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Victorino's homer lifts Phillies over Brewers

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Associated Press
April 20, 2011
— Chris Narveson was nearly unhittable and the Milwaukee Brewers were 11 outs from sweeping the Philadelphia Phillies and beating Roy Halladay and Cliff Lee on consecutive days.

Then came a fluke hit and a fly ball that kept on carrying out of the ballpark. So the Brewers settled for two out of three against the NL East-leading Phillies.


Shane Victorino hit a tiebreaking homer in the eighth inning, Placido Polanco had a three-run shot and the Phillies beat the Brewers 4-3 on Wednesday afternoon.


"Narveson was unbelievable. He just lost his command a little in the sixth," Brewers manager Ron Roenicke said.


One night after beating Halladay, the Brewers took a 3-0 lead into the sixth against Lee and were trying to complete their first ever sweep in Philadelphia. But Polanco connected off Narveson to tie the game, and Victorino then hit a long drive to deep right-center off Brandon Kintzler (1-1) to put the Phillies up 4-3 in the eighth.


Ryan Madson (2-0) pitched a scoreless eighth inning to earn the win, and Jose Contreras finished for his fourth save in four tries.


Second baseman Wilson Valdez helped Contreras by making an outstanding over-the-shoulder catch on a shallow looper to right by Carlos Gomez with one out in the ninth. Contreras then struck out Ryan Braun swinging on a 95 mph fastball to end it.


Prince Fielder had three hits and two RBIs and Jonathan Lucroy hit a solo homer for the Brewers, who tagged Lee for three runs two earned and eight hits in six innings. Lee had just one strikeout coming off a 12-strikeout shutout at Washington last Thursday.


Narveson didn't allow a hit until John Mayberry Jr. lined a double to left with two outs in the fifth. The lefty took a one-hitter into the sixth before the Phillies rallied. He left after giving up three runs and four hits in six innings.


"I located well, had good command for most of the game," Narveson said. "The thing we want to do is have quality starts and keep the team in the game."


The Brewers won the series opener 6-3 in 12 innings, despite a blown save in the ninth by closer John Axford. They battered Halladay in a 9-0 win Wednesday night, becoming the first team to beat the NL East-leading Phillies in a series this season.


Valdez got the Phillies started with a walk in the sixth. One out later, Victorino singled through the second-base hole on a perfectly executed hit-and-run. That brought up Polanco, who fell behind 0-2 before launching a drive a couple rows deep into the left-field seats to tie it 3-3. The runs snapped a 17-inning scoreless streak for the Phillies.


"I didn't think he hit it that great when I turned around," Narveson said. "But it's Philadelphia, it's Citizens Bank Park."


The Brewers became the first team to score a first-inning run against Philadelphia this season on Fielder's RBI infield single. Gomez hit a one-out single, advanced to third on Braun's single and scored on Fielder's grounder up the middle that Valdez knocked down.


Milwaukee added an unearned run in a goofy third inning.


Braun hit a two-out popup down the right-field line that Valdez dropped. Fielder then ripped a double to left-center, and Braun ran right through third-base coach Ed Sedar's stop sign and slid safely under a throw that beat him for a 2-0 lead.


Casey McGehee followed with a single to right but got caught rounding the bag to end the inning. Rickie Weeks also made a blunder that inning when he led off with a grounder down the first-base line that was a few feet foul off the bat, so he didn't run. The ball hit a cutout, rolled fair and Ryan Howard picked it up to record the out.


Lucroy lined a 1-1 cutter into the seats in left to make it 3-0 in the fourth.


Notes: Braun has reached safely in all 18 games this season. The team record to start a season is 23 by Hall of Famer Robin Yount in 1983. ... The Brewers are 15-32 in Philadelphia. ... Fielder already has five three-hit games.



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