The Milwaukee Brewers defeated the Colorado Rockies 4-0 in Game 2 of the National League Divisional Series on Friday (box score). The win gives the Brewers a 2-0 lead in the best-of-five series. The teams will have Saturday off for travel purposes before resuming play Sunday in Colorado.
Here's what you need to know about Game 2.
Chacin comes up big on short rest
Jhoulys Chacin received his second important start of the week. On Monday, he battled against the Chicago Cubs in the NL Central tiebreaker game. On Friday, Chacin started on three days' rest for the first time in his career -- and he pitched better than expected.
Chacin tossed five shutout innings, holding the Rockies to three hits and three walks while fanning three. He did so while tossing more pitches than he'd thrown in a month:
Pitching on three days' rest for the first time in his career, Jhoulys Chacin threw 85 pitches. That's the most he's thrown in a start since Aug. 31 (102).— Todd Rosiak (@Todd_Rosiak) October 5, 2018
Chacin's slider was particularly effective on the afternoon. He threw 40, generating eight whiffs and having another eight go for called strikes. Chacin overall generated 10 swings and misses on the day, with the other two coming on heaters.
Starting Chacin on short rest rather than turning to an alternative seemed like a questionable decision heading into the game. But credit the Brewers for looking smart after the fact, and Chacin for gutting out the biggest five innings of his career.
Rockies offense continues to struggle
With the shutout on Friday, the first in the Rockies' postseason history, they've now scored six runs in 41 innings this week.
On the one hand, you can forgive the Rockies for being tired. Friday's game was their fourth game of the week, and just the first time they've played in the same venue in consecutive contests -- the Boston Red Sox had played zero games in that span, for comparison.
On the other hand, the offense was largely ineffectual this season. They ranked 25th according to FanGraphs' park-adjusted wRC+, and now they're going up against a team that can pitch and field. That's not a combination that tends to precipitate offense.
Still, with the way this series is going, the Rockies offense will have let down their pitching once more -- that's not a comment that has been made often throughout the franchise's history, but it's one we've made more than a few times this year.
Anderson does his part
The Rockies offense didn't help him out, but Tyler Anderson deserves some love for his outing.
Anderson went six innings, holding the Brewers to one run on six baserunners. He fanned five, generating 11 whiffs on his 84 pitches. Four came on his changeup.
Anderson had previously faced the Brewers once this season, back in August. He gave up seven runs in four innings then. He also yielded three home runs.
Fair to say Anderson was significantly better on Friday -- even if his teammates couldn't get him the necessary run support.
Remember on Thursday, when Jeremy Jeffress blew the save after eight strong innings from the Brewers bullpen? He earned some redemption on Friday, tossing two innings, striking out three, and allowing two baserunners.
Jeffress pitched both the eighth and ninth innings, facing the middle of Colorado's order before taking his own at-bat. It was an odd decision -- Junior Guerra had been warming and Keon Broxton had been on deck when the game was 2-0 -- but one that didn't impact the final score.
Moustakas continues big series
The Brewers probably don't regret their midseason deal for Moustakas, is what we're saying.
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