Roenicke pleased with Gonzalez's scoreless eighth

Roenicke pleased with Gonzalez's scoreless eighth

PHOENIX -- Brewers manager Ron Roenicke was pleased to see the Michael Gonzalez on Friday that he'd heard about all winter.

Gonzalez, one of the Brewers' key bullpen acquisitions, worked around some bad luck in the eighth inning to deliver a scoreless inning against the Cubs that Roenicke viewed as the veteran's best inning yet. Roenicke had been somewhat concerned about Gonzalez's velocity this spring.

"Better," Roenicke said. "I thought the ball came out a lot better. He threw some good sliders, threw some nice changeups. So, I was encouraged by his outing."

Gonzalez was in trouble after the Cubs' Scott Hairston hit an infield single to shortstop, where Yadiel Rivera made a clean play and threw a one-hopper to first base, where Blake Lalli could not hold on. After a Brett Lillibridge strikeout, Starlin Castro dropped a single into a perfect spot in center field, right between three Brewers defenders.

Gonzalez recovered by striking out Anthony Rizzo -- a key moment, considering he will be called upon to face tough left-handed hitters during the season -- and ended the inning by getting Alfonso Soriano to pop out.

Adam McCalvy is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Brew Beat, and follow him on Twitter at @AdamMcCalvy. Carrie Muskat is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.