CHICAGO -- Word is finally spreading through the Brewers' pitching ranks that they have a chance to break baseball's all-time single-season strikeout record, and pitching coach Rick Kranitz said he hopes the bid does not become a distraction.
"I don't want to see guys try to get strikeouts," Kranitz said. "They are a product of strike one and strike two. ... But when the situation dictates it, we've got guys who know how to strike guys out."
He added: "I'm just as happy with a shutout with no strikeouts and no walks. I don't want to get caught up in all that [strikeout talk]. That's why you have a defense out there."
After striking out 11 Cubs in a 4-1 win on Tuesday, the Brewers have a big league-best 1,115 strikeouts in 2012 and were on a pace for 1,411 strikeouts this season. The record belongs to the 2003 Cubs, who, with a starting staff anchored by power arms Kerry Wood and Mark Prior, struck out 1,404.
The Brewers had trailed the 2003 Cubs' pace until a run of eight consecutive double-digit strikeout games that began Aug. 20, the longest such streak in the Majors since 1900, according to Elias.