Win: Brandon Kintzler (3-0)
Loss: Ryan Mattheus (5-3)
Save: John Axford (33)
The Brewers won't move any closer in the wildcard standings, but it is through no fault of their own.
Milwaukee topped the Nationals today thanks in part to a nice start by Yovani Gallardo. Gallardo struggled with his pitch count and only managed to make it through five innings, but gave up just two runs. Gallardo gave up six hits and walked two batters while striking out five Nationals. Both runs scored in Gallardo's final inning--one on an RBI single and the other on a sac-fly.
That fifth inning tied the game at two apiece. The Brewers had previously scored two runs in the fourth inning off of Chien-Ming Wang. Ryan Braun led off the frame with a double and moved to third on a Corey Hart single after Aramis Ramirez flew out. Jonathan Lucroy singled home Braun while Logan Schafer, making his first major league start, doubled home Hart. Jean Segura reached on a fielder's choice that saw Lucroy gunned down at home and Yovani Gallardo grounded out to end the inning.
The Brewers would then take the lead again in the seventh inning thanks to another Jonathan Lucroy RBI single. Carlos Gomez followed that up with an RBI single of his own while a Jean Segura RBI groundout put the Brewers ahead by three. The Brewers, always needing insurance runs, tagged on one more run in the eighth inning with a Ryan Braun sacrifice fly after Bryce Harper, who had a tough night, committed an error on a Rickie Weeks single and let Norichika Aoki advance to third.
The umpire crew made some egregious errors in this one, including on a play that helped allow the Nationals come back in the fifth inning. Thankfully, the Brewers came right back and took a win anyway.
Rickie Weeks was 3-5 today, though he struck out twice. Braun was 2-3 with a walk, an RBI, and two runs scored. Aramis Ramirez (one run), Logan Schafer (one RBI), Carlos Gomez (one RBI) and Jonathan Lucroy (two RBI) all also picked up two hits.
The Cardinals beat the Cubs today to remain 2.5 games ahead of Milwaukee for the second wildcard. The Brewers and Nationals will go at it again tomorrow. Marco Estrada will face off with Jordan Zimmermann, with first pitch scheduled for 12:05.