Brandon Woodruff struck out 12, Willy Adames and Rowdy Tellez launched home runs, and Luis Urias collected an RBI single in his return from the disabled list as the Brewers defeated the Reds 6-3 on Tuesday evening.
After Urias and Kolten Wong kicked off the third inning by reaching on a fielding error and a walk, respectively, Adames put the Brewers on the board first with his three-run blast.
It was the sixth home run of the season for Adames, which leads all shortstops across baseball.
The Reds cut into that three-run lead with a pair of solo home runs off Woodruff in the top of the fourth. Tommy Pham lifted a high fastball out to right field, and former Brewer Mike Moustakas golfed a hanging curveball to right-center.
Those proved to be the only warts in what was an otherwise strong outing for Woodruff. He lasted just 5.2 innings and was charged with three earned runs, but he struck out 12 and did not issue any walks.
Woodruff became the third consecutive Brewers starter to post a double-digit strikeout total, marking a first-time accomplishment for any rotation in franchise history.
Reds starter Tyler Mahle was not as successful. He lasted 3.1 innings, allowing five runs (four earned). The Brewers made him work for those ten outs, forcing him to throw 92 pitches.
The Milwaukee bats scratched across a couple more runs for Woodruff in the bottom of the fourth thanks to an RBI single by Urias—his first hit of the season—and a sacrifice fly off the bat of Wong.
Woodruff began the sixth with a strikeout and a groundout, but Craig Counsell pulled him after he allowed a third hit to Pham. Aaron Ashby, who is back in the bullpen for this turn through the rotation due to Monday’s off day, was first on in relief. He allowed a double to Moustakas that plated the third and final run on Woodruff’s line, but he worked 2.1 innings without allowing a run of his own.
The score would remain 5-3 until Rowdy Tellez launched a solo home run in the bottom of the eighth. It was Tellez’s fifth of the year and his first against a left-handed pitcher this season.
With Josh Hader battling back spasms, Devin Williams got the call in the ninth. He closed the door with a perfect inning that featured a strikeout of Tyler Stephenson.
Counsell indicated after the game that Hader’s back is not a cause for concern and revealed that he threw a successful bullpen session earlier that day.
Josh Hader was down tonight because of some mid-back spasms. But he threw a ‘pen this afternoon and it went well, Craig Counsell said. Day to day.— Adam McCalvy (@AdamMcCalvy) May 4, 2022
The win improves the Brewers to 16-8. They will look to secure a series win tomorrow night. Freddy Peralta gets the ball opposite Vladimir Gutierrez. First pitch is scheduled for 6:40 p.m. CDT on Bally Sports Wisconsin and 620 WTMJ.