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No, Yovani Gallardo still isn’t an option for Game 6 of the NLCS on Sunday

Oct 15, 2011, 10:50 AM EDT

Yovani Gallardo Getty Images

Brewers manager Ron Roenicke said before last night’s game that Yovani Gallardo wasn’t an option to start Game 6 on Sunday and he isn’t wavering now that his club is facing elimination.

According to Tom Haudricourt and Todd Rosiak of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, Roenicke confirmed that Shaun Marcum will indeed make the start as scheduled, thus saving Yovani Gallardo for a potential Game 7 on Monday.

“Yes,” Roenicke said when asked if Marcum would make the start Sunday at Miller Park. “I’m not going to bring Yovani (Gallardo)┬áback (on short rest).”

Marcum’s struggles date back to the final month of the regular season, but he has allowed 12 runs on 14 hits in 8 2/3 innings over his first two postseason starts. While Roenicke has mostly chalked his poor performance up to some bad luck, one thing we do know is that Marcum isn’t throwing his changeup nearly as often as he did during the regular season. He threw the pitch 8.9 percent of the time in Game 3 of the NLDS against the Diamondbacks and 15.2 percent of the time in Game 2 against the Cardinals on Monday. Widely regarded as the best pitch in his arsenal, he threw the pitch 24.8 percent of the time during the regular season.

As I noted yesterday, this will likely be an all-hands-on-deck situation if Marcum gets into any early trouble. Chris Narveson only faced one batter on Friday, so he would likely be the first arm out of the bullpen if they need multiple innings.

  1. paperlions - Oct 15, 2011 at 11:57 AM

    They have to win both games, why compromise the ability to win the 7th one by bringing a guy back on short rest? That may not increase their ability to win game 6, and then they have either Marcum or another guy on short rest (Wolf?) to face Carpenter in game 7.

    • Bryz - Oct 15, 2011 at 12:22 PM

      This is the kind of mantra that drives me nuts sometimes. Managers sometimes play for the scenario that is uncertain to happen while ignoring the scenarios that are certain to happen. Saving the closer for save opportunities instead of using him in the middle innings to get out of a jam is a good example, and Roenicke is doing the same thing with the Marcum/Gallardo decision. He’s saving Gallardo for Game 7, but there won’t be a Game 7 if Marcum pitches terrible in Game 6. Of course, Roenicke could just quick hook Marcum and depend on the ‘pen for most of the game, though, and then he would have Gallardo available for Game 7.

      I just think it makes more sense to get to Game 7 first and then start worrying about your options for best winning the game. No sense to prepare for a game you’re not even guaranteed of playing.

      • paperlions - Oct 15, 2011 at 12:28 PM

        This is not the same thing as saving a closer for an opportunity that may not arise, because Gallardo would not be on full rest…so….what makes you think Gallardo on short rest is a good idea….the Cardinals have hit him hard his entire career, including 8 hits and 5 walks in just 5 innings earlier in the series. Pitching Gallardo on short rest could just as easily give the Brewers a worse chance of reaching game 7 than pitching Marcum does….and in recent history, guys pitching on short rest in the post season have been horrible.

    • Kyle - Oct 15, 2011 at 1:13 PM

      Totally agree.

  2. drmonkeyarmy - Oct 15, 2011 at 12:30 PM

    It would be a mistake pitching Gallardo on short rest would be a big mistake. He has never started on short rest before…now is not the time to find out if he is able to. Furthermore, unless you bring Wolf back on short rest (which he has done once with poor results), you are still stuck with Marcum in game 7. To compound the problem, if Marcum would pitch Game 7 he would be matched up with Carpenter. If I am the Brewers, I’d much rather take my chances in Game 6 with Marcum v Jackson. Way more likely that Marcum gets the better of Jackson and Gallardo gets the best of Carpenter than Gallardo getting the better of Jackson and Wolf/Marcum getting the better of Carpenter.

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