Milwaukee Brewers stayin' alive in wild-card race

By Andrew Wagner, The Sports Xchange  |  Sept. 28, 2017 at 10:36 PM
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MILWAUKEE -- Brett Phillips drove in the go-ahead run with an RBI single and Brent Suter struck out four as the Milwaukee Brewers stayed alive in their quest for the National League wild-card spot with a 4-3 victory over the Cincinnati Reds on Thursday afternoon in their final game of the season at Miller Park.

Suter gave Milwaukee five effective innings, allowing three runs on seven hits and a walk.

He retired his first nine batters in order and then erased a leadoff single in the fourth by catching Billy Hamilton trying to steal second. Patrick Kivlehan followed with a solo home run, giving the Reds a 1-0 lead.

Milwaukee tied it up in the bottom of the inning on a sacrifice fly by Orlando Arcia, then moved in front in the fifth when Eric Sogard singled and scored on a Neil Walker double and an error by Hamilton.

Ryan Braun kept the inning going with a single of his own, scoring Walker and giving the Brewers a 3-1 lead before Sal Romano got Travis Shaw to ground into a double play, ending the rally.

Suter retired Hamilton to open the sixth but then allowed three straight hits, including an RBI single from Scooter Gennett, before Oliver Drake took over.

He faced just one batter as Jesse Winker tied the game up with a base hit. Milwaukee turned to Jared Hughes (5-3), who loaded the bases before striking out Adam Duvall and Stuart Turner bounced into a double play to end it.

Sal Romano (5-8) got two quick outs to open the bottom of the inning but walked Arcia. That brought up Phillips, who ripped a 1-0 fastball to right, scoring Arcia and giving the Brewers the lead.

Romano struck out seven in his final start of the season and allowed four runs -- three earned -- and seven hits with a pair of walks over 5 2/3 innings of work.

Corey Knebel struck out two in the ninth to earn his 39th save.

Brewers manager Craig Counsell said before the game that he "wasn't a math guy," when asked about his team's slim chance to make the postseason but the numbers are pretty straight-forward. Milwaukee needs to win all three of its games this weekend at St. Louis while the Rockies have to lose at least two against the Los Angeles Dodgers to force a one-game playoff Monday in Denver.

NOTES: Reds CF Billy Hamilton set a new career-high when he recorded his 59th stolen base of the season by swiping second in the seventh inning. ... 1B Eric Thames was out of the Brewers lineup Thursday, still sore a night after fouling a pitch off his right foot. ... Milwaukee was also without C Manny Pina, who missed his sixth straight game because of a sprained ligament in his left thumb.

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