Milwaukee at Minnesota

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Milwaukee (37-30) «00042022111151
Minnesota (33-32)010011000351

Jenkins' grand slam highlights Brewers' third straight win

CBS SportsLine.com wire reports
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MINNEAPOLIS -- Milwaukee manager Ned Yost isn't sure if the no-hitter Detroit's Justin Verlander threw Tuesday served as a wake-up call. But it must have done something to jump-start the Brewers.

Geoff Jenkins hit a grand slam and Prince Fielder added a two-run shot to power Milwaukee past the Minnesota Twins 11-3 on Friday night, extending the Brewers win streak to three for the first time since a six-game stretch May 4-9.

"I don't know what you call it, I really don't," Yost said. "But there's been a bit of a different feel from that point. It's hard to explain."

The Brewers are suddenly showing signs of returning to the form that got them off to a 24-10 start. Milwaukee is just 13-20 since then, but still has a comfortable lead in the NL Central.

Twins starter Scott Baker (1-2) cruised through the first three innings before hitting a wall in the fourth.

After Ryan Braun and Fielder singled to start the inning, Baker struck out Bill Hall. The right-hander had two strikes on Johnny Estrada before hitting him to load the bases.

Jenkins, who entered the game with 15 hits in his last 80 at-bats, followed with a drive over the baggie in right field to clear the bases. The veteran outfielder finished 3-for-5.

"Seems like a team, no matter who it is, starts scoring some runs, everyone relaxes," Jenkins said.

Did the no-hitter from Verlander help refocus everyone?

"There ain't nothing great about getting no-hit," Jenkins said. "It's not like mentally you feel great after a game like that. This team is resilient and everyone's confident. We know we can play good baseball."

Estrada also went 3-for-4 for Milwaukee, which had 15 hits.

"We're starting to turn it around. It's a long season," Hall said. "We've got a number of guys that can pick it up on any given day and that's what we're doing."

Baker was pulled with two outs in the fifth after Hall lined a two-run double to left to give Milwaukee a 6-1 lead.

The Twins tried to chip away at the lead and Brewers starter Claudio Vargas (5-1). Jason Kubel cut the lead to four with a solo homer in the fifth and Justin Morneau added an opposite-field home run the next inning.

But Fielder ended any hopes of a comeback in the seventh with a 409-foot home run off the Twins' AL Central championship banner in right-center field. The blast prompted a small contingent of Brewers fans in the Metrodome to begin chanting "MVP! MVP!"

Vargas pitched six innings, giving up two earned runs and striking out five.

Brian Shouse pitched three perfect innings for his first save of the year.

Baker, who was pitching for the first time in 10 days after having his spot skipped in the rotation, has struggled since beating the Brewers on May 19 after being called up from Triple-A. Since that win, he is 0-2 with a 9.63 ERA.

Baker yielded six runs and seven hits in 4 2/3 innings Friday. Twins manager Ron Gardenhire said that Baker was having trouble seeing the signs from Redmond because of contact lens problems.

When asked if that was the case, Baker said he doesn't wear contacts.

"I guess Redmond called for a pitch over and I just didn't see it," he said. "Then there were some pitches where I couldn't see between the one or the two fingers, but I don't think we ever got crossed up."

Before Friday's game, Gardenhire said Baker needs to "fit in now" as the Twins (33-32) are approaching a difficult portion of their schedule. If he doesn't fit in soon, possible replacements in the rotation include prospect Matt Garza or former starter Ramon Ortiz.

"We've pretty much gone through our system here," Gardenhire said. "We don't have that many options. We've got Garza down (in Triple-A) who we think is getting pretty close, and guys like that. We'll have to sit back and think about it."

Notes

  • Jenkins' grand slam was the fourth of his career.
  • Twins second-baseman Luis Castillo entered the game hitting .382 against righties, the best in the majors.
  • Entering Friday, the Brewers had scored 44.6 percent of its runs by way of home runs, second most in baseball.
  • Before Fielder's home run off reliever Ortiz in the seventh, the Twins bullpen had not allowed a run in 15 1/3 innings.
 
Copyright 2014 by STATS LLC and The Associated Press. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC and The Associated Press is strictly prohibited.
 
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Geoff Jenkins breaks out of a slump with a grand slam and finishes the night 3-for-5.  (AP)
Geoff Jenkins breaks out of a slump with a grand slam and finishes the night 3-for-5. (AP)

Players of the Game
Milwaukee

C. Vargas
IP 6.0
H 5
ER 2
BB 2
K 5
Milwaukee

G. Jenkins
AB 5
R 1
H 3
HR 1
RBI 4
 

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Milwaukee Brewers
Corey Hart, RF5111010 .294
J.J. Hardy, SS5110002 .281
Ryan Braun, 3B5220012 .320
Prince Fielder, DH4322111 .292
Bill Hall, CF4012012 .262
   a- Tony Gwynn Jr., PH-CF1000011 .301
Johnny Estrada, C4231001 .294
Geoff Jenkins, LF5134001 .281
Tony Graffanino, 1B4110024 .238
Craig Counsell, 2B4011001 .237
Totals4111151117  
a-struck out for Hall in the 9th
Batting
2B - Ryan Braun (6, Ortiz), Bill Hall (17, Baker)
HR - Prince Fielder (24, Ortiz), Geoff Jenkins (12, Baker)
RBI - Corey Hart (18), Prince Fielder 2 (53), Bill Hall 2 (25), Johnny Estrada (22), Geoff Jenkins 4 (34), Craig Counsell (11)
2-OUT RBI - Prince Fielder 2 (12), Bill Hall 2 (6), Johnny Estrada (11)
SB - Corey Hart (11, 2nd base off Baker/Redmond)
Team LOB - 5
Fielding
E - Ryan Braun (5, Misplayed grounder)
Milwaukee Brewers
Claudio Vargas (W,5-1) 6532252 3.86
Brian Shouse (S,1) 3000010 3.86
Pitches-Strikes - Claudio Vargas 107-66, Brian Shouse 33-21
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Claudio Vargas 5-7, Brian Shouse 7-1
Batters Faced - Claudio Vargas 24, Brian Shouse 9
Minnesota Twins
Luis Castillo, 2B4010010 .332
Joe Mauer, DH4000010 .313
Michael Cuddyer, RF4010010 .297
Justin Morneau, 1B2211101 .275
   a- Jeff Cirillo, PH1000000 .207
Torii Hunter, CF2010100 .312
   b- Lew Ford, PH1000000 .217
Mike Redmond, C3001013 .298
   c- Chris Heintz, PH1000000 .208
Jason Kubel, LF3111010 .239
Luis Rodriguez, 3B3000000 .194
Nick Punto, SS3000010 .224
Totals3135326  
a-grounded out for Morneau in the 9th
b-grounded out for Hunter in the 9th
c-lined out for Redmond in the 9th
Batting
HR - Justin Morneau (19, Vargas), Jason Kubel (5, Vargas)
RBI - Justin Morneau (51), Mike Redmond (19), Jason Kubel (22)
2-OUT RBI - Justin Morneau (18)
CS - Luis Castillo (2, 2nd base by Vargas/Estrada)
Team LOB - 3
Fielding
DP - Morneau-Punto
E - Jason Kubel (1, Throwing)
Minnesota Twins
Scott Baker (L,1-2) 4.2766161 7.33
Ramon Ortiz 4.1855011 5.71
IBB - Fielder by Scott Baker
HBP - Estrada (by Scott Baker)
Pitches-Strikes - Scott Baker 90-56, Ramon Ortiz 52-34
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Scott Baker 3-5, Ramon Ortiz 7-4
Batters Faced - Scott Baker 23, Ramon Ortiz 20
Game Information
Attendance - 27977
Game Time - 2:46
Temperature - 70
Umpires - Home - Brian O'Nora, First Base - Phil Cuzzi, Second Base - Tom Hallion, Third Base - Jerry Crawford