Garza hits speed bump on comeback trail

Garza hits speed bump on comeback trail

MILWAUKEE - Brewers right-hander Matt Garza thought he had turned things around. Two successful outings after a difficult start to the season will do that for a pitcher.

That's until Tuesday night's 7-2 loss to the Royals where Garza surrendered 13 hits and six earned runs over 6 2/3 innings.

"They hit the ball all over the place," Garza said. "I hurt myself and that's about it. There's no other way to say it, I [stunk] tonight."

Garza will hope Tuesday's disappointing performance won't put him back at square one. The veteran right-hander got back on track beginning on May 31 when he picked up the win in relief during the Brewers' 17-inning victory over the D-backs. He followed that outing with a seven-inning, one-run gem against the Twins.

That wasn't the story, though, against the Royals as bad luck and later bad pitching ruined Garza's night.

Trouble came in the first inning when former Brewer Lorenzo Cain launched a two-run home run into the left-field bleachers. The homer came after Mike Moustakas blooped a single into short right field against the shift.

Then in the fourth, Omar Infante singled to center off Garza with Alex Gordon on first. Brewers center fielder Gerardo Parra made an attempt at cutting off Gordon at third base, but the throw skipped under Aramis Ramirez's glove, allowing Infante to scamper to second. Royals starter Chris Young plated two of his three RBIs in the next at-bat with a chopping ground ball over the drawn-in defense.

"I thought he made a mistake to Lorenzo Cain," manager Craig Counsell said. "I thought the next two runs, we had a play at third. It was a tough play, but if we make that play, we keep two runs off the board there."

"You still have to make your pitches," Garza said. "It's not perfect all of the time, so you just keep going, keep making pitches and try to wiggle out of it. Tonight, I didn't do that too well."

Garza's ERA now sits at 5.07. The two homers he allowed were the 79th and 80th against Brewers pitching in 2015, which leads the Major Leagues.

The frustration that comes with that statistic not only sticks with Garza, but the Brewers as a whole, who have lost four straight.

"We can't have nights like this," Counsell said. "How we play is important. That's one thing we can control."

"Just keep fighting," Garza added. "There's nothing left you can do. Tough times make tough people. If you're ready to cower, then just get out of the locker room. Pick your stuff up and go. We're all in it together and if you don't like it, grab your stuff and go home. We'll find someone else to grind with us."

Brandon Curry is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.