Luis Urías hits walk-off sac fly, Brewers nip Twins 7-6

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MILWAUKEE — The Milwaukee Brewers have displayed a flair for the dramatic ever since returning from the All-Star break.

Luis Urias delivered a game-ending sacrifice fly in the ninth inning to bring home Andrew McCutchen as the Brewers edged the Minnesota Twins 7-6. The NL Central-leading Brewers have gone 4-1 since the All-Star break. In three of those wins, they were tied or behind in the eighth inning or later.

“It’s certainly been a dramatic homestand from that perspective,” Brewers manager Craig Counsell said. “You fight to get the wins. This is an example of home games, really, just being at home and having that last shot.”

McCutchen started the winning rally with a one-out single off Tyler Duffey (2-4), who then walked Kolten Wong and Hunter Renfroe to load the bases. Urias followed with a fly ball, and McCutchen slid home head first well ahead of right fielder Alex Kirilloff‘s throw.

This came four nights after Urias hit a walk-off single in the 13th inning of the Brewers’ 6-5 victory over the Colorado Rockies. He also came up with the bases loaded in the bottom of the ninth Monday and hit a sinking liner that Colorado second baseman Brendan Rodgers snared for the final out in the Brewers’ 2-0 loss.

“Those situations are kind of important, but I just try to go out there and do the same thing I’m capable of and pretty much put the barrel on the ball and keep it simple,” Urias said.

The Rockies series also featured a 10-9 Brewers triumph in which Milwaukee erased an 8-7 deficit by scoring three in the eighth.

Urias homered earlier Tuesday and Renfroe and Wong also went deep. Renfroe has homered in four of the Brewers’ five games since the All-Star break.

Gio Urshela hit a three-run homer and Byron Buxton added a solo shot for the Twins, his 24th.

Buxton led off the game with a 449-foot drive well over the left-field wall against Ethan Small, who was making his second career start. Buxton had missed the Twins’ two-game sweep of the Detroit Tigers to rest a right knee that received a platelet-rich plasma injection Wednesday.

This game eventually came down to the bullpens.

Milwaukee’s Josh Hader (1-4) retired the side in order in the top of the ninth to gain a measure of revenge against the Twins.

Hader allowed a game-ending, three-run homer to Jose Miranda in a 4-1 loss at Minnesota on July 13. That was one of the lowlights in Hader’s slump just before the All-Star break, as the four-time All-Star gave up 12 runs in a stretch of six games.

That came after All-Star reliever Devin Williams retired the side in order in the eighth for his 28th consecutive scoreless appearance.

“It’s not just reputation,” Twins manager Rocco Baldelli said. “They go out there, you can see it, that’s the kind of game they play. They bank on winning games like that. We need to do the same. We need to find ways to win games like that, too. We have, but I’d like to make it our calling card as well. Be able to go out there and just hold the opposition to basically zero late in the game and win.”

Minnesota didn’t get the same type of relief Tuesday.

Jhoan Duran walked two batters, gave up a hit and threw a wild pitch in the eighth before working out of a bases-loaded jam by getting Willy Adames to strike out looking at a 3-2 offering.

Duffey wasn’t as fortunate in the ninth and ended his string of 13 straight scoreless appearances while the Brewers continued their recent knack for producing late-inning magic.

“We did it the hard way for sure,” Counsell said. “But it paid off.”

TWINS SIGN FIRST-ROUND PICK

The Twins announced they have signed Cal Poly shortstop Brooks Lee, the eighth overall pick in last week’s draft.

Lee batted .357 with a .462 on-base percentage, 25 doubles, 15 homers and 55 RBIs in 58 games with Cal Poly this season. He won the Brooks Wallace Award given annually to the nation’s top college shortstop.

TRAINER’S ROOM

Twins: 1B Miguel Sano returned to action Tuesday after missing nearly three months with a torn meniscus in his left knee. … OF Max Kepler is day to day with a midly displaced fracture of a pinkie toe.

Brewers: RHP Justin Topa (forearm) began a rehabilitation assignment with Triple-A Nashville on Tuesday. He threw eight pitches and retired the side in order in the one inning he worked.

UP NEXT

Chris Archer (2-4, 3.41 ERA) starts for the Twins and Corbin Burnes (7-4, 2.20) pitches for the Brewers as this two-game series ends Wednesday afternoon with a matchup of right-handers.

Brian Cashman signs 4-year contract to remain Yankees GM

Lucas Peltier-USA TODAY Sports
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SAN DIEGO — Brian Cashman has signed a four-year contract to remain the New York Yankees Senior Vice President and General Manager. The announcement was made during the first day of baseball’s Winter Meetings.

Cashman, New York’s GM since 1998, had been working on a handshake agreement since early November, when his five-year contract expired.

The Yankees were swept by four games in the AL Championship Series and haven’t reached the World Series since winning in 2009. It is the franchise’s longest title drought since an 18-year gap between 1978-96.

Cashman’s main goal during the offseason is trying to re-sign AL MVP Aaron Judge.

Judge hit an American League-record 62 homers this season with a .311 batting average and 131 RBIs. He turned down the Yankees’ offer on the eve of opening day of a seven-year contract that would have paid $213.5 million from 2023-29.

While Judge remains on the market, Cashman was able to re-sign Anthony Rizzo on Nov. 15 to a two-year contract worth $40 million after turning down a $16 million player option.

Cashman has been the Yankees general manager since 1998. He has been with the organization since 1986, when he was a 19-year old intern in the scouting department. In his 25 seasons as GM, the Yankees have reached the postseason 21 times, including four World Series championships and six American League titles.