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Late chance missed in Brewers 3-2 loss to Cardinals

Miles Mikolas shuts down Brewer bats

MLB: St. Louis Cardinals at Milwaukee Brewers
Benny Sieu-USA TODAY Sports

WP: Miles Mikolas (8-2); LP: Jeremy Jeffress (5-1); Save: Bud Norris (14); Home runs: StL: Yadier Molina, 2 (11); Mil - none

Just another box score

The Milwaukee Brewers (45-31) couldn’t wake their bats up in the late innings and overcome a Cardinals one run lead like they did last night, as St. Louis Cardinals’ (39-36) starter Miles Mikolas righted the ship after a rough first inning and totally shut the Brewer bats down en route to a 3-2 late afternoon win at Miller Park.

Milwaukee put up two runs off of Mikolas in the bottom of the first, taking advantage of a hit batter (Lorenzo Cain...again) and a walk to load the bases after a lead-off bloop single by Eric Thames and a fielder’s choice from Christian Yelich. Yesterday’s hero Jesus Aguilar drove one to the wall in right for a sac fly, and new Brewer Brad Miller blooped a single of his own into left to drive in the second run.

Mikolas gave up a lead-off hit to Manny Pina to start the second, and then really settled in. Brewers’ starting pitcher Chase Anderson bunted too hard back to Mikolas for a fielder’s choice. Thames bounced into an inning ending double play, and Mikolas retired the next thirteen in a row (for fifteen in a row total) until a one-out walk to Miller in the seventh.

Hernan Perez bounced a double play ball to short but Jedd Gyorko’s relay throw to first went into the dugout, sending Hernan to second. Matheny chose to go with fireballer Jordan Hicks, and Perez stole third on a throw that got away from Matt Carpenter...but not far enough to allow the runner to advance. Pina bounced out to second (good throw, Gyorko!) to end the threat.

Anderson’s pitching line doesn’t look too bad, but he had trouble locating his fastball all day, and ended up walking four in five innings. None of them scored, but the location issues did cost him the lone run he allowed. After falling behind 3-0 to Yadier Molina leading off the second, Anderson grooved a 3-1 fastball and Yadi hit it out to right center.

In his five innings, Chase had just two swinging strikeouts...and seven called strikeouts. He allowed just two hits, but was close to 100 pitches when Craig Counsell pinch-hit for him in the fifth.

Jeremy Jeffress was first in for Milwaukee and it did not go well. Marcell Ozuna singled leading off the sixth and Molina hit his second homer of the game into the Cards’ bullpen, bouncing it off of the top of the wall just out of the reach of the glove of right fielder Thames. JJ retired the next three, Taylor Williams struck out all three that he faced in the eighth, and Adrian Houser allowed a one-out walk but got a double play on a grounder up the middle with the runner going to erase Ozuna and Molina in the eighth.

Houser stayed on for the ninth and had a quick 1-2-3 inning.

The Brewers had a golden chance to take the game back in the bottom of the eighth, collecting two singles and two hit batters (that is four in the last two games by the play-it-the-right-way Cardinals), but no runs. After Eric Sogard led off the inning with a base hit Thames hit into his second double play of the day to leave nobody on with two down. Lefty Austin Gomber then hit Christian Yelich up and in on his fingers on the bat, and Gompers was replaced by Sam Tuivailala.

Ryan Braun had an infield hit, and Travis Shaw took a 2-2 slider off of his foot to load the bases. That brought up Aguilar, but this time Jesus could manage just a grounder to short to end the inning.

Milwaukee went quietly this time in the ninth against Bud Norris, with a one out infield hit by Perez erased on a game-ending double play to short from Pina.

Lorenzo Cain left the game after four innings for the Brewers with tightness in the groin. Stay tuned to BCB for updates on the severity of the situation.

The Crew will have to win tomorrow afternoon to take the series from the Cards. The Brewers will go with Jhoulys Chacin (6-2, 3.18) and will face the Redbirds’ Luke Weaver (4-6, 4.69).