MILWAUKEE (AP) Ryan Braun had three hits, including a home run, to lead the Milwaukee Brewers to a series sweep with a 4-2 win over the Chicago Cubs on Thursday.
The Cubs rode a three-game win streak into Milwaukee but struggled mightily at the plate during the series, scoring just four runs in three games. The last time the Brewers swept the Cubs in Milwaukee was May 3-5, 2005.
For the Brewers, it was the team’s first game since losing All-Star second baseman Rickie Weeks to a severe ankle sprain. Weeks, injured Wednesday while beating out an infield hit, was placed on the 15-day disabled list before the game.
Shaun Marcum (10-3) pitched six innings to win his third straight for the Brewers, giving up two runs on seven hits. LaTroy Hawkins and Franciso Rodriguez each pitched a scoreless inning and John Axford closed out the game to record his 30th save in 32 chances. Axford, who has now converted a team-record 27 straight save opportunities, saved all three wins against the Cubs.
Randy Wells (2-4) took the loss for the Cubs, giving up all four runs on eight hits.
Tony Campana, who started in right field for the Cubs after Kosuke Fukudome was traded to Cleveland Thursday morning, led off the game by beating out an infield grounder and went to second on a throwing error by Marcum. He then stole third base and scored on Aramis Ramirez’s sacrifice fly to give the Cubs a 1-0 lead.
The Brewers came back to grab a 2-1 lead in the bottom of the first inning on Casey McGehee’s sacrifice fly and Yuniesky Betancourt’s RBI double.
Braun’s 21st home run of the season in the third inning gave the Brewers a 3-1 lead. It was Braun’s fifth home run in his last 12 games.
Milwaukee extended its lead to 4-1 in the fourth inning. After a single by Nyjer Morgan, Braun crushed a pitch from Wells off the center field wall to score Morgan.
Alfonso Soriano’s sixth inning RBI double cut the lead to 4-2.
Notes: To replace Weeks on the roster, the Brewers recalled INF Eric Farris from Triple-A Nashville. Farris made his major league debut in a pinch-hit appearance in the seventh inning and grounded out. … The Cubs recalled OF Tyler Colvin from Triple-A Iowa to replace Fukudome on the roster. … Brewers IF Craig Counsell went 0 for 3 to extend his hitless streak to 41 at-bats, setting a new Brewers record for consecutive at-bats without a hit by a position player. The record had been 38, which was set by Greg Vaughn in 1990.
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