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Ortiz homers, Wilson pitches six scoreless as Brewers defeat Rangers

Joey Ortiz Milwaukee Brewers Joey Ortiz - The Canadian Press

MILWAUKEE (AP) — Joey Ortiz hit a tiebreaking homer in the fifth inning to put Milwaukee ahead for good and Bryse Wilson threw six shutout innings in the Brewers' 3-1 victory over the Texas Rangers on Tuesday night.

Wilson (5-3) entered the game to start the third after Hoby Milner — normally a reliever — worked the first two innings. Milner became the 13th different pitcher to start a game for the Brewers this season, matching the Miami Marlins for the most of any team.

The six-inning stint matched Wilson’s longest of the season. He struck out four and allowed three hits and no walks as the Brewers improved to 19-5 in their last 24 home games.

Wilson said spending last year as a reliever helped him adapt to coming in behind an opener.

“With the experience in the bullpen last year, having an opener doesn’t affect me at all,” Wilson said.

Ortiz led off the fifth by sending a 2-2 pitch from Andrew Heaney (2-9) over the left-field wall for a 2-1 lead. The homer was the seventh for Ortiz, who said he has benefited from getting consistent playing time in his rookie season.

“It kind of just brings a comfortability,” Ortiz said. “It helps me get locked in, seeing my name in the lineup every day.”

Texas scored in the first inning against Milner, who was making his first career start. The left-hander allowed back-to-back hits against left-handed batters, as Corey Seager doubled and came home on Josh Smith’s single.

The Brewers tied the game in the third when Jackson Chourio’s two-out single brought home William Contreras, whose leadoff double went off the top of the center-field wall.

Ortiz then put Milwaukee ahead with his homer. Heaney (2-9) struck out four and allowed two runs, six hits and two walks in five innings.

The Brewers won despite leaving 10 men on base, and that inability to produce with runners on kept the game close.

Milwaukee got three walks against Brock Burke in the sixth, but Dane Dunning came out of the bullpen and caught a soft liner from Contreras to end the threat and keep the score at 2-1.

But the Brewers got an insurance run an inning later when Rhys Hoskins hit a slow roller to the left of second base that got past Seager and into shallow center for an RBI single. The two-out hit scored Christian Yelich from second after he had reached on a leadoff single.

Milwaukee's Elvis Peguero worked the ninth for his second save in four opportunities. Peguero got the call in the ninth after usual closer Trevor Megill had pitched each of the last two days.

“Our pitching did a great job of giving us a chance to win, making pitches with runners in scoring position,” Rangers manager Bruce Bochy said. “But you've got to knock in some runs, and that was missing tonight.”


Rangers: 3B Josh Jung had accompanied the team to Milwaukee for the start of this series, but he has since returned to Texas to undergo more evaluation on his right wrist. Jung broke the wrist in early April and hasn't played since.

Brewers: C/DH Gary Sánchez was scratched from the starting lineup due to left calf tightness. ... LHP Robert Gasser has undergone his Tommy John surgery. Brewers manager Pat Murphy estimated Gasser will have 12-14 months of recovery time.


RHP Nathan Eovaldi (4-3, 3.14 ERA) will start for the Rangers when this three-game series concludes Wednesday. The Brewers haven't yet announced a starter.