WP: Corbin Burnes (3-0); LP: Jesse Biddle (3-1); Save: Josh Hader (9); Home runs: Mil - none; Atl - Ronald Acuna (14)
Here’s that Winning Box Score!
The Milwaukee Brewers (67-53) put together half of their six hits in the top of the eighth inning to score three times and give the Crew a much needed 4-2 win over the Atlanta Braves (63-51) tonight in Atlanta. The win allows the Brewers to move back within two games of the Chicago Cubs, losers to the Nationals today at Wrigley 9-4. Milwaukee is also now a game up on the Braves in the Wild Card chase.
Milwaukee starter Wade Miley had another solid outing, going six innings and allowing the two runs on six hits, with one walk. Miley didn’t strike out a single batter. After he was staked to a 1-0 lead in the top of the first, Braves’ lead-off hitter Ronald Acuna homered to immediately tie things up. The Braves then got a single and walk, and Miley was in trouble. But a flyout and double play ended the inning. Atlanta scored their second run in the bottom of the fourth when Freddie Freeman doubled off of Eric Thames’ glove down the right field line; then Nick Markakis singled on a liner that was also deflected into short right center by Thames, scoring Freeman.
The Brewers’ first inning run came on a Christian Yelich walk, a fielder’s choice by Lorenzo Cain, a steal of second by Cain, and a two out RBI single to center by Ryan Braun. Braves’ starter Julio Teheran gave up a lead-off single to Miley in the third, then walked Mike Moustakas with two down, and hit Braun to load the bases, but Travis Shaw’s liner was directly at Freeman for the third out. Teheran pitched three more hitless innings and left with a 2-1 lead.
Corbin Burnes relieved Miley for the bottom of the seventh and allowed a two out single to Dansby Swanson and made a poor pick-off throw, allowing Swanson to get to second. Ender Inciarte pinch hit and drove a liner to left that Braun made a tremendous diving catch of to end the inning.
Braun’s run-saving catch seemed to inspire the Crew going into the eighth. Christian Yelich hit a slow roller to first leading off the inning, and Braves’ pitcher Jesse Biddle, Yelich, and the ball all arrived at the bag simultaneously. Freeman’s throw was a little behind Biddle and he couldn’t handle it, trying for a bare-handed catch. Oddly, Yelich wasn’t given a hit even though the play was very close at first...perhaps it has something to do with the chase for the batting championship.
In any case, LoCain followed with a single to center, and Moustakas followed with a two run double the opposite way to plate two and give the Brewers a 3-2 lead.
Braun’s single to right put runners on first and third, and Shaw’s grounder to short put Moustakas into a rundown, and he was tagged out. Jesus Aguilar pinch-hit for Thames and walked on four pitches to load the bases. Erik Kratz grounded back up the middle and reliever Dan Winkler stuck his glove down behind him and the ball caromed between short and third to get the fourth run home.
Josh Hader took over in the eighth and his two innings of work to earn his ninth save brought back memories of Haderade from the first half of the season. Six up, six down with three strikeouts - game over.
Chase Anderson (7-7, 3.81) goes for the Brewers and for a series win tomorrow afternoon, and the Braves go with lefty Sean Newcomb (10-5, 3.15).
- The Brewers failure to score in the third, leaving the bases loaded, had two Brewer outs on balls scorched by Yelich (a liner directly to centerfielder Acuna) and Shaw’s liner to first. It seems when things are going poorly those liners always find a glove. For one inning tonight, the eighth, those balls all fell the right way.
- Cain and Braun each had two hits, the only Brewers with a multiple hit game.
- Corbin Burnes is 3-0 with a save in his twelve appearances.