Garza can't find answers for tough start

Garza can't find answers for tough start

DENVER -- Moments after another head-scratching defeat, Matt Garza still couldn't put a finger on it.

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"I don't know. I honestly don't have an answer," the Brewers right-hander said after Milwaukee's 10-4 loss on Sunday at Coors Field. "It's just a riddle. You just keep plugging away."

In what's already been a season to forget for Garza, Sunday was just another chapter. The Brewers handed him a 1-0 lead in the second, but Colorado had a 10-spot put up before the sixth inning concluded. Garza absorbed the brunt of that damage, surrendering 10 runs (seven earned) and 13 hits over just 5 1/3 frames. It was the second time this year that he surrendered double-digit hits and double-digit runs in the same start.

Until this season, that had never happened even once in Garza's 10-year career.

"Got to pick my team up," Garza said, "and I didn't do that."

To Garza's credit, not every Rockies hit was squared up well. A handful of them were broken-bat bloopers or ones that dropped just in front of the charging outfielders. Garza even went as far as saying that sometimes at Coors Field, "You ask for them to hit the ball hard."

Brewers manager Craig Counsell had a similar assessment.

"Everything fell in, and we left some outs out there," Counsell said. "He made pitches in, broke a lot of bats and they fall over the infielder's head or in front of the outfielders. It felt like he gave up four or five broken-bat hits."

But the Rockies still got plenty of hacks in. DJ LeMahieu and Troy Tulowitzki ripped two-out RBI singles in third. And Nolan Arenado jumped on a hanging curveball for a fourth-inning solo homer, which was projected by Statcast™ to land 429 feet away. Not to mention a few hard-hit pitches in Colorado's four-run sixth.

The loss is Garza's ninth, which is already the most he's had since 2011 and three away from tying his career-high set in 2009. His ERA now sits at a dismal 5.48 -- Garza hasn't finished the season with a five-plus ERA since his rookie season in 2006.

Those stats don't help in finding any answers.

"It's obviously frustrating, and I'm just trying to endure the worst year of my career so far," Garza said. "Just keep pushing. Just keep plugging and try to get better. That's about it. That's all I got."

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