Mark Reynolds snapped out of a long slump with three hits, including a pair of home runs, and Kyle Lohse pitched into the seventh inning as the Milwaukee Brewers completed a three-game sweep of the reeling Cincinnati Reds with a 5-1 victory Wednesday at Miller Park.
For Milwaukee (57-45), it’s the first series sweep since taking three from the Colorado Rockies in Denver June 20-22. It’s also the Brewers’ third straight win after a 16-game stretch during which they were just 3-13.
Cincinnati (51-50) lost its sixth in a row.
The game was scoreless until the top of the fifth as starters Lohse and Mike Leake traded zeroes. Through four innings, the Reds had managed just two hits while the Brewers had five but couldn’t turn them into anything.
Milwaukee didn’t wait long to respond. Lohse got things started with a one-out single and then came around to score when Carlos Gomez dropped a triple into the right-field corner that just dropped out of the reach of a diving Jay Bruce. One out later, Ryan Braun reached on an infield single that allowed Gomez to score.
In the bottom of the sixth, Rickie weeks doubled to left to lead off the frame and after a ground out, Reynolds blasted the first of his two homers to left field to put Milwaukee up 4-1.
Reynolds added his second long ball in the bottom of the eighth off reliever Jumbo Diaz. Reynolds, while hitting just .207/.300/.402 after his 3-for-4 day, is now tied with Khris Davis for the club home run lead with 16.
Reynolds’ 3-for-4 came on the heels of a stretch where he had been 3-for-38.
Lohse (11-4) worked 6.2 innings and allowed just a run on four hits, walking two and fanning three.
The ninth belonged to former first-round pick Jeremy Jeffress, who made his first appearance for the Brewers since Oct. 1, 2010, and lit up the radar gun.
Jeffress hit 97 mph on his first delivery and touched three digits while retiring the side in order in the ninth. He threw 15 pitches, 11 for strikes, and 12 fastballs that were between 97-100 on the radar gun.
Jeffress’ contract was purchased from Triple-A Nashville on Tuesday.
The game was also significant for Aramis Ramirez, as it was his 2,000th big-league game.
The Brewers opened their lead over the St. Louis Cardinals back to two games pending the outcome of St. Louis’ home game with the Tampa Bay Rays Wednesday night.
Gomez and Jonathan Lucroy were each 2-for-4 as Milwaukee pounded out 12 hits.
The Brewers open a four-game series with the New York Mets at Miller Park at 7:10 p.m. Thursday. Matt Garza (6-7, 4.04 ERA) takes the ball for Milwaukee, facing off against right-hander Dillon Gee (4-2, 2.92).