Brewers look to turn season around in second half
Overcoming injuries, inconsistency key to making second straight playoff appearance
MILWAUKEE -- The Brewers' 2012 began just like 2011. They were 14-20 on May 8 of last season, coming off a miserable road trip, stuck in fifth place and six games under .500.
Brewers fans know the rest of that story. The team got hot after that tough trip and wound up winning 96 regular-season games, a franchise record, and winning the National League Central, too, for its first division crown since '82.So when this year's crop got off to a similarly slow start -- the Brewers were 15-19 this time after 34 games -- more than one player expressed the sentiment that, "It's OK. We've been here before, and we can get it going again." Only the Brewers never got it going, and now find themselves facing a daunting second-half challenge. Win games in bunches, or spend October on the golf course instead of the baseball diamond. "We still have time," said right-hander Zack Greinke, whose time in a Brewers uniform could be drawing short if the team can't cobble together some winning streaks. "And hopefully that will take care of it and we'll continue to play like we can play. I feel like we've been doing good a little over a month and just haven't been putting wins together." The story of the Brewers' first half is a mixture of inconsistency and injuries, the latter undoubtedly influencing the former.
|MVP: Ryan Braun Tumultuous winter, Prince Fielder's departure have not fazed him.|
|Cy Young: Zack Greinke Will he finish the season in a Brewers uniform?|
|Rookie: Norichika Aoki Has emerged as everyday right fielder, freeing Corey Hart for first.|
|Top reliever: Francisco Rodriguez Tough choice; relief corps has struggled mightily.|
Players to watch in second half
|Jonathan Lucroy Catcher was having an All-Star season before hand injury sent him to DL.|
|Zack Greinke A free agent to be, he has a lot at stake even if Brewers don't make playoffs.|
|Tyler Thornburg After a one-start MLB debut in June, will he return to the Majors before season's end?|