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Braun's 3 HRs, 7 RBI power Brewers past Phils

The SportsXchange

PHILADELPHIA -- Ryan Braun, booed all day, gave Philadelphia Phillies fans more reason to be miserable.

The embattled Milwaukee Brewers slugger, who at the start Tuesday's game had neither a home run nor an RBI, homered three times and drove in seven runs as the Brewers beat Philadelphia 10-4, spoiling the Phillies' home opener.

Braun, suspended the final 65 games of last season for violating Major League Baseball's drug prevention and treatment program, hit a three-run homer in the third inning and a solo shot in the fourth, both off Philadelphia starter Kyle Kendrick (0-1).

Braun added a three-run blast in the eighth off reliever Brad Lincoln.

"I didn't think there was any chance I could have a day like this," said Braun, who is also battling a chronic thumb injury. "The game works in mysterious ways. It's kind of crazy sometimes."

Braun went so far as to say he enjoyed the catcalls from the Philadelphia faithful, which began when he was introduced before the game and resumed every time he came to the plate.

"I love it," he said. "It's great. Seriously, as a competitor, I really do enjoy it. ... I try to use it to my advantage. As a competitor, I think the more hostile, the more enjoyable it can be."

As Brewers manager Ron Roenicke said, "Those guys that can turn it up, you don't want to mess with them."

It was the second time in his career that Braun hit three homers in a game. He also did so on April 30, 2012, against the San Diego Padres. The RBI total tied a club record and was a career high for Braun, who went 3-for-5 to raise his average from .150 to .240.

Catcher Jonathan Lucroy also had three of Milwaukee's 15 hits. Shortstop Jean Segura, center fielder Carlos Gomez and second baseman Scooter Gennett had two each for the Brewers (5-2), who won their fourth straight.

Brewers starter Kyle Lohse (1-1), an ex-Phillie, scuffled through five innings for the victory, allowing three runs and seven hits while striking out four and walking five. He was followed to the mound by four relievers.

Kendrick, whose career-long losing streak was extended to six, also lasted five innings, allowing nine hits and six runs (four earned). He struck out three and walked two. He last won on Aug. 11, 2013.

"He wasn't as sharp as he was (previously)," Phils manager Ryne Sandberg said. "But, to me, the overall story of the game was we didn't execute in a lot of ways."

Philadelphia made three errors and left 11 men on base.

"Obviously, it's still early," Phillies first baseman Ryan Howard said. "That's the game of baseball. There are going to be mistakes. Everybody makes mistakes. ... We had mistakes, and they made us pay."

Shortstop Jimmy Rollins went 2-for-4 and drove in two runs for the Phillies (3-4), who were without second baseman Chase Utley because of the flu.

Philadelphia broke on top courtesy of center fielder Marlon Byrd's RBI infield single in the first, a hard-hit one-hopper off the chest of Segura, but the Brewers tied it when first baseman Mark Reynolds singled home Lucroy in the second.

Bruan hit his three-run homer in the four-run third, when Milwaukee assumed a 5-1 lead. His solo homer, a two-out, opposite-field blast to right center, came one inning later.

Philadelphia scored single runs in the fourth and fifth, on a double by Rollins and a single by third baseman Cody Asche, respectively, to make it 6-3.

Rollins also followed center fielder Ben Revere's leadoff triple in the sixth with a single, cutting the gap to 6-4, but Revere dropped Reynolds' two-out fly to deep center in the seventh, allowing left fielder Khris Davis to score from first.

Gomez led off the Milwaukee eighth with a double, and after Segura was hit by a pitch, Braun hit Lincoln's first offering, a slider, into the left field seats, making it 10-4.

NOTES: Former Phillies LHP Jamie Moyer, now a broadcaster for the team, threw out the ceremonial first pitch as Hall of Fame LHP Steve Carlton, who took a bow, stood nearby. ... The three homers by Brewers RF Ryan Braun gave him 214 for his career and moved him into sole possession of third place on Milwaukee's list, two ahead of Geoff Jenkins. ... Braun also made a diving catch of C Carlos Ruiz's liner to end the second, with two Phils aboard. ... It was the second consecutive year that pitcher Kyle Kendrick started Philadelphia's home opener. He absorbed a 13-4 loss to the Kansas City Royals last season. ... The Phillies last won their home opener in 2011, and are 3-8 in such games at Citizens Bank Park.

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