The Brewers rode two early big innings to beat the Reds 9-1 tonight. A four run first and five run third, all runs charged to Reds’ starter John Lamb, gave Jimmy Nelson his first win since May.
The Brewers lost little time in continuing to tattoo Lamb this season. Jonathan Villar singled up the middle and Hernan Perez drilled one into the third row of the leftfield seats for a 2-0 lead. Ryan Braun blooped a hit to right, and after a Jonathon Lucroy strikeout Chris Carter sliced a double down the rightfield line, scoring Braun. After Gennett flew out to left Will Middlebrooks singled to right, scoring Carter. The throw in was cut off and Middlebrooks was out at second.
Young worked through the second with a hit allowed, but never got an out in the third. Braun had his second hit, and Lucroy took advantage of a controversial foul tip call to homer deep into the left-centerfield seats. With two strikes Lucroy swung at a pitch that was a foot short of home plate, and it was ruled a foul tip. Replays seemed to show that Luc missed it, but it was hard to tell. Reds manager Bryan Price came out to dispute the call at the time, asking for help from the base umpires, but homeplate ump Bryan Wolcott said he heard the tip and refused to ask anyone.
Lamb completely unraveled at that point. He walked Carter, Gennett singled, and Middlebrooks walked on four pitches. That was enough for Price, who came out to replace Lamb with Keyvius Sampson. Price then lit into Wolcott, and was obviously looking to get tossed. Wolcott eventually obliged, although it might have been more of a punishment to force Price to stay and manage the rest of the game. Sampson’s stat line for the game ended up with no earned runs in four innings, but he allowed all three inherited runners to score in the third. After Ramon Flores fanned, Jimmy Nelson showed bunt and slapped a groundball past a charging Joey Votto for a two run single, with Middlebrooks taking third. Villar completed the scoring with his third hit in three innings, a single up the middle, to score Will.
Lamb ended up with a horrible line of 2 innings, 9 hits, 9 earned, two walks, 3 strikeouts, and two homers allowed. In three starts he is now 0-2 with 9.2 innings pitched, 18 hits, 16 runs - all earned, 6 walks, 9 strikeouts, and 5 homers allowed. His ERA is 15.65, and his WHIP is 2.61. Even so, the Brewers k’d 11 times for the second straight night. I suspect we will see this continue.
Jimmy Nelson worked seven shutout innings, allowing six hits, two walks, and seven strikeouts (5 looking). A fine start to the second half for Jimmy. Jacob Barnes gave up two hits to start the bottom of the eighth, but worked out of it with only one run scoring.
I was expecting to see Jeremy Jeffress in to get some work, but Jhan Marinez came on to finish things. Marinez hit Eugenio Suarez to lead off the inning, and Kirk Nieuwenhuis misplayed a pop-up by Ramon Cabrera into a single to put two on. Villar made two nice plays to force runners at third, leaving two on and two down. Marinez got ahead of Billy Hamilton 1-2 but walked him, bringing up Joey Votto. Votto was 4-4 coming up, but Jhan struck him out on a 1-2 fastball to end things.
The Brewers (39-50) go for the series win Sunday against the Reds (33-58), sending Zach Davies (6-4, 4.10) against Dan Straily (4-6, 4.35). Game time is 12:10 CDT.