MILWAUKEE (AP)Wade Miley did a little bit of everything to make sure the Cincinnati Reds crept a little closer to the Milwaukee Brewers in the NL Central standings.
He threw eight shutout innings. He made a great defensive play to preserve the lead. He doubled and scored an insurance run.
His all-around effort enabled Cincinnati’s 2-0 win at Milwaukee on Friday to snap the Brewers’ seven-game home winning streak. The Reds reduced Milwaukee’s NL Central lead to six games.
”That’s a huge win for us,” Miley said. ”That’s a big baseball game right there.”
This is the second of seven consecutive matchups between the Brewers and Reds. They’re playing a four-game series in Milwaukee this week and will meet again for a three-game set in Cincinnati immediately after the All-Star break.
The Brewers won the opener of this series 5-3 on Thursday. The Reds got a measure of revenge Friday thanks to Miley.
”It was fun for everybody to be a part of that game with the way Wade did everything tonight,” Reds manager David Bell said. ”Obviously it starts with the way he pitched. Good cutter. Good changeup. Just his energy. Guys love playing behind him.”
Miley (7-4) struck out four and allowed seven hits and three walks. But he made it clear that his favorite part of the night didn’t involve his pitching.
”The triple,” Miley said. ”I call it a triple. The triple was fun.”
Technically, it wasn’t a triple.
Cincinnati already led 1-0 when Miley led off the seventh with a double to right off reliever Miguel Sanchez and advanced to third on a throwing error by Avisail Garcia. Miley scored when Jesse Winker capped an 11-pitch at bat with his own double to right.
The only other run came in the fourth when Tucker Barnhart lined an 0-2 pitch from Brewers starter Eric Lauer (3-4) into the left-field corner for a two-out double that scored Eugenio Suarez from second.
Miley’s fielding helped preserve Cincinnati’s lead.
The Brewers had runners on first and second with one out in the fifth when Miley went to his knees to field Lauer’s bunt and throw him out at first, preventing Milwaukee from loading the bases. Miley then got out of the jam by retiring Luis Urias on a fly to right.
”I overran it, and then it was just full panic to try to get an out,” Miley said. ”I was able to kind of slide and get a glove on it, and (second baseman Jonathan) India picked me up big-time over there. I gave it everything I had to get it over there, but it bounced and India made a great play.”
Miley left after allowing a leadoff double to Avisail Garcia in the ninth on his 104th pitch. Heath Hembree took over from there and struck out Rowdy Tellez, Jace Peterson and Omar Narvaez to earn his fifth save.
Lauer struck out three, walked four and allowed four hits and one run in six innings. Over his last three starts, Lauer has worked 18 1/3 innings while allowing only two runs.
”It’s been impressive,” Brewers manager Craig Counsell said. ”He’s been big for us.”
The Brewers hurt themselves on the bases.
Peterson led off the seventh with a single but got thrown out trying to advance to second. An interference call on a slide to second by Willy Adames resulted in an inning-ending double play in the eighth.
Counsell said after the game that pitcher Freddy Peralta is replacing Brewers teammate Brandon Woodruff on the NL All-Star team. Woodruff is scheduled to pitch Sunday, which would have prevented him from pitching in Tuesday’s All-Star Game.
This is the first All-Star appearance for Peralta, who is 7-3 with a 2.23 ERA.
”It feels great, man,” Peralta said. ”I was waiting for this moment. It’s a dream come true.”
Reds: RHP Michael Lorenzen struck out two, walked one and allowed no hits over two innings to earn the save for Triple-A Louisvilleas part of a rehabilitation assignment. Lorenzen hasn’t pitched for Cincinnati all season due to a shoulder injury.
Brewers: Counsell said the team will decide Sunday on the next steps for 2B Kolten Wong, who went on the injured list July 2 with tightness in his left calf. ”It’s going to be strong workouts the next three days, test him pretty hard,” Counsell said. ”Everything is going well. The anticipation will be if it’s not the first day after the (All-Star) break, it’s going to be very shortly after.”
Vladimir Gutierrez (4-3, 4.67) pitches for the Reds and Peralta arts for the Brewers in a Saturday evening matchup of right-handers.
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