The Bucks haven't been a one-man show for a while now, but Giannis Antetokounmpo and co.'s supporting cast has stepped up in the playoffs. George Hill (9.5 points per game vs. the Pistons), Pat Connaughton (9.0 PPG) and Nikola Mirotic (7.5 PPG) made major contributions in the first round, while Ersan Ilyasova came alive during Game 3, making four 3s. Connaughton scored 18 points on 8-of-10 shooting in Game 1, while Hill scored 16 on 6-of-11 shooting. Mirotic had 12 points each in Game 3 and Game 4.
Eric Thames, Brewers first baseman (↑ UP)
He's not quite the early-season Eric Thames of 2017, when he posted Barry Bonds numbers in April, but we got a little peek at that version of the bearded slugger Sunday. Thames hit a game-tying three-run homer in the eighth against the Los Angeles Dodgers on Sunday, a game the Brewers would eventually lose 6-5. Thames hit two home runs last week, and hit another in the first inning of a game against the St. Louis Cardinals on Wednesday.
Christian Yelich, Brewers outfielder (↑ UP)
The reigning NL MVP is off to one of the hottest starts we've ever seen. He led the majors with 13 home runs entering Wednesday's game, and is hitting .330/.441/.802 through 25 games. He was robbed of a home run in that loss to the Dodgers, but was named the NL Player of the Week on Monday after hitting .417/.533/1.417 with eight home runs.
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Chase Anderson, Brewers pitcher (↑ UP)
Anderson, who made 85 starts for Milwaukee from 2016-18, couldn’t have been happy about being relegated to the bullpen. But when called upon to start, which he did April 20 against the hard-hitting Los Angeles Dodgers, he tossed five scoreless innings, allowing one hit and two walks with five strikeouts. The bad new (for Anderson, at least) is Gio Gonzalez is set to rejoin the Brewers’ rotation, meaning Anderson could well be back to the pen.
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Josh Hader, Brewers reliever (↓ DOWN)
First, the good news: Hader pitched two innings last week and all six outs were strikeouts. The bad news: He also served up two home runs, one coming on an 0-2 pitch and another to a left-handed hitter, neither of which happens very often. In fact the Dodgers’ Kike Hernandez was the first to hit one out against Hader on an 0-2 pitch and just the second when behind in the count, while Clay Bellinger was just the second lefty to go deep off Hader.
The second round of the NBA playoffs (↑ UP)
Milwaukee hasn’t seen this round of the postseason – except watching other teams on TV – in 18 years. It’s a welcome addition to 2019.