The Milwaukee Brewers got six solid innings from Matt Garza and broke open a close game with a four-run outburst in the eighth inning on the way to a 9-3 win over the Pittsburgh Pirates at PNC Park on Saturday.
The Brewers (37-26) had a 4-3 lead heading into the top of the eighth when they got things cranking against lefty reliever Justin Wilson.
Rickie Weeks pushed the first run across on a fielder’s choice grounder to shortstop and then stole second base to put runners on second and third. Jean Segura reached on an infield single to short, scoring Gennett for a 6-3 Milwaukee lead.
The Brewers added an insurance run in the ninth. Gomez hit a tapper back to the mound that Gomez threw away, with Gomez reaching third on what was ruled an infield hit and an error. Irving Falu followed with a sacrifice fly to center.
Milwaukee took an early lead with a first-inning run, thanks to some sloppy fielding by the Pirates (29-32), who committed a whopping five errors on the day—three of them coming in the first inning.
Jean Segura reached when shortstop Jordy Mercer booted a ground ball. Pittsburgh starter Edinson Volquez (3-5) threw to first on a pickoff attempt, but Ike Davis dropped the ball, then compounded the error by throwing wildly to second base.
Segura ended up at third and scored on Jonathan Lucroy’s sacrifice fly.
Pittsburgh took its only lead in the third off Garza (4-4) with a two-run single by Pedro Alvarez.
But the Brewers came back with three in the top of the fourth. Lucroy led off with a single and one out later, Aramis Ramirez was hit by a pitch. Khris Davis lined a ball to left field that hopped the wall, scoring Lucroy, but Ramirez had to stop at third.
Gennett was intentionally walked to load the bases and Lyle Overbay made Volquez pay by lining a single to center to score a pair of runs. They were Overbay’s first road RBI since April 29.
The Pirates got a run in the sixth when Mercer grounded into a double play, with Alvarez scoring from third.
Garza got credit for a quality start, working six innings and allowing three runs on six hits and surviving five walks while fanning just one. Rob Wooten worked a scoreless seventh, allowing a hit and recording a strikeout. Will Smith walked one and fanned one in the eighth and Brandon Kintzler surrendered a hit and logged a strikeout in the ninth.
Davis and Lucroy each went 2-for-4 for the Brewers, who had nine hits. Davis continued to swing a scorching bat—he is 13-for-35 with 10 RBI in his last 10 games, raising his average from .244 to .265 during that span.