CHICAGO -- The Brewers were going on their 287th consecutive game Thursday without a starter logging a complete game, and you might be surprised to learn that the drought does not bother manager Ron Roenicke one bit.
"I don't see what the importance of complete games are when you have six or seven relievers down there," he said. "Now, certainly, if they've been used every night and you need a break, that would be good. But if a [starter] goes eight [innings], to cover one should be nothing for a bullpen."
Since Yovani Gallardo pitched all nine innings of an April 5, 2011 win over the Braves, the closest the Brewers have come to a complete game was Zack Greinke's scoreless, nine-inning outing against the White Sox on June 22. The Brewers won, 1-0, in 10 innings.
No other Brewers starter has worked into the ninth inning this season. Ten times, including the Greinke gem, has a starter worked into the eighth -- Mike Fiers four times, Greinke three times, Gallardo twice and Shaun Marcum once.
The Brewers are one of three teams -- the Cubs and Rockies are the others -- without a complete game this season.
"I'm comfortable with it," Roenicke said. "With the way it has evolved in the bullpen with closers and set-up guys, you have that for a reason. You have that because once you get to that point, you feel like you have the game won. Last year, we were so successful once we got to the eighth, ninth innings, and I know that other teams felt like the game was over.
"If you have that out there, and they're not overused, why not feel good about going there? Later in the game, a pitcher gets up in pitches to 110, 120, that's when they're more apt to make a mistake and get hurt."