Brewers, Woodruff snap Pirates’ winning streak | TribLIVE.com
Pirates/MLB

Brewers, Woodruff snap Pirates’ winning streak

Associated Press
1356532_web1_1356532-95210cfc8f8a45769fd31d3555faec77
AP
Brewers catcher Yasmani Grandal tags out the Pirates’ Josh Bell at home during the first inning Saturday, June 29, 2019, in Milwaukee.
1356532_web1_1356532-8d958688cac445c19cfc8ab5d6dbb022
AP
The Pirates’ Starling Marte makes a diving catch during the seventh inning.

MILWAUKEE —Brandon Woodruff said he hasn’t thought much about the possibility of playing in his first All-Star Game.

The Milwaukee Brewers right-hander may want to start giving it some serious thought.

Woodruff cruised to his National League-leading 10th win of the season, Eric Thames homered and tripled, and the Brewers beat the Pittsburgh Pirates 3-1 on Saturday night.

Woodruff (10-2) allowed one earned run and six hits with six strikeouts in 7 2/3 innings, helping Milwaukee improve to 4-5 on its current 10-game homestand.

“You look at the numbers across the board, the guy’s legit,” Pirates manager Clint Hurdle said. “That’s the best fastball we’ve seen from him. He held it through seven innings. Slider was tight. He threw it in any count. He’s 10-2 for a reason. He’s legit.”

Woodruff’s 120 strikeouts are the fifth-highest total in the first half in franchise history, the highest since Yovani Gallardo’s 122 in 2010.

“You don’t know what to expect coming into the season but to have 10 wins before the break, that’s pretty cool,” Woodruff said.

While Woodruff hardly broke a sweat, counterpart Jordan Lyles (5-4) threw two wild pitches, hit a batter, gave up a home run and allowed three earned runs in six innings in his first start since being placed on the 10-day injured list with hamstring tightness. Lyles is 0-2 in three starts this season against Milwaukee.

“I was very encouraged by his body of work tonight,” Hurdle said. “I think he got into a good rhythm. He used all his pitches. His fastball, he used it to the four spots.”

The Pirates scored in the first when Colin Moran doubled to right to score Kevin Newman. Newman reached on a single, extending his hitting streak to 19 games, the longest by a Pittsburgh rookie in a single season since 1900.

After drawing a walk, Christian Yelich knotted the game at 1 in the bottom half, scoring from third on a failed pickoff attempt at first base. Lyles was looking to catch Ryan Braun napping, but the right-hander made an errant throw.

Thames tripled down the right-field line, scoring Braun and putting the Brewers ahead 2-1.

That was all the cushion Woodruff would need.

Woodruff retired the side in order in the second, third and fourth innings. After allowing two baserunners in the fifth, Woodruff went on to retire seven of his final nine batters.

“The biggest thing for me is to get to the point where I can get deep into games and give the team a chance to win,” said Woodruff, who exited the game to a standing ovation from the 37,821 in attendance. “Lately, I’ve been able to do that but I couldn’t do it without the guys behind me playing great defense. I just try to let those guys work.”

Thames added another run in the fourth on a solo blast to right, his 11th. Thames now has hit safely in 10 of his last 12 starts.

“My whole goal this last month has been to see the ball, trust my hands, trust my skill and just hit it,” Thames said. “I’ve been working with (hitting coach Andy Haines) a lot on off-speed pitches in the cage, on the breaking ball machine and fastballs in … Just trying to see a little of everything.”

Josh Hader retired the side in the ninth to pick up his 20th save, joining Dan Plesac as the only left-handed pitchers in franchise history to record at least 20 saves in a season.

Hader has not surrendered a run or a hit in his last eight appearances, allowing just four walks and striking out 20 in 11 1/3 innings.

“He’s on a good run right now,” Brewers manager Craig Counsell said. “It’s a lot of strikes, a lot of early swings. He’s putting the ball in good spots. He’s having a tremendous season. You guys were concerned early but he’s doing all right.”

ONE MORE TO 1K

After failing to register a hit on Saturday, Yelich remains one hit shy of 1,000 for his major league career.

“He’s doing fine,” Counsell said. “He’s had some bad luck but he took his walks today. So we’re waiting. He’ll get it tomorrow.”

TRAINER’S ROOM

Brewers: LHP Gio Gonzalez (left arm) played catch on Friday and Saturday. Counsell says he wants to see Gonzalez “get off the mound a couple times before the All-Star break.” Gonzalez is expected to be out until at least July 20. He hasn’t pitched since May 27.

UP NEXT

Brewers right-hander Zach Davies (7-2, 3.34 ERA) faces left-hander Steven Brault (3-1, 4.50 ERA) in the finale of three-game series Sunday afternoon. Davies has an 8.10 ERA over his last four starts. Brault has allowed a total of seven runs in his last five starts.

Categories: Sports | Pirates
TribLIVE commenting policy

You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.

We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.

While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.

We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers

We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.

We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.

We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.

We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.