Brubaker pitches Pirates past Brewers 6-1 in series opener

MILWAUKEE (AP) — JT Brubaker struck out eight in six impressive innings and the Pittsburgh Pirates extended their recent surge by beating the Milwaukee Brewers 6-1 on Friday night.

Colin Moran and Gregory Polanco homered for the Pirates, who have followed a six-game skid by winning five of seven. Adam Frazier added a two-run triple.

Brubaker (2-0) yielded one run and four hits, lowering his ERA to 1.76 in three starts this season. The right-hander didn’t walk anybody, though he did hit three batters.

Adrian Houser (1-2) allowed three runs in 4 1/3 innings, ending Milwaukee’s franchise-record streak of eight straight games in which its starting pitchers worked at least five innings while allowing no more than one run. Brewers starters posted an 0.59 ERA during that stretch.

Moran put the Pirates ahead for good in the second by sending a 2-1 pitch from Houser over the left-field wall for his third homer.

Pittsburgh had runners on first and second in the fifth when Houser was pulled. Frazier greeted reliever Brent Suter with a triple down the right-field line that brought home Kevin Newman and Dustin Fowler.

Frazier scored on Bryan Reynolds’ two-out double to make it 4-0.

Milwaukee’s only run came in the bottom of the fifth when Jace Peterson hit a one-out single and scored on Tyrone Taylor’s double.

The Brewers had multiple opportunities to cut into the lead with RBI leader Travis Shaw at the plate in two-out situations, but he was unable to deliver.

Shaw struck out swinging at a 3-2 pitch with the bases loaded in the third. Milwaukee had two on in the fifth when his line drive went right into the Pirates’ infield shift, enabling Newman to snare it. Shaw came up with the bases full again in the seventh but flied out on reliever Sam Howard’s first pitch.

Polanco broke the game open in the eighth with a two-run homer off Devin Williams, who has allowed four earned runs in 3 2/3 innings this season. Williams gave up just one earned run over 27 innings last season to earn NL Rookie of the Year honors.

TRAINERS’ ROOM

Pirates: RHP Michael Feliz (0-0, 3.18 ERA) went on the 10-day injured list with a cracked nail on his right middle finger. Manager Derek Shelton said the injury affected Feliz in his last couple of appearances.

“We just got to the point where we needed to give it some rest because he continued to re-aggravate it,” Shelton said.

RHP Sean Poppen was added to the active roster.

Brewers: OF Christian Yelich missed his fourth straight game with a sore back.

UP NEXT

The teams continue their three-game series Saturday. Scheduled starting pitchers are right-hander Trevor Cahill (0-1, 8.00) for Pittsburgh and lefty Brett Anderson (1-1, 4.50) for Milwaukee.

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Follow Steve Megargee at https://twitter.com/stevemegargee

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