Adoring Brewers Faithful Send Off Heroes In Style

Ryan DonahueContributor ISeptember 30, 2008

In ecstatic roars emanating from the crowd, the 2008 Milwaukee Brewers were sent off as heroes to the team’s first playoff series in 26 years at the Summerfest grounds in Milwaukee yesterday September 29.

"Twenty-six years," closing pitcher Salomon Torres boldly proclaimed to Brewers faithful. "You've waited 26 years, and you can wait no more!"

Torres pitches 3.49 and has gone 7-5 in his last 12 games.

The Brewers have named Yovani Gallardo as the starting pitcher for Wednesday’s game against the Phillies.  This will be Game One in the best of five National League Division Series.

Gallardo returned from the DL on the September 25 game against the Pirates in which Ryan Braun hit his first game-winning grand slam of his career. The game was tied 1-1 from the fourth when in the 10th inning and bases loaded with two outs Braun hammered the ball high over left field into the jubilant crowd.

Gallardo, who has been kept from pitching with a torn ACL in his right knee will be squaring against Phillies pitcher Cole Hamels who has a 3.09 ERA and 196 SO this season.

"He might be a rookie on paper, but he's not a rookie in his heart," Dale Sveum said of Gallardo. "He's an 'ahead of his time' young man."

The beast himself, Mr. CC Sabathia will take the mound in Thursday’s game. The left-handed pitcher has gone 11-2 with an ERA of 2.7.

"It's the fans here that gave me the motivation for going 'all in,'" general manager Doug Melvin said. "I want to thank CC for that trade. It made up for all of the bad ones I've made."

“It’s unbelievable…the fans have been so supportive of us all year. It just makes you feel that all the hard work you put into this game pays off,” all star Ryan Braun said. “It’s really cool to have the opportunity to sit back and reflect on what we just accomplished and to see how much it really means to this city.”

“It’s a fantastic day for Brewers fans—it’s a fantastic day for Milwaukee. It’s something we’ve waited for for a long time,” mayor of Milwaukee Tom Barrett said.