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Brewers fall to Royals 6-4 after bullpen gives up lead

The offense staked Corbin Burnes to a 3-2 lead, but the bullpen couldn’t hold it.

Milwaukee Brewers v Kansas City Royals Photo by Ed Zurga/Getty Images

Box Score

With Corbin Burnes on the mound, the Brewers were able to give him some run support tonight. Unfortunately, the bullpen wasn’t able to hold the lead.

The game started off well enough. Kolten Wong led off the game for the Brewers with a double, then advanced to third on a groundout from Christian Yelich. Omar Narvaez followed with a single to score Wong, and the Brewers gave Burnes a 1-0 lead before he even threw a pitch. Burnes came out and had a clean first inning. However, in the second with two outs, Kelvin Gutierrez hit a single, and Michael A. Taylor hit a home run to left center field, putting the Royals ahead 2-1.

The Royals lead didn’t last long. In the fourth, Jackie Bradley Jr. hit a two-out home run to right, tying the game at 2-2. Then, in the sixth, Avisail Garcia led off the inning with a double, then advanced to third on a Travis Shaw groundout. Bradley then drove in another run, hitting a fly ball to center field that was deep enough to score Avisail Garcia, putting the Brewers ahead 3-2.

As the Brewers offense gave Burnes some run support, he was as strong as usual. The second inning was the only inning he got into any trouble, and was stellar beyond that. In six innings pitched, he allowed just those two runs on two hits, while striking out nine batters (increasing his season total to 67) and recording just his second walk of the season. It was his seventh consecutive game with 9+ strikeouts, which is tied for the second longest streak in MLB history.

J.P. Feyereisen came in for the seventh to defend the lead, but it was lost quickly. On the first batter he faced, he allowed a solo home run to Jorge Soler, tying the game at 3-3. From there, the inning didn’t get better, as Kelvin Gutierrez singled and Michael A. Taylor walked. The Royals went small ball from there, using a sacrifice bunt by Cam Gallagher to advance the runners, and a Nicky Lopez single put the Royals ahead 4-3.

Brad Boxberger took the eighth to keep the Brewers in the game, but the bleeding continued. Salvador Perez singled with one out, and then advanced to second on a Boxberger wild pitch. That allowed Hanser Alberto to single and drive in Perez, increasing the Royals lead to 5-3. After Alberto advanced to third on a line out by Jarrod Dyson, Taylor worked the count full before drawing a walk on a wild pitch that allowed Alberto to score, and the Royals lead was up to 6-3.

The Brewers did try to rally in the ninth. A throwing error by Whit Merrifield allowed Bradley to read base, and Wong drove him in with a double to cut the lead to 6-4. Yelich then drew a two-out walk to bring the go-ahead run to the plate, but Narvaez struck out to end the game.

On offense, Kolten Wong led the team with a 3-for-5 day, and Omar Narvaez added a 2-for-5 day as well. Jackie Bradley Jr. went 1-for-3 with two runs driven in as well. In his second game back Christian Yelich was 0-for-2, but did draw three walks.

With this loss, the Brewers are below the .500 mark (21-22) for the first time since April 8, and are 5-12 in the month of May. They’ll get another day off before starting a three-game series this weekend in Cincinnati. Adrian Houser will face Jeff Hoffman in the first game of that series. First pitch is at 6:10 pm.