He sure came close.
“We talked about it and it is a friendly competition to see what the guy in front of you did and do it better,” he said of the Brewers’ rotation.
At 10-2, the Brewers are off to their best start since going 13-0 to open the 1987 season. This is Milwaukee’s longest winning streak since a nine-game string last April.
Lohse (2-1) gave up four hits and struck out nine in 8 2-3 innings. He fanned five straight in the seventh and eighth innings.
Will Smith struck out Pedro Alvarez on three pitches to record his first career save.
Milwaukee’s rotation has been outstanding. The starters have a combined 1.80 ERA over the first 12 games, giving up just 22 earned runs.
“It is tough, but I understand,” he said. “I’ve been around long enough to know that we need to win that game and keep the momentum going. I wanted to finish it, but I know that if I wanted to I needed to get that guy (McCuthchen) out.”
“Sometimes the decisions aren’t very popular, but they’re decisions as a manager you need to make,” Roenicke said. “I thought Kyle pitched a great game. When you get to 100 pitches, that starts to put pressure on a pitcher and we’ve got a long season to go.”
Lohse had some fine defense behind him as shortstop Jean Segura made several tough plays and outfielder Logan Shafer robbed Alvarez of at least a double in the second inning when he hauled in Alvarez’s long drive just before crashing into the left field wall.
“That was huge because normally that is a double and then I have some work to do,” Lohse said.