Posted April 24, 2012 on
AP on Fox
Los Angeles Dodgers
Ryan Braun broke out of his slump with a homer and three hits, Zack Greinke remained unbeaten at Miller Park the Milwaukee Brewers held off the Houston Astros 6-5 on Monday night.
Braun also singled in a run and doubled to end a 2-for-20 slide. Greinke struck out a season-high nine in six solid innings to improve to 13-0 at home with Milwaukee, which won its 10th straight against the Astros.
Greinke handed Jose Veras a 6-2 lead to start the seventh, but five of the next six Astros batters reached base. Houston scored three runs on four hits, including Brian Bogusevic's two-run triple, before Veras struck out Jose Altuve and got pinch-hitter Matt Downs to ground out to end the inning.
Francisco Rodriguez pitched a 1-2-3 eighth. John Axford earned his 46th consecutive save and third this season with a scoreless ninth.
Greinke (2-1) won his first career start at Miller Park against the Astros and kept his streak alive Monday.
Lucas Harrell (1-1) took the loss in his first start at Milwaukee and second against Greinke.
Greinke allowed eight hits. He walked two but had three big strikeouts in the fifth when he worked out of a jam.
Since joining the Brewers, the 2009 AL Cy Young Award winner is 13-0 in 18 starts at Miller Park - the longest home winning streak in the majors.
With the victory, Greinke improved to 3-0 overall against the Astros. He was unbeaten in two starts at Houston last season.
Braun, who came into the game in a 2-for-20 slump, hit a solo shot in the fifth. It was his third homer of the season. He also singled in the first and doubled in the seventh.
In the Houston fifth, after consecutive singles put runners at the corners with nobody out, Greinke struck out Jed Lowrie and J.D. Martinez. Carlos Lee singled to load the bases. Greinke walked Bogusevic to force in a run, then fanned Chris Johnson to end the threat.
Harrell allowed five runs and five hits in five innings.
The 26-year-old right-hander's first career start against the Brewers came Sept. 2 at Minute Maid Park. He went 5 1-3 shutout innings but eventually lost 8-2 to Milwaukee and Greinke, who allowed nine hits and two runs in six innings.
Brandon Lyon took over for Harrell to start the sixth. The first five batters reached base, but the Brewers could only push across one run on a wild pitch.
It could have been worse for Lyon, but Lee and catcher Jason Castro stopped the threat.
With one out and the bases loaded, Rickie Weeks fouled out to Lee, who caught the ball with his back to the plate. The first baseman turned and fired a strike to Castro, who was blocking the plate. Mat Gamel plowed into him with his left shoulder in a rough collision at the plate, but Castro hung onto the ball to end the inning.
The Astros went ahead in the first on Lowrie's first homer of the season, but the lead didn't last long. Milwaukee moved in front in the bottom half as Braun, Aramis Ramirez and Corey Hart each drove in a run.
Norichika Aoki, who started in center for the slumping Nyjer Morgan, walked, went to second on wild pitch and easily scored on Braun's single. Braun came home on Ramirez's triple. Hart drove in Ramirez with a sacrifice fly.
Gamel tacked on a run for Milwaukee with a sacrifice fly in the fourth.
Jordan Schafer doubled in the third and has reached base safely in all 17 games, the longest stretch by an Astros player at the start of a season since Craig Biggio began 2000 with a 17-game streak.
NOTES: Greinke also beat the Astros 2-1 in Houston on June 23, 2009, with Kansas City. ... Lowrie's home run was the first allowed by Greinke in 18 innings this season. ... Schafer, whose grand slam helped the Astros rout the Los Angeles Dodgers 12-0 on Sunday, had a tough first at-bat. He fouled a 90 mph fastball off his inner right calf in the first and then spent several minutes walking off the pain. He stayed in the game and doubled the next time he was up.
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