Luis Urías drives in 3 on pinch-hit double, Brewers down Cubs 6-3

Mark Hoffman/Milwaukee Journal Sentinel
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MILWAUKEE — Pinch-hitter Luis Urias drove in three runs with a go-ahead double and the Milwaukee Brewers scored six times in the sixth inning to beat the Chicago Cubs 6-3 on Monday night.

Freddy Peralta (2-0) struck out 10 over six innings of two-hit ball for the victory. Milwaukee has won five of six, while the Cubs lost for the fifth time in six games.

After being shut out on one hit by Chicago starter Adbert Alzolay (0-2) through five innings, the Brewers loaded the bases to start the sixth. After the Cubs cut down a runner at the plate, Alzolay, who had retired 11 straight coming into the inning, gave way to reliever Andrew Chafin.

Urias, who entered 2 for 27 on the season, batted for Daniel Vogelbach and slapped a shot just inside the left-field line to clear the bases.

“You never know when you are going to get the opportunity to get into the game,” Urias said. “I was lucky to get the opportunity my teammates made for me. I was ready.”

It was Urias’ first career pinch hit in six at-bats.

“It was a huge spot in the game,” Brewers manager Craig Counsell said. “Contact helps us there even to tie the game and he jumped on a first-pitch slider and did something good with it.”

Urias later scored on a wild pitch to grow the lead to 4-1. Jackie Bradley Jr. knocked in another run with a triple and Keston Hiura added an RBI single as the Brewers sent 11 batters to the plate in the inning.

Peralta gave up just one run, a fourth-inning homer by Kris Bryant. The right-hander walked two and reached double digits in strikeouts for the fourth time in his career, the last coming in April 2019.

Peralta got aggressive and retired the next nine batters, including six strikeouts, after Bryant’s home run.

“I was so focused on that pitch and I don’t know how he hit it that great,” Peralta said. “I got mad after that one.”

Josh Hader got two outs for his first save of the season. Hader came on after Javier Baez drove in a pair of runs with a one-out double.

The Cubs announced before the game that bullpen coach Chris Young tested positive for COVID-19. First base coach Craig Driver already was away from the team following a positive test. Relief pitchers Brandon Workman, Jason Adam and Dan Winkler were placed on the COVID-19 injured list. There was no word on whether their designation was the result of a positive test or contact tracing.

The Cubs have had five hits or fewer in seven of their first 10 games.

“It feels like we’re very homer-dependent right now,” manager David Ross said. “This is too talented of a group to do what we’re doing so far. We’ve got to climb out of that.”

Alzolay gave up five runs and three hits in 5 1/3 innings. He struck out six and walked one.

Chafin allowed three runs while getting just one out. He threw a wild pitch and hit a batter.

BULLPEN SNAFU

The Brewers called on Angel Perdomo to pitch the ninth inning but after umpires intervened, the left-handed reliever was forced to leave the mound. Turns out Perdomo, who had just been recalled from the team’s alternate training site, wasn’t on the official lineup card.

“It’s our mistake. It’s an automated system now when you make a roster move, but it’s our responsibility to check the lineup,” Counsell said. “For whatever reason, he wasn’t on the lineup card given to the umpires. We were taught a lesson tonight.”

TRAINER’S ROOM

Cubs: To fill the roster spots of Workman, Adam and Winkler, the club recalled left-handers Justin Steele and Brad Wieck from the team’s alternate training site in South Bend, Indiana, while veteran reliever Pedro Strop was selected as a replacement player from the alternate site. Steele and Wieck both appeared in relief.

Brewers: OF Christian Yelich sat out after leaving Sunday’s game with back soreness. “We’re still in a day-to-day situation,” Counsell said. Bradley started in left field, replacing Yelich, for the first time since 2015. .3B Travis Shaw, who also exited Sunday’s game after fouling a pitch off his shin, returned to action.

UP NEXT

Cubs: RHP Kyle Hendricks (0-1, 3.00 ERA) tossed six scoreless innings against the Brewers last Wednesday, allowing four hits and one walk with six strikeouts. Hendricks in 9-6 with a 2.72 ERA in 25 career starts against Milwaukee.

Brewers: RHP Brandon Woodruff (0-0, 2.45) gave up one hit in seven shutout innings at Chicago on Wednesday. Opponents are batting .179 (7 for 39) against Woodruff this season.

Swanson, Olson go deep vs Scherzer, Braves take NL East lead

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ATLANTA — Dansby Swanson and Matt Olson homered off Max Scherzer, lifting the Atlanta Braves to a crucial 4-2 victory Saturday night over the New York Mets and a one-game lead in the NL East.

The defending World Series champions beat aces Jacob deGrom and Scherzer on consecutive nights to take their biggest lead of the season in the division. New York, which held a 10 1/2-game cushion on June 1, faces its biggest deficit of the year with four games remaining.

Atlanta will try for a three-game sweep Sunday night, with the winner earning the season-series tiebreaker between the teams. Even though both teams are headed to the postseason, that’s important because the NL East champion gets a first-round bye in the playoffs.

Swanson’s 24th homer, a go-ahead, two-run shot in the fifth inning, touched off a frenzy among the sold-out crowd at Truist Park, the ball sailing a few rows up into the seats in left-center to make it 3-2. Olson hit his 32nd homer in the sixth, a solo shot into Chop House seats in right to put Atlanta up 4-2.

Austin Riley led off the fourth with a double and scored on Olson’s single to make it 1-all.

Kyle Wright (21-5) gave up two runs and seven hits with one walk and three strikeouts in five innings as he won his eighth straight decision. The Braves have won 16 of his last 17 starts.

New York went up 2-1 in the fifth when Pete Alonso, Francisco Lindor and Jeff McNeil hit consecutive two-out singles.

The Mets led 1-0 in the first when Brandon Nimmo singled, advanced on a walk and a single and scored on Eduardo Escobar‘s groundout. Wright, who threw 30 pitches in the first, stranded two runners in scoring position to prevent further damage.

Scherzer (11-5) allowed a first-inning single to Riley and a third-inning infield single to Ronald Acuna Jr., who advanced to third on a fielding error by Lindor at shortstop but was stranded when Michael Harris II lined out to center. Scherzer patted his glove and pumped his fist as he walked off the mound.

Scherzer was charged with nine hits and four runs with no walks and four strikeouts in 5 2/3 innings as the Mets were knocked out of first place for only the third day all season.

The Braves have won five of the last six against New York to tie the season series 9-all, outscoring the Mets 37-16 over that stretch.

Atlanta’s bullpen, which posted a 1.70 ERA in September, got a perfect inning from Dylan Lee in the sixth. Jesse Chavez faced four batters in the seventh, Raisel Iglesias faced the minimum in the eighth and closer Kenley Jansen pitched a perfect ninth for his NL-leading 39th save in 46 chances.

Since the Braves were a season low-tying four games under .500 at 23-27 after play on May 31, they have gone 76-32, tying the Los Angeles Dodgers for the best record in the majors over that span. They were a season-worst 10 1/2 games behind the first-place Mets on June 1.

Wright, the only 20-game winner in baseball this season, hasn’t officially become the first Braves pitcher to lead the league in wins outright since Russ Ortiz had 21 in 2003, but the Dodgers’ Julio Urias has 17 and can’t reach 20 before the regular season ends.

Wright will become the first Braves pitcher since Hall of Famer Tom Glavine in 2000 to lead the majors in wins. Houston ace Justin Verlander also has 17.

Wright began the game 1-4 with a 6.75 ERA in six career starts and one relief appearance against the Mets.

The Braves, who got homers from Riley, Olson and Swanson off deGrom on Friday, lead the NL with 240 homers.

TRAINER’S ROOM

Mets: All-Star RF Starling Marte (right middle finger fracture) has yet to begin swinging or throwing. Manager Buck Showalter said Marte is experiencing less pain but not enough to take the next step in his recovery. Marte has been sidelined since Sept. 7.

Braves: RHP Spencer Strider still has not thrown as he gets treatment on a sore left oblique. Manager Brian Snitker said there is no timetable for the rookie’s return. Strider has been sidelined since Sept. 21.

NICE GLOVE

Harris ran back and jumped to catch Nimmo’s fly against the wall in center field for the first out of the third.

UP NEXT

Mets RHP Chris Bassitt (15-8, 3.27 ERA) will face RHP Charlie Morton (9-6, 4.29) as the teams conclude a three-game series.