Nick Lodolo shut down the Brewers’ lineup for the second time this month and Matt Bush allowed the decisive home run as Milwaukee lost 2-1 to the Reds on Sunday.
Hunter Renfroe continued his mashing ways at Great American Ballpark this season, putting the Brewers on the board 1-0 with a solo home run to open the second inning.
That would be the only time a Brewer crossed home plate all afternoon, although they threatened for a couple more runs in the same inning.
Tyrone Taylor punched a ground ball to the left side that would have gone through the hole and scored two runs, but Keston Hiura failed to evade the ball as he ran to third. The ball hit him for the third out of the inning.
Lodolo allowed one baserunner the rest of the way, issuing a walk to Hiura in the fifth. In six innings, he held the Brewers to one run on four hits with six strikeouts and one walk.
Freddy Peralta’s velocity was strong in his return from the injured list, but it took him 44 pitches to complete two scoreless innings.
Aaron Ashby was first out of the bullpen to help cover what was expected to be a short start by Peralta, but he was even less efficient.
In the fourth inning, he allowed a leadoff base hit, issued two walks, and hit Austin Romine with a two-strike slider to plate a run and tie the game at 1-1.
Peter Strzelecki was next out of the bullpen and extinguished the fire by getting Jonathan India to pop out.
After Strzelecki returned to work a scoreless fifth inning, Trevor Gott and Brad Boxberger each put up zeroes of their own.
With the game still deadlocked, Craig Counsell turned to setup man Matt Bush in the eighth, but he allowed a solo home run to Spencer Steer to make it 2-1.
The Brewers went down in order against Reds closer Alexis Díaz to seal the loss.
A sweep would have been a boon to Milwaukee’s chances of sneaking into the postseason. They’ll have to hope for a Phillies or Padres loss to avoid falling to 3.5 games back with nine left to play.
The Brewers get tomorrow off before a homestand to finish the regular-season schedule.
Adrian Houser will start opposite Miles Mikolas on Tuesday in the first of two contests against the Cardinals. First pitch is scheduled for 6:40 p.m. CDT.