Brewers give Counsell something to talk about


After being named manager of the Milwaukee Brewers earlier Monday, Craig Counsell said the challenge of facing reigning National League MVP and three-time Cy Young Award winner Clayton Kershaw in his debut, according to, “could be a good story someday.”

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The Brewers erupted for three runs in the eighth inning against Kershaw and the Los Angeles Dodgers’ nearly impeccable bullpen to pull out a 4-3 win at Miller Park, handing Counsell a win in his managerial debut.

“You’re hoping that’s what happens on Day 1,” Counsell told “You’re hoping your closer is giving you the game ball. It’s a nice feeling. It’s one of those games you can list so many guys that played a part in it. That’s a great way to start it, getting a team win like that.”

The Dodgers led 3-0, getting a run in the first and two more in the fourth against right-hander Kyle Lohse, who allowed four hits and three walks in five innings before departing after throwing 104 pitches.

Milwaukee (8-18) finally got to Kershaw for a run in the sixth before rallying for the win in the eighth.

Hector Gomez connected for a memorable first career home run with one out in the inning, taking Kershaw deep to left-center to make it a 3-2 game and Counsell then defied the so-called managerial book.

He sent left-handed batting Adam Lind up to pinch-hit against Kershaw, perhaps the toughest lefty pitcher in the game.

Lind responded with a line-drive double to right, raising his average to a team-best .326. In 15 at-bats against left-handers, Lind has five hits this season—that after going 2-for-33 against lefties last season for the Toronto Blue Jays.

That finished Kershaw, who was replaced by right-hander Chris Hatcher.

Carlos Gomez greeted Hatcher by cracking his second pitch to left field for an RBI double to tie the game.

May 4, 2015; Milwaukee, WI, USA; Milwaukee Brewers pitcher Francisco Rodriguez (57) reacts in the ninth inning after picking up a save against the Los Angeles Dodgers at Miller Park. The Brewers beat the Dodgers 4-3. Mandatory Credit: Benny Sieu-USA TODAY Sports

Gomez advanced to third on a groundout by Jason Rogers before Ryan Braun hit a slow roller to third. Juan Uribe’s throw was a split-second late as Braun beat out the infield single to drive in Gomez with the go-ahead run.

We just had to wait a bit to learn that. Dodgers’ bench coach Tim Wallach—who took over the lineup card after manager Don Mattingly was ejected after a balk call in the third inning—challenged the ruling by first-base umpire Paul Emmel.

The New York review center, however, upheld the call and Milwaukee had the lead.

“I thought I was safe,” Braun told “I’ll take every one I can get. I feel like I’ve lined out or flown out to the wall a bunch of times. Hopefully it starts to even itself out. Run hard every play, because you never know which time it will be the difference-maker in the game.”

The Dodgers (16-9) took the lead early. Joc Pederson hit Lohse’s third pitch of the game over the wall in right-center for his seventh homer of the season to lead off the game.

Things got rocky for Lohse again in the fourth. Yasmani Grandal had an RBI single to put Los Angeles up 2-0 and Juan Uribe drove in a run with a sacrifice fly for a 3-0 advantage.

The Brewers got their first run in the sixth on the ever-so-rare back-to-back triples.

Hector Gomez led off the inning with a triple down the right-field line and pinch-hitter Gerardo Parra followed with a triple that got over the head of Peterson in center field before caroming past the outfielder off the angled wall.

The rookie Gomez—filling in for Juan Segura at shortstop—had himself a day. A triple and a homer off the best pitcher in the National League? Really?

“It’s amazing,” Gomez said.

The Brewers had only seven hits, but three of them were with runners in scoring position—something the team has struggled with this season.

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  • Michael Blazek (2-0) earned the win, working two innings and walking two while fanning three. Rodriguez worked a perfect ninth for his fifth save, striking out two and flipping the game ball to his new manager when it was over.

    Hatcher (0-3) took the loss for the Dodgers while the Brewers won their third straight game.

    The series continues Tuesday night at 7:10 p.m., with right-hander Matt Garza (2-3, 4.60 ERA) taking on former Brewer Zack Greinke (4-0, 1.93).

    Garza is in his 10th season in the big leagues, but the Fresno, Calif., native will be making his first career appearance against the Dodgers.

    Greinke, meanwhile, is 0-2 with a 4.76 ERA in four appearances, three starts, against Milwaukee in his career, but as a member of the Brewers was 15-0 with a 2.93 ERA in 23 starts at Miller Park.

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