Brewers top Pirates again on Logan Schafer’s 13th-inning hit


The Milwaukee Brewers have had the Pittsburgh Pirates’ number in September, beating them for the fourth straight time this month with a 6-4, 13-inning victory at PNC Park Thursday night.

The Pirates are now 25-35 against National League Central opponents, a large reason they trail the St. Louis Cardinals by 4½ games in the race for the division title.

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The Brewers (62-78) are 10-6 against Pittsburgh (83-56) this season.

Milwaukee took an early lead, scoring three runs in the top of the first against starter A.J. Burnett, but the Pirates tied the game in the bottom of the eighth when Corey Knebel served up a solo homer to Andrew McCutchen, the 22nd of the season for the former MVP, that knotted the score at 3-3.

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The Brewers took a lead in the top of the 12th against right-hander Radhames Liz.

Logan Schafer drew a one-out walk and Elian Herrera worked a walk one out later before Ryan Braun laced a single to center.

But Francisco Rodriguez couldn’t hold it, taking his second blown save of the season when Gregory Polanco homered to right field to lead off the bottom of the inning.

Liz (1-4) struck out pinch-hitter Nevin Ashley to open the top of the 13th, but his slider for the punchout was wild and Ashley was able to reach first.

That would be a costly mistake.

Liz struck out Domingo Santana before Jean Segura singled to right. Martin Maldonado struck out—what would have been the third out—before Schafer lined a single to left to score Ashley with the go-ahead run. Luis Sardinas added some insurance with a single to center that scored Segura.

In a role reversal, Kyle Lohse came on to save the win for Rodriguez (1-3), working around a single to get the final three outs. It was Lohse’s second save of the season and his career.

“We’re here trying to win games,” Schafer told “We know we’re not close to being in the playoffs or anything like that, but we are playing spoiler,” Schafer said. “We’re here definitely trying to pull out all the stops and get victories whenever we can.”

The Brewers got to Burnett quickly. Scooter Gennett led off the game with a double to right and moved up on Herrera’s groundout. Ryan Braun hit a slow roller to second that scored Gennett before Lind single and Khris Davis belted his 19th homer of the season, a line shot to center.

The Pirates finally got to Milwaukee starter Wily Peralta in the fifth, getting a run on Neil Walker’s sacrifice fly.

Peralta gave up a single to Jung Ho Kang leading off the bottom of the seventh and then threw two wild pitches, allowing Kang to move to third. A four-pitch walk to Starling Marte ended the night for Peralta, but Jeremy Jeffress walked the bases loaded.

After getting Aramis Ramirez to strike out for the second out of the inning, Jeffress walked Travis Snider to force in a run.

Will Smith came on and got the final out to escape any further damage, fanning Polanco.

Peralta worked into the seventh, allowing two runs on five hits with three walks and two strikeouts.

Tyler Thornburg worked a scoreless ninth and 10th, walking one and striking out two, and Cesar Jimenez worked around a hit and a walk, striking out one in the 11th.

Lind was 2-for-4 and Braun went 2-for-5 for the Brewers, who finished with 12 hits.

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  • Right-hander Jimmy Nelson (11-11, 3.86 ERA) is scheduled to start Friday at 6:05 p.m. Central for Milwaukee against right-hander Charlie Morton (8-7, 4.07).

    Nelson has dominated the Pirates in his young career, going 4-1 in five starts with a 1.72 ERA and 0.926 WHIP in 31.1 innings, striking out 33. This will be his sixth start against Pittsburgh this season.

    He lost his last outing, giving up five runs on nine hits in five innings with two walks and three strikeouts in a 6-3 loss at Cincinnati on Sunday.

    Morton is just 3-7 in 13 career starts against the Brewers, with a 4.27 ERA and 1.409 WHIP in 71.2 innings to go with 41 strikeouts. He is 1-1 in two starts this season against Milwaukee, allowing four runs in 13.1 innings.

    He has lost his last three starts, including allowing two runs—one earned—on four hits in six innings with three walks and three strikeouts in a 4-1 loss at St. Louis on Saturday.

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