Monday’s Game Report: Brewers 2, Cardinals 0
By Rob Rains
It was another frustrating night for Miles Mikolas – and unfortunately for him and the Cardinals, that was a not a new experience.
Making his first start since losing a no-hitter with two outs in the ninth inning, Mikolas made just one mistake on Monday night, but that resulted in a two-run homer that produced the only runs of the game in the loss to the Brewers in Milwaukee in the opening game of a four-game series.
It was similar to his start on June 9 at Tampa Bay, when another two-run homer lifted the Rays to a 2-1 victory.
In those two games, Mikolas allowed a combined total of seven hits and four runs in 14 1/3 innings, and was the losing pitcher in both games.
In his 14 starts, the Cardinals have been shut out six times while Mikolas was in the game and have been held to one run in two additional starts.
The loss dropped the Cardinals out of a first-place tie with the Brewers in the NL Central.
Here is how the game broke down:
At the plate: Milwaukee starter Corbin Burnes allowed just two hits over seven innings, both by Juan Yepez. He doubled with two outs in the second and singled with two outs in the seventh … Their only other baserunners came on walks, to Dylan Carlson in the second and Andrew Knizner in the sixth … Burnes struck out 10, after striking out 11 in seven scoreless innings against the Cardinals in his matchup with Mikolas on May 29 … In six games against Burnes since the start of the 2021 season, the Cardinals have scored four runs in 36 innings … Brendan Donovan beat out an infield hit to lead off the ninth against Josh Hader, but was thrown out trying to advance on a short wild pitch before Hader closed out the game.
On the mound: The home run allowed by Mikolas to Tyrone Taylor came with one out in the fifth, following a single. Mikolas allowed just four hits over 6 1/3 innings … Johan Oviedo got his first chance to relieve in a game when the Cardinals were trailing by two runs and he blanked the Brewers for the final 1 2/3 innings, pitching around two hits in the eighth.
Key stat: Taylor’s homer was the seventh the Cardinals have allowed this season to a ninth-place hitter. That’s more than the total allowed to the opponent’s third-place hitters (4) and fifth-place hitters (5).
Worth noting: It was the second home run Mikolas has allowed to the Brewers’ ninth-place hitter this season. Jace Peterson hit the other homer on May 29 … As expected, the Cardinals placed Tyler O’Neill on the injured list with a hamstring injury which forced him to leave Sunday’s game in Boston in the ninth inning. Lars Nootbaar was recalled from Memphis, and he is expected to used primarily as a late-inning defensive replacement … This is the second time on the IL for O’Neill this season … Jordan Hicks will begin a rehab assignment with Memphis on Tuesday night and will be on a reliever’s schedule.
Looking ahead: Jack Flaherty will make his second start since coming off the injured list on Tuesday night in the second game of the series.
Follow Rob Rains on Twitter @RobRains