Brewers 6, Rockies 3

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DENVER (AP)—Pitchers aren’t supposed to be effective using breaking balls and offspeed pitches in the arid air at Coors Field.

Chris Capuano didn’t have any choice without much control of his fastball.

Capuano pitched six strong innings and had his first RBI, Chad Moeller hit his first career grand slam, and the Milwaukee Brewers ended a nine-game losing streak in Colorado with a 6-3 victory over the Rockies on Tuesday night.

“I didn’t have my best fastball. I struggled with command of it and went more with my changeup,” said Capuano, who has had two stints on the DL this season. “I had a decent changeup working and had a slider. I went more with the changeup to keep them off-balance.”

It worked.

Temperatures dropped rapidly after storms moved through downtown Denver just before the game, but it didn’t seem to affect Capuano (3-3).

Though his fastball topped out in the mid-80s, the left-hander mixed in plenty of curveballs and changeups to keep the Rockies guessing most of the night.

Capuano allowed a run in the first inning on Preston Wilson’s chopper down the line in right, but didn’t allow a runner past second base over the next five innings.

Capuano gave up one run on four hits and struck out six, including four straight in the fourth and fifth innings.

“He mixed pitches effectively,” Brewers manager Ned Yost said. “He has a good changeup and slider to go with his fastball. He kept the ball down and his pitches were sinking good.”

Milwaukee had nine hits and took advantage of nine walks by Colorado’s pitchers—the Brewers didn’t swing at a pitch until Lyle Overbay hit a sacrifice fly on the game’s 18th pitch—to win in Denver for the first time since Sept. 3, 2001.

The Brewers have won three straight overall, matching their longest winning streak this season (May 11-13).

Colorado had at least two baserunners in the final five innings, but scored just two runs—on singles by Vinny Castilla in the eighth and Todd Helton in the ninth. The Rockies had nine hits and couldn’t overcome Shawn Estes’ shaky outing to lose for the fifth time in eight games.

“We were hoping for better off the mound to establish some momentum there and we were hoping for more out of our bats to establish momentum there,” Rockies manager Clint Hurdle said. “But we didn’t get either one.”

Estes (8-4) hurried through his warmup before the game and seemed to have trouble getting loose in the cool, moist air. He threw just three strikes in his first 15 pitches and walked the first three batters he faced.

“I got out to a late start tonight and I was kind of rushing through things,” Estes said. “It was obvious in the first inning, because I rushed through that inning and mechanically I was not very sound. My mind was racing and I wasn’t able to relax at all for the first inning.”

The Brewers seemed intent on letting Estes walk them around, watching 17 pitches before Overbay lifted a sacrifice to left for the game’s first run.

Estes struck out Bill Hall and got Brady Clark to ground out with the bases loaded to end the inning, but he wasn’t so fortunate in the third.

Overbay and Hall each hit one-out singles, then Estes walked Clark after Wes Helms flew out to center. Moeller followed by lifting a 1-0 pitch into Colorado’s bullpen in right-center for a grand slam that put the Brewers up 5-1.

“It was about time I got one,” Moeller said after going 784 at-bats before getting his first slam.

Estes later walked Capuano, a career .105 hitter, on four pitches. Capuano added his first career RBI in the sixth inning off Estes, a single up the sixth inning that put the Brewers up 6-1.

Estes allowed six runs on eight hits and walked six—one short of his career high—in five innings.

“Obviously, from the start things didn’t look good,” Estes said. “I was definitely out of rhythm and out of sorts for some reason or another today.”

Danny Kolb got one out for his 22nd save after Helton’s single off LuisVizcaino made it 6-3.


Colorado agreed to terms with first-round draft pick Chris Nelson. The Rockies took the high school shortstop from Redan, Ga., with the ninth overall pick in this year’s draft. … Estes has walked seven in a game six times, most recently July 14, 2001, at Seattle. … Helms was 0-for-4 in his first game off the DL. He was activated Monday after missing more than a month with a kneeinjury. … Wilson’s single in the first inning ended an 0-for-15 slump.

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