Avisail Garcia has proved to be a surprising power source for the Milwaukee Brewers, who begin a four-game series against the visiting Arizona Diamondbacks on Thursday.
The 29-year-old right fielder has settled in as the team’s cleanup hitter after batting .290 with seven home runs and 21 RBIs over his last 28 games.
Garcia has a team-high 10 homers after going deep twice in 181 at-bats during last year’s shortened season.
Milwaukee had its five-game winning streak snapped with Sunday’s 10-7 loss to Detroit and will look to return to the win column against struggling Arizona.
The Diamondbacks fell for the 15th time in their last 17 games on Tuesday, when Madison Bumgarner lasted two innings in a 7-6 loss to the New York Mets.
Bumgarner, who gave up five runs on eight hits, exited with left shoulder discomfort and will undergo an MRI.
Milwaukee is 8-3 against NL West opponents but will need to adjust without center fielder Lorenzo Cain, who landed on the 10-day injured list on Tuesday with a right hamstring strain.
Cain’s injury could result in more playing time for Jackie Bradley Jr. and Tyrone Taylor, who was recalled from the minors on Tuesday.
Bradley was 6-for-73 with 30 strikeouts in May, but manager Craig Counsell remains confident in the 31-year-old veteran.
“Jackie’s going to get a big opportunity here and he’s going to be in there most nights, for sure, and we’re going to count on him,” Counsell said. “We’re going to need Jackie to produce. It’s been a struggle. But we’ve got to keep believing in him and supporting him and helping him and know that he’s going to turn the corner. There’s too much to believe that he’s not going to turn a corner.”
Bradley could be in the lineup against Arizona starter Jon Duplantier (0-0, 7.71 ERA), who made his season debut last Thursday. Duplantier gave up four runs on seven hits over 4 2/3 innings against St. Louis.
The 26-year-old right-hander was making his first major league appearance since Sept. 29, 2019, after missing all of last season due to injury.
Duplantier was recalled from Triple-A Reno after going 1-0 with a 7.71 ERA in two starts covering seven innings.
The Brewers will turn to left-hander Brett Anderson (2-3, 4.18), who received a no-decision after allowing two runs (one earned) over 3 1/3 innings against Washington last Saturday.
The 33-year-old is 1-2 with a 4.57 ERA in six road starts this season compared to a 1-1 record and 3.38 mark in two starts at American Family Field.
Josh Reddick is 6-for-11 with two homers against Anderson, who is 1-2 with a 4.15 ERA in six career starts versus Arizona.
Reddick has delivered in his first 13 games since joining the Diamondbacks, batting .362 with seven RBIs in 48 at-bats.
“He’s always ready to compete at the best level he can,” manager Torey Lovullo said. “That’s contagious.”
Arizona has also received a boost from center fielder Ketel Marte, who belted his fourth homer in Tuesday’s loss. Marte is 12-for-35 with two homers and seven RBIs over his last nine games.
–Field Level Media