Milwaukee Brewers manager Ron Roenicke said after Sunday’s 8-7 loss to the Arizona Diamondbacks in 11 innings at Miller Park that John Axford will remain the team’s closer despite a rocky opening week.
Axford was the losing pitcher Sunday after allowing a two-run homer to pinch-hitter Eric Hinske in the top of the 11th inning. In three appearances this season, Axford is 0-1 with a 20.25 ERA.
The Brewers’ bullpen has been busy because of a lack of quality starts from the rotation, leaving Roenicke with precious few options late in Sunday’s game. After Axford retired the side in the 10th inning against the Diamondbacks, he was asked to throw another inning and allowed a double to Cliff Pennington and the homer to Hinske before being pulled with no outs.
“If I would have got him out after the first inning, he would have had a positive thought in his mind going into (Monday) or the next day,” Roenicke said.