Bosio having best year at most beneficial time

September 20, 1992|By Jim Henneman | Jim Henneman,Staff Writer

MILWAUKEE -- Not knowing where his next 3 or 4 million dollars is coming from hasn't had an adverse effect on Chris Bosio.

The robust right-hander, who set a club record with his ninth straight win and tied a career-high with his 15th win yesterday, doesn't know where he's going to pitch next year. The Brewers have all but counted themselves out of the picture, but in the meantime they're satisfied to reap the benefits.

"We're too far apart, I don't see how we could get it done," said general manager Sal Bando, who rejected a four-year proposal for almost $16 million from Bosio's agent (Doug Gilbert) during spring training. "If we were one of the big-market teams, Chris would've been signed back then."

For his part, Bosio has stated a desire to remain in Milwaukee -- and done everything possible to drive his price even further out of the Brewers' reach.

It was only four years ago that Bosio was setting a different kind of club record -- he lost 11 in a row during the 1988 season. But as difficult as it was to endure then, he says it may be the reason he's now in the record books for most consecutive wins.

"That [the 1988 season] was the biggest learning experience I've ever had as a professional," Bosio said after running his record to 15-5 by pitching the first seven innings of a 4-1 win over the Orioles.

"My earned run average that year was 3.36, which shows what can happen. I was in a lot of 1-0, 2-1, 3-2 games that year.

"It's the same thing that's happened to Bill Wegman this year," said Bosio. "He's been our best starter, hands down, and I think everybody in here [the clubhouse] would agree with that.

"The fact that I've won nine in a row is a credit to our club -- I could just as easily go out there and get shutout.

"But we have the kind of team that can get a guy on -- with a hit,

walk or error -- get him over, and take our chances. They've gotten me the lead and I've been able to hold it for six or seven innings and then turn it over to one of the best bullpens in the league. A lot of the credit for our success goes to the bullpen."

Yesterday, the Brewers got Bosio the lead by scratching out two runs in the fourth inning off Ben McDonald. The lone Orioles' run came on Chris Hoiles' 20th home run in the second inning.

"They rely on the long ball more than we do," said Bosio, "and it looked like they were trying to work me deeper into the count. I just tried to keep the ball in the park and not walk anybody."

He succeeded long enough to enable the Brewers to move into second place. It's the first time they have been that high in the standings since Aug. 20, 1989 -- and the first time the Orioles have been as low as third since April 28.

Even though he seemed to recognize the reality of Toronto's bulging five-game lead, Milwaukee's rookie manager Phil Garner didn't take the new plateau lightly. "I'm excited," he admitted. "I think the crowd might have been a factor today [yesterday] -- there seemed to be a big buzz out there."

But asked if the Brewers would now concentrate on catching the Blue Jays, Garner did a sidestep. "I don't even worry about Toronto," he said. "It's been a long run for us and there's no satisfaction stopping now -- but we've got two more games against these guys. We've got to stay focused and keep going at it."

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