MILWAUKEE (AP)—The Milwaukee Brewers haven’t had a winning season since 1992, so they’re not about to start judging the quality of their victories.
Only Damian Miller’s two-run single off center fielder Willy Taveras’s glove in the eighth gave the Brewers some breathing room, not that Milwaukee manager Ned Yost was one to quibble with his light-hitting lineup.
“It was enough,” Yost said. “It was plenty. It’s all we needed. We made good on that opportunity.”
Davis (6-5) extended his consecutive scoreless innings streak to 17 despite his wildness and he struck out seven. Jorge De La Rosa pitched the eighth and Derrick Turnbow the ninth, earning his seventh save in nine chances. Turnbow allowed the third Houston hit.
The Brewers, who have allowed a total of three runs in their last four games, have won 13 of their last 16 at Miller Park. The Astros fell to 1-6 on their current road trip and are 3-22 away from Minute Maid Park. They have been shut out seven times on the road and eight overall this season.
“It’s absolutely frustrating,” Astros manager Phil Garner lamented. “We have to find a way to stop it. You can’t expect your pitchers to throw shutouts.”
Before leaving with back stiffness, Oswalt (5-6) gave up one run and two hits in six innings. All three of his walks came in the first, when he allowed his one run but also left the bases loaded. He lost for just the fifth time in 15 starts against Milwaukee.
Oswalt said he felt a twinge when he slipped on a pitch early in the game, then toughed it out as long as he could.
“It doesn’t hurt, it’s just stiff,” he said.
The Astros left the bases loaded in the second when Oswalt made the third out on a close call at first when shortstop Bill Hall fielded his hopper and hurried an off-balance throw.
“The guys on the replay said I made it,” Oswalt said. “But (first base umpire Joe Brinkman) said I was out, so I guess it only counts on TV.”
Added Garner: “That happened in the second inning. We had plenty of time to do something and we didn’t.”
The Brewers scored their run off Oswalt when Overbay didn’t draw the relay throw at first after third baseman Morgan Ensberg had trouble getting the ball out of his glove and Carlos Lee took out second baseman Craig Biggio to break up what would have been an inning-ending double play.
Hall extended his hitting streak to a career-high eight games with a double leading off the fifth.
Brewers ace Ben Sheets, who’s been on the DL for more than a month with an inner ear problem, will return to the rotation Saturday night against the Astros, who will counter with LHP Wandy Rodriguez. The Astros originally slated RHP Ezequiel Astacio to start, but Garner said he wants to see how Astacio does in long relief. The Brewers sent RHP Mike Adams (2.70 ERA) to Triple-A Nashville to make room on the roster for Sheets.