MILWAUKEE -- Brewers manager Ron Roenicke said closer John Axford was "still the guy" on Wednesday, about 12 hours after Axford suffered his third blown save in his past five chances, but cited Axford's recent heavy workload in saying he was unsure about his closer's availability for Wednesday. "He's scuffling, he is," Roenicke said. "I can't give you an answer why. For a while, it was not pitching enough, and now it's pitching too much. It changes a lot." Axford surrendered back-to-back home runs Wednesday night a few hours after his wife gave birth to the couple's second child. He could have taken the night off, but said he reported to Miller Park in the middle innings in the event of a save situation because, "It's my job -- for now, anyways."
All season, Axford has had off and on issues with command, forcing him into fastball counts. Both of the home runs he surrendered in Wednesday's loss, to Colby Rasmus and Jose Bautista, came on 3-1 counts. Axford's backup is Francisco Rodriguez, who has 292 saves, including a Major League single-season record 62 saves in 2008.