A Minute in Maryvale: 3.1.17

We’ve made it to March, Sky Sox fans. We’re that much closer to Opening Day 2017 here in the Springs and therefore that much closer to finding out who will make the Opening Day roster as a member of the Sox.

For the time being, the Cactus League calendar has flipped a new page, revealing a full month’s worth of exhibition games during Spring Training 2017. Not only does the 1:05 MT first pitch marks the first matchup against an NL Central rival it’s also the first game of the spring featuring the legendary voice of Brewers broadcaster Bob Uecker.

The 46th-year broadcasting veteran returns to his post on the Brewers Radio Network, which can be heard online at http://www.wtmj.com.

Brewers 3, Reds 2

Lucas Erceg’s walk-off RBI single in the bottom of the ninth capped off a Cactus League pitcher’s duel, as Milwaukee defeated Cincinnati, 3-2, Wednesday afternoon at Maryvale Baseball Park in West Phoenix.

The Brewers’ second round draft pick of 2016 grounded the one out game-winning hit to right field off Reds reliever Ariel Hernandez (0-1), scoring Mauricio Dubon after the young shortstop prospect walked to lead off the ninth inning.

Cincinnati (0-6) jumped out to a quick lead two batters into the game, thanks to a solo home run from Zack Cozart. Brewers starting pitcher Chase Anderson settled down and retired the last two batters of his one inning of work, ending his day with one strikeout and the one hit.

Milwaukee (2-3) quickly responded, scoring two runs within the first three batters off former OKC Dodger Lisalverto Bonilla. Keon Broxton answered Cozart’s shot with a solo homer of his own–his first of Spring Training. After a Jonathan Villar double down the right field line, Scooter Gennett ripped a RBI single to score Villar and give the Brewers their first lead of the day.

Tommy Milone and Jacob Barnes pitched scoreless innings of relief in their first appearances of the spring, but Cincinnati tied the game in the fourth inning off Neftali Feliz. Scott Schebler led off the fourth inning with a single and was quickly driven in on a double to left field by Eugenio Suarez one batter later. Feliz settled down and retired the side with Suarez on third base to keep the score tied.

The two division foes engaged in an old-fashioned pitcher’s duel for the remainder of the game. Rob Schaill, Andy Oliver, Brent Suter and Aaron Wilkerson all threw one scoreless inning and struck out a batter, with Paolo Espino (1-0) throwing a scoreless final frame.

The Cactus Crew heads back on the road Thursday afternoon, traveling 20 miles northwest to the Peoria Sports Complex for a 1:10 MT contest against the Mariners. Veteran pitcher Matt Garza takes the hill for the first time in 2017 against Seattle’s Ariel Miranda.

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