WP: Oliver Drake (1-0) LP: Seung Hwan Oh (1-1 ) Save: Neftali Feliz (7) Homeruns: Mil, Jonathan Villar (4), Travis Shaw (6); St.L., Aledmys Diaz (6), Matt Carpenter (4), Jedd Gyorko-2 (6)
The Brewers won a seesaw contest in St. Louis tonight, beating the Cardinals 7-5 in ten innings. The Milwaukee pen again coughed up a lead, but three tenth inning unearned runs gave Neftali Feliz enough of a cushion to earn his seventh save. The Brewers have had a lead in 25 of 27 games this year, but tonight’s win leaves them with just a 14-13 record. They lead the Cardinals by a game in the NL Central, and if the Phillies hold on to beat the Cubs they will be tied for the top spot, percentage points behind the Cubs. (Edit: Final - Phillies 10, Cubs 2)
With the score knotted at four, Cardinal manager Mike Matheny sent his closer, Seung Hwan Oh, out for his second inning of work. Milwaukee’s tenth began with an error from Kolten Wong on a soft liner from Hernan Perez. Wong dropped it and then threw wide to first, allowing Perez to reach. Jonathan Villar sacrificed him to second, and Eric Thames was walked intentionally. Domingo Santana struck out looking, but Travis Shaw golfed a low inside slider well out to right to give the Brewers a 7-4 lead. Feliz allowed a lead off homer in the bottom of the inning to Jedd Gyorko (his second of the night), but retired the final three to earn the save.
The Brewers scored the first four runs of the game off of nemesis Michael Wacha (to be fair, all Cardinal pitchers are nemeses), beginning in the top of the third. With two down, Zach Davies singled to right. Villar followed with a no-doubt homer into the right center seats, giving Milwaukee a 2-0 lead.
In the top of the fourth Santana led off with a double inside the third base line and came around to score on a base hit to right center by Manny Pina. Their final run came across in the top of the fifth. With two down, Villar took a 3-2 walk and was plated by Thames’ double into the right center gap.
The Cards shaved the lead in half in the bottom of the fifth. Davies had worked through baserunners every inning with the help of a double play in the second and a great running catch in center by Keon Broxton on a drive by Matt Carpenter in the third. His luck ran out in the fifth - or rather, his effectiveness. Dexter Fowler lined out to Santana in deep right; Aledmys Diaz homered just over the wall in left; Carpenter homered just over the glove of Broxton in center; Gyorko lined a single to right; and Stephen Piscotty’s shot up the middle hit the mound and bounced up for Villar and he combined with Orlando Arcia for a pretty double play to end the inning.
Both teams ran themselves out of scoring opportunities in the sixth. The Brewers had Shaw lead off the top half of the inning with a single, and he was wild pitched to second. Pina, with two hits in two at bats and a .400 batting average, then bunted him to third. Pina, who hits to right very well. Sigh. Jesus Aguilar lined one to third that Shaw took off on, and Gyorko’s throw to the plate easily beat Travis. Aguilar didn’t run, presumably thinking it was a caught liner, and Yadier Molina’s throw to first easily beat him for an inning ending double play.
In the Cards’ half of the sixth, with two out and Kolten Wong on first, pinch hitter Mat Adams singled to right center. Wong slipped trying to stop while going hard around third and was caught in a rundown, which ended after about 15 throws (actually only 3).
Poor baserunning continued for both teams. The Cards’ Dexter Fowler was caught off of first on a liner directly to Villar at second in the bottom of the seventh, and Villar was picked off of first in the eighth for the Brewers.
After scoreless innings from Carlos Torres (6th) and Corey Knebel (7th), St. Louis erased the final two runs of the Brewers’ lead in the bottom of the eighth. Gyorko capped a three hit night with a homer off of suddenly struggling Jacob Barnes to pull within one, and a walk and two singles brought in Piscotty with the tying run. A double play with two on kept the Cardinals from taking the lead. All tied at four into the ninth.
Oh allowed a two out single to Broxton in his scoreless ninth, and Oliver Drake earned his first Brewer win with a spotless bottom half of the inning.
The Brewers turned four double plays on the night, while the Cardinals had three.
Tomorrow night’s contest has Wily Peralta (4-1, 5.19) going for Milwaukee against Carlos Martinez (0-3, 4.71) for St. Louis with a 7:15 start time. The game will be broadcast on FSN Wisconsin.