WISCONSIN SPORTS ROUNDUP: Brewers win it in the 10th, thanks to Gallardo's bat
MILWAUKEE -- Tonight's starter Yovani Gallardo hit a walk-off pinch-hit double in the 10th inning last night to give the Milwaukee Brewers a 7-to-6 home win over Baltimore. The Orioles knew the Brewers were out of position players, so reliever T-J McFarland intentionally walked Mark Reynolds with two out to force Gallardo to bat. McFarland fell behind on the count 2-0, and needed to throw a strike -- which Gallardo pounded to the left-center field wall. It easily scored Reynolds, as the Brewers won their second straight ten-inning game. And it was the same score as Monday's contest, which Baltimore won. Milwaukee blew a 5-nothing lead in this one with Carlos Gomez, Khris Davis, and Reynolds all belting homers in the first four innings. Former Brewers' prospect Nelson Cruz hit his Major League-leading 17th homer to help Baltimore start its comeback. The O's took the lead in the seventh when pitch-hitter Steve Pearce went yard. The Brewers forced extra innings on a Baltimore error in the ninth. Third baseman Manny Machado made a bad throw to first on a chopper from Jonathan Lucroy, and Elian Herrera scored to the the game. Francisco Rodriguez pitched a scoreless tenth to get the win. He's 2-and-1. T-J McFarland took the loss. He's 0-and-1. The Brewers and Baltimore will close out their three-game Interleague home set tonight at Miller Park. Yovani Gallardo faces O's right-hander Bud Norris.
Brewers' left-fielder Khris Davis revealed yesterday that he received a death threat that Major League Baseball found serious enough to investigate. He said it was made on Twitter in mid-May, when the Brewers were in Chicago and Davis was struggling at the plate. He told Brewers' officials, who turned it over to M-L-B's security team to handle. Somebody called "Xero Vanderbilt" wrote a racial epithet against the African-American Davis and wrote, "You family should all be killed." General manager Doug Melvin said M-L-B told the team it resolved the matter, and they gave no details to the G-M. The 26-year-old Davis is in his first full season as Milwaukee's starting left fielder. He said he was facing several distractions when he got the death threat -- and he had a meeting with manager Ron Roenicke who assured Davis that he deserves to be in the Majors -- and he offered some suggestions about batting. Davis said the skipper found out about the death threat and arranged the meeting. Melvin said such threats cannot be taken as a joke today -- and he said it had to be a distraction to Davis. Melvin also made it clear he was not a fan of social media, saying only a small percentage of it is good.
Milwaukee third baseman Aramis Ramirez took another step toward recovery yesterday, as he fielded ground balls for the first time since hurting his left hamstring. He took about two dozen grounders at third -- and he'll keep increasing that total in each of the next two days. Manager Ron Roenicke said Ramirez is recovering well, but he's not sure when he could return. It was recently mentioned he could come back early next week, after being on the disabled list since May 12th. Running the bases will be Ramirez' final obstacle. He could also do some live hitting today in a simulated game, with the little-used Wei-Chung Wang on the mound. Ramirez also said he would talk with the skipper about a possible Minor League rehab assignment -- something he passed on a year ago when recovering from a knee injury.
U-W Whitewater pitcher Scott Plaza says his school has come to expect national championships and in his words, "That's what we're going to give them." Yesterday, Whitewater won its sixth national title of the current school year, with a 7-nothing win over Emory in the title game of the N-C-A-A Division-Three baseball finals near Appleton. Plaza tossed a seven-hitter and struck out nine. He went 9-and-2 on the season and 2-and-0 in the national tournament, throwing 16 scoreless innings with 14 K's. The Warhawks sealed their victory with five runs in the second, third, and fourth innings -- plus two in the seventh for good measure. Whitewater ended the season with a 44-and-7 mark, ending with an 11-game winning streak and 19 victories in its last 20. Much has been said about Whitewater becoming the first N-C-A-A school ever to win the national football, baseball, and men's basketball crowns in the same year. They also won the national women's gymnastics crown, and both the men's-and-women's wheelchair basketball titles this year.
The Green Bay Packers' medical staff will reportedly test Jermichael Finley's injured neck today. The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel says the test could be a sign that his spinal contusion from last October has healed. Finley had vertebrae fusion surgery during the off-season -- and he made it clear that he wants to continue his N-F-L career. The veteran tight end became a free agent in March, but coach Mike McCarthy recently said that in his mind, he remains a Packer. The Packers covered themselves by placing seven tight ends on their roster -- including troubled University of Oregon tight end Colt Lyerla, who signed with Green Bay a couple weeks ago. Before his October 20th injury, Finley had 25 catches last year for 300 yards and three touchdowns in five games.
The Milwaukee Bucks' new owners are now represented on a task force that's looking into the future of the city's cultural attractions -- including a possible new arena. Sarah Watterson has been named to replace Bucks' executive vice president Ron Walter on the 48-member task force. Watterson is in charge of investor relations for the Fortress Investment Group, owned by Bucks' co-owner Wesley Edens. Walter said Edens and co-owner Marc Lasry wanted a representative on the task force, which is meeting today to discuss funding ideas to upgrade several of Milwaukee's top cultural and entertainment venues. Business people and government officials will join the task force in its discussions. The meeting begins at 8 this morning at the Milwaukee Art Museum, and is open to the public.
Former Milwaukee Wave player Giuliano Oliviero has been named the new head coach of the pro indoor soccer team. The 40-year-old Oliviero has spent the last six years as a dual player and assistant coach for the Wave under former head coach Keith Tozer, who left a few weeks ago. Oliviero is sixth on the Wave's all-time goals list with 151 -- and he ranks fifth in two-point goals with 108. He's been a part of three league championship teams with Milwaukee in 2005, '11, and '12. Former Wave goalkeeper Nick Vorberg will serve as an assistant coach. Both will be introduced at a news conference tomorrow. Milwaukee is also joining a new league this fall -- the 24-team Major Arena Soccer League. Teams from the U-S and Mexico will start playing each other in late October.