Brandon Woodruff was on his way to his third straight quality start after coming back from the IL. Unfortunately, a terrible seventh inning flipped the tables on the game, and the Brewers ended up losing 4-3.
The game started out very well for the Brewers. Woodruff was on the mound and was as strong as he has been. He retired the first 13 batters in a row to start the game. It was broken up by a Yoshi Tsutsugo double in the fifth inning, and the Pirates got another walk in the inning but did not score. They also walked twice in the sixth but could not drive anyone in.
Meanwhile, the Brewers backed up Woodruff with some offense. Luis Urias homered in the second to give the Brewers a 1-0 lead. They tacked on a run in the fifth after Andrew McCutchen drove in Christian Yelich with a single. Keston Hiura singled to bring in another run that was aided by a throwing error from Ben Gamel, allowing Urias to score. That gave the Brewers a 3-0 lead after six innings.
However, in the seventh inning, it all started falling apart. The Pirates started out the inning with singles from Tsutsugo and Kevin Newman. Oneil Cruz brought them in with a double that ended Brandon Woodruff’s day. Brad Boxberger entered to protect the lead, and started out well by striking out Bryan Reynolds looking (which led to Pirates manager Derek Shelton getting ejected). Josh VanMeter batted next, and hit a fly ball to Christian Yelich in left field. Yelich secured the out and threw the ball back in to try to prevent a run from scoring, but Boxberger missed the catch and the run scored, cutting the lead to 3-2. The next batter, Ben Gamel, put the Pirates ahead with a two-run home run, and the Brewers now faced a 4-3 deficit.
The Brewers did respond right away as Willy Adames doubled and Rowdy Tellez singled to start the bottom of the inning. Andrew McCutchen struck out, then Kolten Wong grounded out to first and Willy Adames tried to score, but was thrown out at the plate. Luis Urias struck out to end the inning and the Brewers failed to capitalize.
After that, the Brewers weren’t able to put together another threat. They went down in order in the eighth and ninth to end the game, losing 4-3.
Woodruff pitched well for six innings, but pitching into the seventh ended up hurting him. His final line was six innings pitched, three runs allowed, four hits allowed, three walks allowed and nine strikeouts. Three of the four hits and all three of the runs came in the seventh inning. Boxberger allowed a run in an inning of work out of the bullpen. Hoby Milner and Jandel Gustave each pitched scoreless innings to keep the Brewers in the game.
Willy Adames went 3-for-5 to leave the offense, and Keston Hiura added a 2-for-4 day. The Brewers offense did outhit the Pirates 9 to 5, but a 2-for-13 day with runners in scoring position stopped the Brewers from putting up more runs.
The rubber match takes place tomorrow afternoon as the Brewers try to finish their last homestand before the All-Star Break with a win. Eric Lauer will face Jose Quintana on Freddy Peralta bobblehead day. First pitch is at 1:10 PM.