Found May 01, 2013 on Fox Sports Wisconsin:
MILWAUKEE -- The game of baseball offers quite a few moments that are bizarre and sometimes just plain unlucky. Michael Gonzalez's relief pitching debut with the Brewers on April 3 certainly qualified as both. After Gonzalez walked the leadoff hitter, a perfect bunt single followed putting two on with nobody out. Rockies left fielder Carlos Gonzalez followed with a broken bat single that should have been at least one out, but the sharp end of the bat went flying right at Brewers first baseman Alex Gonzalez. With that Michael Gonzalez's day was done. All three runs eventually scored and skyrocketed his ERA. A few days later, Gonzalez was pitching when a passed ball went off the umpire's mask and bounced so far up the first base line that two runs scored. But since his few rough outings to start the season, Gonzalez has been throwing the ball much better. He recently had a run of five games in which he didn't allow a run or an inherited runner to score and the life on his pitches looked drastically different than early in the season, though his ERA still sits at 4.32. "Spring training, I think he was just trying to get a feel for it, trying to get all of his pitches in," Brewers manager Ron Roenicke said. "We didn't see much velocity in spring training. Then at the beginning of the season, not much was there. Then all of a sudden he got velocity but along with it he got command. When he's commanding the three pitches he has, he's a good major league pitcher." For Gonzalez, nothing changed in his preparation. Admitting his experience aided his ability to bounce back from a few of the crazy outings he had early on, Gonzalez never lost confidence in his abilities knowing time was needed to settle in to his new environment. "There's not that pressure or that sense of what am I doing?" Gonzalez said. "I know it happens. You have to check it off. You have to have that short-term memory. I do, and I'm thankful for that. Being a closer, it was that mentality. I just keep that same mindset. Nothing really bothers me. I keep that same tone. "The preparation has been the same since spring training, so I expect good results. Sometimes you just can't help what results you get, but you go into the day knowing that you prepared yourself the best way possible and you should have success." The short-term memory served Gonzalez well when he was the closer for Pittsburgh in 2006 and again for a stretch with Atlanta in 2008 and 2009. "It was huge," Gonzalez said of his closing experience. "I feel like I'm still pitching today because of that mindset. It's going all out, going for it. More than anything it's if you fail that night, you have to be ready because you are going to be out there trying to get that save again. The quicker you forget about it, the better it is for you." As more of the left-handed specialist of the two left-handers the Brewers added this offseason, Gonzalez has been used against left-handers and right-handers. Contrary to his career numbers, left-handers have had success against Gonzalez thus far this season, hitting .353 in 17 at-bats. But those numbers have slowly gotten better of late, something Gonzalez anticipates continuing. For Milwaukee's bullpen to have success, Gonzalez is going to have to get left-handers out when called upon. When the bullpen was struggling early, Gonzalez wasn't doing that. A good chunk of the bullpen was scuffling at once but since has settled in and has pitched well. "You see the talent out there," Gonzalez said of the bullpen. "There's going to be struggles and we happened to all get them right at the beginning. But we know the talent and the stuff is there with the guys. We've gotten to know our roles a bit more and we're a little bit more comfortable with each other. Now it's go out there and have fun." Follow Andrew Gruman on Twitter.
THE BACKYARD
BEST OF MAXIM
RELATED ARTICLES

Brewers Tuesday: Ramirez could return soon

MILWAUKEE -- Brewers third baseman Aramis Ramirez took the next step in his return from the disabled list by successfully running the bases at 75 to 80 percent prior to Tuesday's game against Pittsburgh. On the disabled list since April 6 with a sprained left knee, Ramirez will run the bases again tomorrow and could return shortly thereafter if all goes according to plan. ...

Extra work pays dividends for Brewers' Weeks

MILWAUKEE -- Rickie Weeks was frustrated, so he picked up the phone and called Brewers hitting coach Johnny Narron. He doesn't usually like to get early work in unless it's after a day off, but Weeks met Narron at the park at 12:30 and went to work in the cage and then on the field during batting practice. It's hard to know if his diligent efforts paid off Tuesday night...

Prince sent down to make way for Ramirez' return

MILWAUKEE -- Following Thursday night's 6-5 loss to St. Louis, the Milwaukee Brewers optioned outfielder Josh Prince to Triple-A Nashville to clear room for Aramis Ramirez's return from the disabled list Friday. Prince, 25, was called up from Nashville when Ramirez went on the disabled list on April 6, but has found playing time hard to come by. Prince had just one hit...

Little changes make a big difference for Colorado Rockies

Dexter Fowler has emerged as a serious All-Star candidate.Maybe Tony Robbins was wrong when he famously said "by changing nothing, nothing changes."The biggest complaint about the Colorado Rockies after losing 98 games in 2012 was that they stood pat with their roster. The only changes that were made came in the form of management and coaches. However, a large part of the...

Milwaukee Brewers Option Outfielder Khris Davis

The Milwaukee Brewers have optioned outfielder Khris Davis to Triple-A Nashville after having struggled in the majors this year. He looks to get back on track for another shot at the big leagues this summer. The post Milwaukee Brewers Option Outfielder Khris Davis appeared first on FFLockerRoom | NFL - MLB News | Fantasy Sports Advice | Sports Talk.

Peralta unlucky as Cardinals bat around in third inning

MILWAUKEE -- It was just one of those days for Wily Peralta. One inning filled with a whole lot of bad luck left him with a pitching line unworthy of how he pitched. While Peralta didn't pitch great, he didn't deserve to give up six runs and 11 hits in just 4 13 innings. The Cardinals scored all six of their runs in a 6-5 victory off Peralta with two outs in the third inning...

Homestander: One Hand, No Hits

Each Thursday preceding Brewers weekend home stands, Tyler Maas will help prepare fans for all elements of the upcoming series with the Homestander. Tyler prints Wisconsin-themed shirts at Forward Fabrics and contributes to such fine publications as Milwaukee Magazine and The A.V. Club Milwaukee. All views, naughty words and weirdo sentiments are his own. Follow him at @TylerJamesMaas...

Re-evaluating the Zack Greinke trades for the Brewers and Royals

When the Milwaukee Brewers acquired Zack Greinke from the Kansas City Royals in late 2010, it was a sign that the Brewers were going “all in” for the 2011 season. The haul they gave up appeared costly at the time, headlined by Milwaukee’s starting shortstop and defensive whiz Alcides Escobar. They also threw in outfielder Lorenzo Cain, and pitchers Jeremy Jeffress and Jake...

Westbrook solid, Cardinals beat Brewers 6-5

MILWAUKEE (AP) Jake Westbrook allowed one run over six innings for his 100th career win and the St. Louis Cardinals held off the Milwaukee Brewers 6-5 on Thursday night. Westbrook (2-1), came in with a 0.98 ERA, best in the majors - it increased to 1.10. In his 12th season, he walked three and struck out four. The Brewers were 1 for 8 with runners in scoring position against him...

First Pitch: The Road to Contending Goes Through Milwaukee

For the past two years I’ve had the same thought about the Milwaukee Brewers and what they say about the Pirates’ chances. The thought is always “if the Pirates can beat the Brewers, they’ll show they are legit this year”. Last year the Pirates went 4-11 against Milwaukee, including a 1-8 record in the final two months of the season. They went 3-6 on the road at Miller...

Pirates 6, Brewers 4

THOSE were the Pirates we came to know and love during the past few weeks. After falling behind yet again at Miller Park, the Bucs pulled off a big comeback and managed to shut Milwaukee down late to get out of Wisconsin with a rare victory. Jeanmar Gomez‘s start went about how most expected it to go. He labored early on and only managed to go four innings and gave up a couple...

Yankees acquire Brignac from Rockies

The New York Yankees acquired infielder Reid Brignac from the Colorado Rockies for cash, adding a lefty bat to the group of backups filling in for the team's injured stars. ''He played shortstop, second, third. A fly-ball hitter, so we're going to see if we can take advantage of the left-handed bat at Yankee Stadium. He's a very good fielder, more so than a bat...

Roy Oswalt joins the Rockies on a minor league deal

Not a lot of people are buying into the Colorado Rockies as a legitimately good team, but they do apparently have one player who thinks they are for real. After spending the off-season saying that he was only interested in signing with a contender, Roy Oswalt has jumped about the Rockies bandwagon, inking a minor league deal with the club. For Oswalt, this smacks of desperation...

Fantasy: April under a microscope

On the way to another excellent season, Carlos Gonzalez hit .222 last August. You may not have noticed because it was hidden by his earlier numbers. Josh Hamilton hit .204 this April. You definitely noticed. Both months hurt you, the difference is perception. Hitters slump all the time. It's just much more apparent when that ugly early-season total is staring you in the face...

Beckett remains winless as Dodgers drop rubber match

LOS ANGELES (AP) -- Troy Tulowitzki and Carlos Gonzalez each hit two-run doubles, and center fielder Dexter Fowler robbed Adrian Gonzalez of what would have been his second home run of the game, leading the Colorado Rockies to a 7-3 victory over the Los Angeles Dodgers on Wednesday night. Reliever Josh Outman (1-0) got credit for the victory in the rubber game of the series, allowing...
MLB News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
Help
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.