Rogers not upset by bunt that broke up no-no

Rogers not upset by bunt that broke up no-no

Rogers not upset by bunt that broke up no-no
HOUSTON -- Is it a breach of baseball etiquette to bunt to break up a no-hitter in the fifth inning of a two-run game?

Apparently not. Because nobody on either side of the Astros-Brewers rivalry seemed to mind when Houston's Scott Moore dropped a bunt single to dash a no-hit bid by Milwaukee's Mark Rogers on Friday night.

"I wasn't really thinking about [a no-hitter] that early, but I was a little bit surprised he bunted, to be honest with you," Rogers said. "I didn't expect Scott to bunt, and I've known him for a while."

In fact, they used to share an agent. Since then, Rogers and Moore have met as Minor League opponents.

"I've faced him quite a few times, and he's never bunted on me," Rogers said. "But he put down a good one. They're trying to get baserunners at that point. ... More power to him."

The Brewers were nursing a 2-0 lead in what became a 4-3 loss. Moore said he got the idea when the teams met 10 days earlier at Miller Park.

"In Milwaukee, I noticed that [third baseman Aramis] Ramirez was playing back and I tried to bunt there as well," Moore said. "It wasn't a pitch for me to bunt and I pulled it back. My first at-bat [Friday] he was playing me back again, so my second at-bat I took a peek and he was still back. It's a 2-0 game and we're trying to get baserunners, and it worked."

Was it a breach of etiquette?

"If they're down two runs, his job is to get on base," Brewers manager Ron Roenicke said.

Rogers brushed it off.

"It was a close game and they're trying to get baserunners, so I should have done a better job of getting off the mound and making a play on it," he said.

Rogers was denied his first Major League win when reliever John Axford suffered a blown save. However, the starter was pleased with a seven-inning outing in which he allowed only one run on three hits. Rogers struck out eight batters and walked two. He said Friday's outing was "the best I've felt" in the big leagues. "I felt good," Rogers said. "I worked a lot during the week on fastball control, throwing my sinker to both sides of the plate, and I think that helped me with all of the lefties in the lineup. I felt like I was able to pitch 'in' and that helped me open up the outside of the plate later in the game."

Rogers and catcher Jonathan Lucroy also changed their pitch selection as the game wore on. Rogers threw almost exclusively fastballs in his early innings, then mixed in his slider and curveball late.

"I was trying to take them off that fastball a little bit," Rogers said. "To be able to get [breaking pitches] over for strikes, that's made a big difference for me. I'm going to keep working and continue to try to get ahead of these guys with both pitches -- or all three."