shaw went down with a shoulder injury. In his 12 games prior to Wednesday, Urías went 15 for 50 (.300) with three doubles and a home run. He has 10 homers in 76 games this year after hitting six homers in 124 games from 2019-20.

Adames continues to make an impact

What an addition Adames has been for the Brew Crew. Milwaukee has been seeking a steady shortstop for years, seemingly since JJ Hardy was traded away, and it looks like Adames will put an end to a shortstop revolving door that included Urías, Orlando Arcia, Jean Segura, Jonathan Villar, and others over the years.

The Brewers acquired Adames in a four-player trade with the Rays last month, and in his first 36 games with the club, he authored a .279/.354/.504 batting line with 11 doubles and six home runs. In Wednesday's comeback Adames went 1-for-3 with two walks. His fourth inning grand slam officially broke the game open.

Righty Trevor Richards, the other player the Brewers acquired in the Adames trade, threw two scoreless innings Wednesday. He has a 3.32 ERA in 19 innings with Milwaukee. Nice little trade, I'd say. Milwaukee greatly improved their lineup and defense with Adames, and netted a solid depth arm as well.

"He's performing at a crazy high level right now," Brewers manager Craig Counsell told reporters, including Tom Haudricourt of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, about Adames' impact following the game. "Just the magnitude of his home runs right now has been pretty incredible more than anything."  

Chicago blew its largest lead in 19 years

The Cubs threw a combined no-hitter at Dodger Stadium last Thursday and they haven't won a game since. Including Wednesday's loss, Chicago is 0-6 since the combined no-hitter, and they've been outscored 47-17 in the six games. 

"I think we all have to be better," Cubs manager David Ross told reporters, including Russell Dorsey of the Chicago Sun-Times, after the game. "I've got to do a better job. The coaching staff, the players, all the way down to the trainers. We've all got to continue to lift each other up, assess where we can help out and try to be better."

Jake Arrieta was staked to a 7-0 lead in the first inning Wednesday and couldn't get out of the second inning. After the game, Ross told reporters they will "reset this off-day (Thursday) and then go from there," when asked about Arrieta's rotation spot. Here's what Chicago's pitchers did Wednesday:


IPHRERBBKHR

Jake Arrieta

1 2/3

4

6

3

4

2

1

Keegan Thompson

1/2

2

0

0

0

1

0

Rex Brothers

1 1/3

2

3

3

2

2

0

Tommy Nance

1 2/3

2

5

5

1

2

1

Adam Morgan

1

1

1

1

0

0

1

Brad Wieck

1

0

0

0

2

1

0

Eric Sogard

1

1

0

0

0

1

0

Total

8

12

15

12

9

9

3

Cubs pitchers also hit two Brewers batters (both by Nance), including one with the bases loaded. Also, Sogard is an infielder, as I'm sure you know. It was his fourth pitching appearance of the season and his third in the last two weeks. He is unscored upon in 3 1/3 innings. Might be time to give him some leverage work, eh?

The seven-run blown lead is Chicago's largest since June 28, 2002, when they turned an 8-0 third inning lead against the White Sox into a 13-9 loss. Here's the box score. Also, the Cubs are only the second team in the last 50 years to lose a game by at least seven runs after leading by seven runs. The Giants also did it on April 26, 1976, against the Cardinals

The Brewers last erased a seven-run deficit on July 2, 2011, against the Twins. Milwaukee trailed 7-0 in the fifth and scored eight unanswered runs to win that game. Here's the box score.

Milwaukee has a commanding NL Central lead

Less than two weeks ago the Brewers were one game behind the Cubs in the NL Central. Following Wednesday's win, they have a commanding six-game lead in the division. It is twice as large as any other division lead in baseball. Wednesday's win was Milwaukee's eighth straight win and 10th in their last 11 games. They've outscored their opponents 73-38 in the 11 games.

"Nothing is decided. Nothing's close," Counsell told McCalvy about the six-game lead. "This goes to the last week of the season like every single year it does. But when you give yourself some space, then you give yourself a little room for error. We know there's a huge number of games left."