Brewers put brakes on four-game skid
By Andrew Wagner The Sports Xchange MILWAUKEE -- Sometimes, all it takes is one play, one turn of fortune to snap a struggling team out of a lengthy slump. The Milwaukee Brewers got one of those plays Wednesday night and rode the momentum to a 4-...
By Andrew Wagner
The Sports Xchange
MILWAUKEE - Sometimes, all it takes is one play, one turn of fortune to snap a struggling team out of a lengthy slump.
The Milwaukee Brewers got one of those plays Wednesday night and rode the momentum to a 4-1 victory over the Miami Marlins at Miller Park.
Milwaukee had dropped four in a row and 13 of the last 14 coming into the game Wednesday and had failed to do much through two innings against Marlins right-hander Jarred Cosart.
But shortstop Jean Segura, himself mired in a deep funk this season, opened the inning by reaching on a throwing error by his Miami counterpart, Adeiny Hechavarria, and took second when Hechavarria’s throw sailed into the Brewers’ dugout.
The Marlins, though, thought Segura missed first base on the play and Cosart threw over on an appeal play. Segura sensed an opportunity and took off for third, reaching easily.
“We appealed because in order to replay, you have to appeal first,” Marlins manager Mike Redmond said. “But he had called obstruction. Obviously, we didn’t know he had called obstruction on that play. I think he thought enough that the runner had missed first base as well to the fact that he called obstruction to protect the runner.”
That brought up starting pitcher Wily Peralta, who gave Milwaukee a 1-0 lead with a sac fly to center.
“It changed the momentum of the game,” Segura said. “A guy at third with nobody out is way different than being at third with one out.
“Wily hit the fly ball with me on third. It would have been way different if he hit that fly ball with me on second. He probably would have bunted if I was on second with one out. At that point, it changed the game.”
The Brewers added a run in the fourth inning, again on a sac fly, which gave Peralta just enough of a cushion.
He held Miami to two hits and three walks through his first six innings but allowed a solo home run to center fielder Marcell Ozuna - his third in as many games - to open the seventh, then allowed back-to-back one-out singles to catcher Jarrod Saltalamacchia and Hechavarria.
Looking for offense, Redmond sent Justin Bour to bat for Cosart and he just missed on an 0-2 fastball from Peralta (16-10), driving it to the track in center where Carlos Gomez made a running grab to preserve the lead.
“It faded away a little bit just off the end of the bat,” Bour said. “Not enough. With two strikes, I was just trying to put the barrel on the ball. Close, but not close enough.”
Brewers manager Ron Roenicke called on left-hander Zach Duke, who loaded the bases with a walk to left fielder Christian Yelich, but Broxton got the final out and pitched a scoreless eighth.
He was able to hand closer Francisco Rodriguez a three-run lead because of a home run by first baseman Matt Clark and an RBI single from Carlos Gomez in the bottom of the seventh. And a day after giving up back-to-back home runs with the score tied, Rodriguez closed the door for his 40th save of the season.
“We needed it. We needed it as a team,” Peralta said. “To go out there and give the team a chance to win, that’s huge for me and for the team. ... You’re going to sometimes go though stretches where you have bad ones, but you have to keep your head up and work on what you have to work on in the bullpen, and go out there and do the best that you can.”
The Brewers had lost 13 of their last 14 games to fall from first to third place in the National League Central, six games behind the St. Louis Cardinals and 1 1/2 behind Pittsburgh and Atlanta, which were tied for the second NL wild-card spot.
“We got some breaks today. It’s been a long time,” Roenicke said. “That helped. But we really played a good game today.”
Miami had won three in a row and four of its last five to get within 3 1/2 games of the wild card.
CREW CUTS: With RHP Henderson Alvarez set to rejoin the Marlins’ rotation Friday, RHP Brad Penny will move to the bullpen, manager Mike Redmond said. ... Brewers manager Ron Roenicke hopes to have RF Ryan Braun back Thursday. Braun was held out of the starting lineup for a second straight game as Roenicke tries to rest Braun’s sore right thumb and give him a bit of a mental break before the stretch run. ... Milwaukee recalled RHP Rob Wooten from Triple-A Nashville on Wednesday, adding an extra arm to a bullpen that has covered 10 innings in the last two games.