Brewers manager Ron Roenicke isn't put off by Yovani Gallardo's 5.05 ERA. Rather, the skipper referred to the right-hander as one of Milwaukee's starting pitchers "we can count on."
The bar hasn't been set very high, considering Milwaukee's rotation has a 5.58 ERA, highest in baseball. Gallardo will look to chip away at that number when he takes the hill on Wednesday at home against Oakland veteran Bartolo Colon.
Gallardo is 4-5 and coming off a win in his last start, despite giving up five runs over 5 2/3 innings at Philadelphia.
"I guess when I say 'count on him,' I think with what he's doing, I see better from him, and I think this is going to continue and he's going to be the guy that we've had before," Roenicke said. "You're right, this year [he has not been] the guy I would say we could count on like I would have said in the past."
Gallardo's recent victory snapped a four-start losing streak.
Colon, on the other hand, has enjoyed four straight quality starts. He allowed five hits in a shutout of the White Sox in his last outing.
"He's doing everything he always does," teammate Josh Reddick said about Colon, who has a 1.55 ERA in his last four appearances.
In 11 starts this season, Colon is 6-2 with a 3.33 ERA.
Athletics: Reddick tweets apology to Astros employee
Reddick made a public apology on Tuesday after inadvertently hitting an Astros employee in the face with sunflower seeds last weekend. The woman contends Reddick hit her on purpose. She wrote a letter of complaint to the A's and, after hearing nothing back, released it to the public on Monday.
"It had come to my attention [by a clubhouse manager], so we had spoken about it," manager Bob Melvin said on Tuesday. "He feels bad about it. Nothing was done maliciously. He's just trying, in his way, to have a little fun, and based on where we were and the proximity of it, he didn't know he was going to hit somebody. But he feels bad about it. It wasn't intentional."
Reddick's apology came on Tuesday via Twitter: "For all of you who know or have heard about my sunflower seed incident in Houston. All I was trying to do was have fun with the mascot. I flip seeds in every stadium at the mascot. It was just unfortunate that I hits n employee throwing tshirts. I am deeply sorry for what I've done. It will not happen again"
Brewers: Francisco starts at first base
Juan Francisco made his first big league start at first base in his Brewers debut on Tuesday. He was errorless in the field and went 0-for-2 with a walk.
"Of course I'm a little nervous, having never played it," Francisco said through a translator before the game. "I'm hoping I'll get the nerves out and calm down."
The Brewers acquired Francisco in a Monday trade that sent left-hander Thomas Keeling to Atlanta. Francisco can also play third base while Aramis Ramirez continues to come back from an early-season knee injury.
"This is a much better opportunity, because there are more opportunities to play here, first or third," Francisco said.
• Milwaukee won Tuesday's game, 4-3, in dramatic fashion. In the 10th inning, Carlos Gomez took off from first and scored the winning run on Yuniesky Betancourt's double to right-center. Oakland won on Monday, 10-2, setting up Wednesday's rubber game.
Mark Emery is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.