Mandatory Credit: David Banks-USA TODAY Sports
The Brewers decided to start June with the same batting lineup that failed to register a run off Jason Hammel on the last day of May. The series decider pitched Kyle Lohse (6-1, 2.92 ERA) against Jeff Samardzija (1-4, 1.68 ERA) coming off his first win of the season against the New York Yankees. The Cubs decided to return Welington Castillo behind home plate, while Mike Olt took over duties at third.
A quick start to the first inning for Lohse, retiring the first two batters, before hitting Saturday’s two homer hero Anthony Rizzo. However, Rizzo was stranded by a Starlin Castro grounder to third baseman Mark Reynolds.
Jean Segura started the bottom of the first with a single to right, in front of Ryan Braun, who hammered a Samardzija 94mph fastball over the wall in left. A quick 2-run lead for Brewers on 4 pitches. Back to back fly ball outs to Nate Schierholz followed before Khris Davis struck out to end a profitable 1st for the Brewers. 2-0 Brewers
An highlight reel defensive play by Scooter Gennett to pick up a nasty hop on a ground out by Schierholz to start the top of the 2nd. Before two quick outs to ended a smooth inning for Lohse.
Gennett led off reaching second on a routine pop fly (scored a double) missed by three Cubs converging on the ball, before two quick strike outs for Reynolds and Lyle Overbay. However, Lohse picked up his 3rd RBI of the season with a two out base hit up the middle and Gennett scores easily. Bad luck for Samardzija, he should have been out of the inning after the strikeout by Overbay. However, Segura strands Lohse with a dribbler to first to end the inning. 3-0 Brewers
A clean top of the third inning for Lohse, while due to local thunderstorms the Miller Park roof is closing as play continues. 27 pitches through 3 innings for Lohse.
Braun starts off the bottom half with a single to left, piling pressure on the usually unflappable Samardzija. Jonathan Lucroy draws a walk before Carlos Gomez is plunked to load the bases with nobody out. Khris Davis grounds out into an odd double-play, with Darwin Barney stepping on the bag at 2nd to force Gomez, before a throw to third removes the stranded Lucroy. Brewers lucky to stay out of a triple-play with the ball bouncing just in front of Barney, while Braun scored on the play. Gennett followed up with a grounder down the left field line for a double, moving Davis to 3rd. Reynolds walked to reload the bases against the struggling Samardzija. Overbay stepped up forcing a sinker deep into left field for a three RBI double to bust the game wide open at 7-0. As the Cubs get Justin Grimm working in the bullpen, Lohse moved to 2-2 on the day with an RBI single to right, before Segura popped out to finally end the inning. 8-0 Brewers.
Junior Lake led off the 4th for the Cubs with a single to centre, before Rizzo ended his day early. Rizzo struck out before an angry exchange with crew chief Jerry Meals saw him ejected and then ushered away by manager Rick Renteria. Probably saving Rizzo from a suspension. Castro lined out to right before Lohse picked up another K to end the inning. During the interval Renteria is forced to complete several adjustments to his defence including a double switch of Chris Coghlan and catcher John Baker for Castillo and Samardzija (3IP, 8H, 8ER’s)
Grimm entered to pitch the bottom half of the inning, facing the minimum. Braun’s walk erased by a Lucroy double-play before a Gomez groundout ended the first quiet inning for the Brewers.
Lohse quickly worked his way through a 1-2-3 top half of the fifth to keep the pressure on the Cubs pitching staff.
Grimm returned for a second inning drawing three ground outs. However, Gennett continued to do damage, adding a home run to his two doubles. Golfing a slider over the wall down the right field line. 9-0 Brewers
Another quick inning for Lohse, who had really settled into a rhythm sitting down all three batters faced. Including a strike out of Junior Lake. 1 hit through six for the Cubs.
New pitcher Schlitter led off the 7th with only the second base hit for the Cubs. Castro grounded into a force out before a Schierholtz single gave a first opportunity with RISP. However, a dominant Lohse struck out Baker before a Mike Olt pop out erased any possible threat.
The Brewers repeated the bottom of the 6th against Schlitter, making it a run of eight consecutive ground outs. The end of the inning saw the Brewers remove Reynolds in favour of Elian Herrera at third base.
Lohse motored through another dominant innings in the 8th, working quickly against an overmatched Cubs line up
Schlitter after two perfect innings and a base hit was replaced by James Russell. Russell retired all three Brewers in order to give the Cubs one final chance to put up some numbers against Lohse.
Ron Roenicke used the top of the 9th to give Irving Falu an inning at shortstop replacing Segura. Lohse easily finished the game retiring the last three Cubs, including Justin Ruggiano who was pinch hitting for James Russell.
Samardzija (1-5) will pick up the loss for the Cubs, while Lohse moves to 7-1. Lohse gave himself plenty of offence in a 93 pitch shutout. The Brewers will stay at Miller Park to play the Minnesota Twins, while the Cubs have an off day before a home series against the New York Mets.
Brewers Three Stars
1. Kyle Lohse, 9 dominant innings of 3 hit ball and 2 RBI singles.
2. Lyle Overbay, for his 3 RBI double to open up the game in the 3rd inning
3. Scooter Gennett, 3-4 (2 2B’s, 1 HR)