Brewers 2, Reds 0
MILWAUKEE (AP)—The Milwaukee Brewers gave their fans their money’s worth even though they got into the ballpark for free.
By outpitching Eric Milton and combining with three relievers on a three-hitter, Glover put the Brewers (80-79) one win from their first non-losing season since 1992. Milwaukee finishes with a three-game series at Pittsburgh, where the Pirates are wrapping up their 13th straight losing season, the longest current drought in the major leagues.
“I know for each man in here, they feel the same way I do. I don’t want to be called a loser again,” Milwaukee manager Ned Yost said. “It’s important to us and it’s important to our organization.”
The Brewers finished their final homestand 7-3 to assure their final weekend would be meaningful, at least in their eyes.
“I think it would have been great if we could have won one more game somewhere along the way so that we had that 81st one here,” Glover said. “I think that would have been big for the fans to see, to get it at home.”
The Brewers aren’t thinking about taking just one game at PNC Park “because .500 is even. It’s not necessarily a winning season,” Glover said. “Everybody wants a winning season.”
So, they’re shooting for at least two out of three, if not a sweep.
Glover (5-4) surrendered just two singles, in the third and sixth inning, and didn’t allow either runner past first base. He surpassed his previous career high of eight strikeouts, accomplished Saturday against St. Louis.
Jose Capellan got two outs in the eighth but walked a batter and surrendered a single to Ryan Freel. Julio Santana struck out Felipe Lopez looking on a full-count cut fastball, and Derrick Turnbow pitched a perfect ninth for his 38th save in 42 chances.
Milton (8-15) allowed two runs and five hits in seven innings, and his seven strikeouts gave him 999 for his career.
“It was a great game pitched by everybody,” Yost said. “You’ve got to give credit to Milton, too. He really pitched a whale of a ballgame and he’s a good pitcher that struggled today. But the good pitcher in him really came out today.”
Bill Hall led off the fifth with his first of two doubles, took third on Rickie Weeks’ ground ball to second base and then tried to score on a squeeze bunt. But Chad Moeller was struck in his right hand by Milton’s fastball, forcing Moeller from the game with a bruised index finger and sending Hall back to third base.
Jeff Cirillo pinch hit for Moeller with a 1-1 count and sliced a single under the glove of Lopez, who was playing in at shortstop. Brady Clark then tripled home Cirillo, and Damian Miller replaced Moeller in the field in the top of the sixth.
Milton was glad to finish on a strong note but also eager to put his 2005 season behind him.
“I’ve been looking forward to next year for a while,” he said. “It’s one of those things: throwing the ball well and the season ending. It’s better than ending on a bad outing.”
Before the game, the Reds extended manager Jerry Narron’s contract through next season with a mutual option for 2007. Narron began the season as the Reds bench coach and was appointed interim manager when Dave Miley was fired June 21 after the team’s 27-43 start.
Narron, who is 46-43 since taking over, said he was happy with a one-year deal, considering that some shares in the team are for sale.
Mark Attanasio capped his first season as Brewers owner by giving away free tickets to the final home game and saying his expectations for next year have risen with the Brewers’ “return to respectability.”
Moeller is day to day. … Attanasio says he expects to have a long-term contract extension in place for GM Doug Melvin in the next four to six weeks. … The turnstile count was 27,008, including paid attendance of 13,173. Those fans who had already bought tickets received a voucher for a free game next year.