Ashby, Brewers beat Pirates 6-0 to split doubleheader
PITTSBURGH (AP) — Rookie Aaron Ashby and three relievers combined on a four-hitter, Rowdy Tellez hit a long home run and the Milwaukee Brewers beat the Pittsburgh Pirates 6-0 on Saturday night to split a day-night doubleheader.
In the first game, Kevin Newman tied a major league record with four doubles — in successive innings, no less — and the Pirates rolled to a 14-4 win to snap their eight-game losing streak.
Ashby pitched the first four innings of the nightcap and allowed three hits while striking four and walking none. Making his third career start, the left-hander fell one inning short of qualifying for his first major league win.
“It was awesome. I thought it went really well,” Ashby said. “I was efficient in the strike zone and went out and got things accomplished.”
Brad Boxberger (5-3), Devin Williams and Hunter Strickland worked one inning each to finish the seven-inning game.
Tellez blasted a two-run home run to cap a three-run fifth inning and give the Brewers a 5-0 lead. The drive, estimated at 445 feet, cleared the right-field stands and bounced off a walkway adjacent to the Allegheny River and into the water.
“That was unbelievable,” Ashby said. “When he hit the ball, you knew right away it was gone, but I didn’t think it would leave the ballpark.”
Avisail Garcia added a solo home run in the seventh to complete the scoring.
Milwaukee won for the fifth time in six games and leads the NL Central by eight games over Cincinnati.
The Brewers scored the game’s first two runs in the fourth inning off Mitch Keller (3-10). Jace Peterson’s RBI single broke the scoreless tie and Lorenzo Cain drove in a run with a fielder’s choice grounder.
A throwing error by catcher Michael Perez allowed a run to score in the fifth before Tellez connected.
Peterson, Garcia, Willy Adames and Omar Narvaez had two hits each.
It was quite a reversal for the Brewers from the first game.
“The beauty of baseball is you get to come back and play each day and today we happened to play again on the same day,” Peterson said. “It’s a sign of a good team that you can put a bad game behind you and win the next game.”
Keller has lost all three starts since being recalled from Triple-A Indianapolis. He lasted 4 1/3 innings and surrendered nine hits, walked one and struck out three.
“He threw the ball over the plate, threw strikes. He just left some balls over the middle of the plate,” Pittsburgh manager Derek Shelton said. “Then we had a couple plays that we probably should have made that we didn’t that ended up counting for runs.”
In the opener, Newman doubled in each inning from the third through the sixth in the seven-inning game. He also scored four times.
“You grow up as a kid and your dream is to play in the major leagues,” said Newman, who came into the game hitting just .218. “Coming off the field, someone told me I was part of a major league record and that’s really something. It’s something you dream about. It’s an honor.”
Newman’s third double drove in two to spark a six-run fifth that included Bryan Reynolds’ two-run homer. That outburst broke the game open, giving the Pirates a 12-4 lead.
The only Pirates to previously hit four doubles in a game were Hall of Famer Paul Waner in 1932 and Adam Frazier in 2019.
Rookie Hoy Park had three of the Pirates’ 19 hits. Ke’Bryan Hayes, Reynolds, Rodolfo Castro and Gregory Polanco added two hits each. Hayes, Jacob Stallings and Newman had two RBIs apiece.
Pinch-hitter Wilmer Difo and Hayes added RBIs in the big fifth.
Chasen Shreve (1-0) struck out the side in the fifth.
Brett Anderson (4-6) was tagged for six runs and eight hits in 3 1/3 innings. He lost for just the second time to the Pirates in eight career decisions.
The Brewers’ Kolten Wong and Tyrone Taylor hit home runs.
“We did a nice job offensively the first four innings, gave ourselves a shot and then things kind of got out of hand,” Milwaukee manager Craig Counsell said.
The game was a makeup of Friday night’s rainout.
Brewers: Tellez (right knee discomfort) and Garcia (bruised left hand) both returned to action after missing Thursday’s win over the Cubs in Chicago.
Pirates: LF Anthony Alford (back spasms) sat out both games.
The three-game series ends Sunday with LHP Eric Lauer (4-4, 3.50) starting for the Brewers against LHP Dillon Peters. Lauer will be reinstated from the COVID-19 injured list and Peters will be recalled from Triple-A Indianapolis.
More AP MLB: https://apnews.com/MLB and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports