Brewers 4, Mariners 1

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MILWAUKEE (AP)—Manager Ned Yost has reason to be optimistic in his second season with the Brewers.

Doug Davis pitched seven strong innings and pinch-hitter Bill Hall hit a two-run homer to lead the Milwaukee Brewers over the Seattle Mariners 4-1 Wednesday night.

The victory moved the Brewers to 33-29, the first time the organization has been four games above .500 since June 24, 2001, when it was 38-34. Milwaukee went 30-60 the rest of that season, was 56-106 the next year and 68-94 last season.

“I literally walk into the stadium feeling like we have a chance to win each ballgame,” Yost said. “I really don’t know if I felt like that every game last year.”

Davis (6-5) gave up Pat Borders’ first homer of the year in the third inning and not much more. The right-hander scattered five hits and allowed one walk while striking out a season-high seven.

“I felt real good,” said Davis, who has won three of four June starts. “I was breaking the 90 (mph) barrier. That doesn’t happen often for me.”

Luis Vizcaino pitched the eighth and Dan Kolb pitched the ninth for his 19th save in 20 chances.

Seattle rookie right-hander Clint Nageotte (1-2) pitched five innings, giving up two runs on three hits and three walks while striking out five. He threw 79 pitches, but was removed before the bottom of the sixth with a cramp in his pitching hand.

“The middle of my thumb was cramping up,” Nageotte said. “Unexplainable.”

The Mariners are the lowest scoring team in the AL and have managed only one run in two games against Milwaukee.

“Same story,” Seattle manager Bob Melvin said. “Certainly, we haven’t been getting it done. We’ve had some hits, but we have a hard time knocking them in.”

Milwaukee’s starters are 22-19 with a 3.90 ERA. Last year, Brewers’ starters were 39-73 with a 5.48 ERA.

“They’re up to the task right now,” Yost said of his starters. “That’s a big part of our success.”

The Brewers led 2-1 when Hall was called upon to face reliever Ron Villone in the seventh and hit his fifth homer, scoring Brady Clark to make it 4-1.

Milwaukee had only five hits, but has won six of eight.

The Brewers went up 2-0 in the first. Scott Podsednik led off with a bunt single, stole second and advanced to third on catcher Borders’ throwing error.

Junior Spivey walked and stole second. One out later, Lyle Overbay singled to extend his hitting streak to 13 games, scoring Podsednik.

Keith Ginter was hit by a 3-1 pitch and Clark hit into a fielder’s choice with the bases loaded, scoring Spivey for a 2-0 lead.

Borders hit his first home run since Sept. 1, 1999, while playing for Toronto against Minnesota to cut the lead to 2-1.

The Brewers honored Paul Molitor in a pregame ceremony. Molitor, now the Seattle batting coach, played for the Brewers from 1978-92 and will be inducted into the Hall of Fame this summer.

“I want to thank the Brewers organization for so many things,” said Molitor, who wore an old-style Brewers jacket and cap over his Marinersuniform. “I can’t tell you how much fun I had playing for the Brewers.”

Notes:@ Thursday marks one year since Kolb was promoted to Milwaukee from the minors. Since then, he has converted 40 of 43 save chances. … Milwaukee’s victory Tuesday was the 100th win for Yost, who joined the team before the 2003 season. He has a 101-123 managerial mark. … Seattle has been shut out eight times this season, tops in the AL. Montreal, which has been shut out 10 times, leads the majors. … Podsednik stole two bases and was caught stealing in the fifth, only the second time in 31 attempts he has been caught. … Coming into the game, Davis was 1-5 with a 6.36 ERA in 10 games—eight starts—against Seattle. … Davis is 0-for-31 batting this season.

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