Brewers Avoid Sweep With 8-5 Win Over The Nationals: 5-Run Sixth Dooms Nats

Mark Hirsch

Washington's Nationals had a 4-1 lead after five and a half, but the Milwaukee Brewers put together a five-run bottom of the sixth inning against Taylor Jordan and Fernando Abad and added a run in the seventh in a sweep-avoiding 8-5 win over the Nats in Miller Park.

Kyle Lohse gave up just one run on four hits in eight innings against Washington in the nation's capital in early July, and before this afternoon's start against the Nationals he'd given up just one earned run in his last 19 innings of work on the mound over three starts against the Miami Marlins, San Diego Padres and Chicago Cubs. The Brewers' 34-year-old right-hander's second start of the year against the Nats began with a 12-pitch, 1-2-3 inning of work in the finale of the three-game weekend set in Milwaukee, Wisconsin's Miller Park. Taylor Jordan completed a 10-pitch bottom of the opening frame with some help from Nationals' left fielder Bryce Harper, who caught up to Brewers' catcher Jonathan Lucroy's fly to left-center and caught it before falling forward onto the rich Midwestern warning track dirt. 0-0 after one.

Jayson Werth and Ian Desmond, one out apart, were both hit by pitches by Kyle Lohse, putting two runners on to start the second on the Brewers' right-hander's first two HBPs of 2013. Brewers' RF Logan Schafer leapt at the wall but missed a fly to right by Steve Lombardozzi, but he got close enough to hold the Nationals to one base each, loading them up with one down. Kurt Suzuki came through with a single to right-center in the next at bat that gave the Nats a 2-0 lead and they went up by three on a safety squeeze by Taylor Jordan that bounced straight up off the plate before Jonathan Lucroy misplayed it on what should have been an out at home. E:2, 3-0 Nationals. 34-pitch inning for Lohse.

Ian Desmond made a slick barehand play to field a weak grounder off Carlos Gomez's bat and a strong throw to first for the first out of the Brewers' second, but Caleb Gindl flew to left field on the first pitch he saw for a one-out, opposite field triple off of Taylor Jordan. Juan Francisco battled for seven pitches before grounding out to first to bring Gindl in from third for the Brewers' first run of the game, 3-1. Jordan's got the third out of the inning on a fly to right by Jeff Bianchi to end a 19-pitch second that had him at 29 total after two.

Kyle Lohse's first walk of the game put Ryan Zimmerman on to start the third inning. Jayson Werth appeared to get hit on the hand by a fastball inside that home plate ump Gary Darling called a foul ball and a strike. Darling's call put Werth behind 0-2, but he worked the count full before popping up to right for what should have been out no.1 of the inning. Brewers' second baseman Scooter Gennett and right fielder Logan Schafer let it fall in for a hit, however, and the Nationals had two on with no one out. Lohse's 65 pitch of the game was a 3-2 fastball that got Adam LaRoche swinging for the first out of the frame and his 69th got a double play grounder out of Ian Desmond to end a 23-pitch inning by Milwaukee's right-hander.

A 2-1 change to Scooter Gennett got Taylor Jordan a swinging K and out no.1 of the Brewers' third. Kyle Lohse took a 3-2 fastball for a called strike three. Logan Schafer flew out to right on a 1-0 changeup and the Nationals' starter had a quick, 12-pitch, 1-2-3 third and 41 pitches overall after three. 3-1 Nats.

Steve Lombardozzi lined to left and slid in headfirst at second with a hustle double in the first at bat of the fourth. Kurt Suzuki's swinging bunt moved Lombardozzi over to third, but a weak grounder by Taylor Jordan and a weak liner by Denard Span, both to Brewers' shortstop Jean Segura, ended a scoreless bottom of the fourth with the score still 3-1 Nats. Jean Segura flew to left field where Bryce Harper caught the first out of the Brewers' fourth. Jonathan Lucroy grounded to first for the second out of the inning. Jordan fell behind Carlos Gomez 3-0 and walked the Brewers' outfielder, breaking a streak of seven-straight batters set down. Caleb Gindl's fly to left made it 7 of 8 and 12 of 14 Brewers' retired by the Nationals' right-hander. Still 3-1 Nationals. 18-pitch inning for Jordan, 59 total in four innings pitched.

Ryan Zimmerman singled to left with one down, lining a 3-1 slider from Kyle Lohse over the infield and out Caleb Gindl. Jayson Werth was 1 for 1 w/ a HBP and 6 for 8 in the series when he sent a sharp grounder up the middle to start a 6-3 DP on a sliding play by Brewers' shortstop Jean Segura. Milwaukee first baseman Juan Francisco sent a sharp grounder out to short for the first out of the home-half of the inning. 13 of 15. Jeff Bianchi sent a weak roller Ian Desmond's way for out no.2. 14 of 16 set down. But Scooter Jennett doubled to left-center for the Brewers' second hit of the game in 4 2/3 IP by Taylor Jordan. Rickie Weeks pinch hit for Kyle Lohse after 93 pitches in five innings, but popped up to Steve Lombardozzi in foul territory off first to end the fifth. Jordan's 12-pitch inning had him up to 71 overall after five. 15 of 18 Brewers retired.

Adam LaRoche's home run last night left him 1 for 7 in two games in Miller Park and just 2 for 30 with a double and a home run over his last eight games. He was 0 for 2 today before he got hold of a full-count fastball from Brewers' right-hander John Axford and hit a solo home run to deep right field to make it a 4-1 game in Miwaukee. HR no. 16 of 2013 for LaRoche. 3 for 33 in his last nine games. Axford got three quick outs after the home run. 4-1 in the sixth.

A single by Logan Schafer, double by Jean Segura and a walk to Jonathan Lucroy loaded the bases in the Brewers' sixth after 13 pitches by Taylor Jordan. Carlos Gomez's sac fly to right made it a 4-2 game and ended Jordan's day after 85 pitches. Fernando Abad gave up an infield single by Khris Davis that brought Jean Segura in to make it 4-3, and Juan Francisco hit a grounder by first that appeared to be foul but was ruled a hit and a game-tying double. 4-4 game in Miller Park and Davis and Francisco both scored on a bloop single to center by Jeff Bianchi that made it a 6-4 Brewers' lead after six.

Anthony Rendon took a 2-2 slider from former Nats' lefty Mike Gonzalez to deep left field for a leadoff blast in the seventh that made it a 6-5 Brewers' lead, but Gonzalez and right-hander Brandon Krintzler held it there and got Milwaukee out of the inning with the lead. Logan Schafer singled to right to start the bottom of the second and stolen base and wild pitch moved him around to third. One out later, Ryan Zimmerman made a silly diving play and strong throw on what did, however, count as an RBI groundout. 7-5 Brewers after seven.

Jayson Werth was 7 for 10 in the series and 2 for 3 today after an opposite field single off Brandon Kintzler in the top of the eighth, but a swinging K by Adam LaRoche and 5-4-3 grounder off Ian Desmond's bat ended a quick, 10-pitch inning with the Brewers' two-run lead in tact. 7-5 after seven and a half in Miller Park. Khris Davis reached on an error by Ian Desmond, took second on a groundout by Juan Francisco and scored on a squeeze to make it an 8-5 game after eight in Milwaukee.

Jim Henderson came on to save it in the ninth. Chad Tracy K'd swinging for out no.1. Kurt Suzuki flew to left for out no.2. Anthony Rendon? HBP. The Nats got a runner on with two outs, but Denard Span went down 0-2 and grounded out to second to end it. 8-5 Brewers.

Nationals now 54-57

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