Brewers starting pitcher Freddy Peralta was having very little trouble with the Cubs’ lineup. So little trouble, in fact, that he had a no-hitter going through six innings. The only baserunner he allowed had reached via walk and, thanks to a caught stealing the same inning, Peralta had only faced the minimum of 18 hitters in his six innings.
Heading to the seventh, Brewers manager Craig Counsell removed Peralta from the game in favor of reliever Matt Bush.
Just like that, the Brewers had gone from looking at a no-hitter to trailing.
Peralta had thrown 82 pitches through his six innings. His season high is 102, so even if we look at the matter from this perspective, the odds of him throwing another three no-hit innings without extending sizably past his season-high workload were very low. That had to have entered Counsell’s mind.
Of course, the bigger factor was surely the long-term health of Peralta. He missed time last season with a shoulder injury and was out between May 22 and Aug. 3 this season with another shoulder issue. This was his fifth start since returning and he worked up to 95 pitches last time, but Counsell is juggling a lot right here. With a complete game so unlikely for Peralta, the decision to pull his pitcher with a no-hitter going was made by the veteran manager.