Keston Hiura powers Milwaukee Brewers with 2 homers in win over Cubs

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CHICAGO — The Milwaukee Brewers desperately needed a win. But first, a prerequisite for doing so was getting Justin Steele off the mound.

In the seventh inning, the Brewers finally reached the last goal and it took them to the first.

Milwaukee jumped on the Chicago Cubs bullpen with a trio of homers, including a pair from Keston Hiura, late in the inning for a 5-2 victory Sunday afternoon at Wrigley Field.

The victory allowed the Brewers (64-56) to avoid a sweep and avoid losing seven of their last eight games against the Cubs. It also ensured that Milwaukee would be no more than two games away from San Diego for the last wildcard spot to end the day.

Steele, Chicago’s starting pitcher, left the Brewers helpless for six scoreless innings, allowing just two hits and one walk. Only one base runner reached second base against him.

The Cubs, however, opted to go to the bullpen to start the seventh despite Steele being only 89 pitches away. It was a welcome sight for visitors. Rowdy Tellez homered solo with two outs from reliever Mark Leiter Jr., then Hiura followed with a homer following a change of pitch that brought Brandon Hughes into the game.

Willy Adames put the Brewers ahead, 3-2, with a sacrificial fly in the top of the eighth against Rowan Wick and Hiura added insurance with a two-run outburst against Kervin Castro.

Hiura has had sporadic playing time this year but has produced at every turn. He leads the Brewers with an OPS of .856 after Sunday’s game and in his last 12 starts he’s hit .375 (15 for 40) with six homers.

Brandon Woodruff started for Milwaukee and gave up a pair of solo home runs, but nothing more over a solid 5⅔ innings. Woodruff rebounded from a 36-pitch first inning that included a 13-pitch at-bat opener by Nick Madrigal to keep the Brewers at shouting distance while striking out five.

The bullpen trio of Brent Suter, Brad Boxberger and Taylor Rogers combined for 10 outs with just one hit against to secure the win. Rogers made his first save with the Brewers.

After: ‘It can’t happen:’ Christian Yelich’s mistake, three missed saves sends Brewers to deflating loss at Wrigley

After: The Brewers got a critical piece behind the injured list plaque with the return of Omar Narváez

After: Wisconsin native’s home run against Josh Hader highlights former Brewers’ last tough outing

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About Marc Womack

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