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Milwaukee Brewers win when Cincinnati Reds’ tying run thrown out at plate in 9th inning

The Brewers’ William Contreras, right, tags out the Cincinnati Reds’ Stuart Fairchild to end their game on Sunday in Milwaukee. (AP photo)

MILWAUKEE — Willy Adames hit a three-run homer in the sixth inning and Blake Perkins threw out a runner at the plate to end the game and preserve the Milwaukee Brewers’ 5-4 victory over the Cincinnati Reds on Sunday.

Cincinnati’s Stuart Fairchild was trying to score from second on Santiago Espinal’s bloop hit to center field.

“Off the bat, it was kind of tough,” Perkins said. “I was trying to decide whether or not I was going to go for the catch, like a dive, or play it on a hop. It fell a little bit quicker than I had anticipated, and I knew I just needed to try to get it and get it out as quick as possible. And I was able to do that, so it was pretty cool.”

Catcher William Contreras remained down for several seconds after applying the tag.

“You take a hit like that, you’re a sitting duck and your head gets snapped,” Brewers manager Pat Murphy said. “Who knows? Hopefully he doesn’t have a concussion. Hopefully he’s fine.”

The Milwaukee Brewers' Lorenzo Cain watches after hitting a three-run home run against the Cubs during the 10th inning in Chicago on April 7, 2021. (AP file photo)

The Brewers won two of three from Cincinnati this weekend and have taken each of the last eight series with the Reds. The Brewers lead the NL Central by 6 ½ games over the St. Louis Cardinals.

Cincinnati wasted a thrilling performance from Elly De La Cruz, who homered, tripled and scored three runs. One of those runs came when he raced all the way home from second on Colin Rea’s errant pickoff attempt in the third inning.

De La Cruz tripled and scored in the first inning and hit a leadoff homer off Jared Koenig in the eighth. Spencer Steer also homered for the Reds.

“What a game by Elly today,” Reds manager David Bell said. “He did it in all areas of the game.”

The Reds took a 3-0 lead in the first four innings. They still led 3-1 before Adames’ homer.

After Contreras singled and Christian Yelich walked to start the sixth, the Reds removed starter Frankie Montas and brought Lucas Sims (1-3) in from the bullpen.

Adames sent Sims’ first pitch over the center-field wall, a 421-foot shot that gave the Brewers their first lead of the day.

The Brewers extended their lead to 5-3 in the seventh as Yelich’s two-out bunt single to the right side scored Brice Turang from third.

De La Cruz made it a one-run game again in the eighth. The Reds put runners on the corners later in the eighth, but Perkins made a diving catch of a Jonathan India liner to end the threat.

Cincinnati put the tying run in scoring position again with one out in the ninth when Fairchild hit a grounder to Adames, whose wild throw to first enabled the batter to reach second.

Trevor Megill retired TJ Friedl on a pop fly to Adames and intentionally walked De La Cruz before facing Espinal. Perkins caught the ball on one hop and fired a throw to the plate that didn’t make a single bounce before reaching Contreras at the plate.

“I think off the bat, we all thought it was a run for sure, with Stuart’s speed,” Bell said. “Looking at it, he had a good lead, had a good secondary lead. … In the end, it was just a great play by their center fielder. He got to it quick, was playing pretty shallow and made a perfect throw.”

Rea (6-2) allowed three runs – two earned – along with four hits and one walk in six innings.

Megill recorded his 13th save in 14 opportunities.

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Trainer’s Room

Brewers manager Pat Murphy said RHP J.B. Bukauskas (right lat) felt discomfort the day after pitching an inning in a rehabilitation appearance Thursday with Triple-A Nashville. Bukauskas underwent imaging on Saturday and is awaiting the result. … Brewers LHP DL Hall (left knee) threw two shutout innings Sunday for Nashville.

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Up Next

Reds: Open a three-game series at Pittsburgh: RHP Carson Spiers (0-0, 2.33) starts for the Reds and RHP Paul Skenes (3-0, 2.43) pitches for the Pirates on Monday.

Brewers: Begin a seven-game trip with a three-game series against the Los Angeles Angels. RHP Carlos Rodriguez (0-1, 4.91) starts for the Brewers and RHP José Soriano (4-5, 3.48) pitches for the Angels on Monday.

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AP MLB: https://apnews.com/hub/MLB

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