Yelich, Brewers beat Cubs 3-1 for NL Central title

CHICAGO (AP) Christian Yelich's easy smile and champagne-soaked T-shirt said it all.

A division title is much more fun than a Triple Crown.

Yelich collected three more hits as the Milwaukee Brewers won their first NL Central title since 2011, beating the Chicago Cubs 3-1 on Monday in a tiebreaker game. The silky-smooth slugger stalled in his bid for the league's first Triple Crown in decades, but he starred once again as the Brew Crew captured the biggest prize of the day.

''I know how hard it is to get to this point and I'm proud to be a part of this group,'' Yelich said as Milwaukee's boozy party swirled around him, filling every inch of the cramped visitors' clubhouse at Wrigley Field.

Lorenzo Cain hit a go-ahead single in the eighth inning to help Milwaukee to its eighth straight win and home-field advantage throughout the NL playoffs. The Brewers will host the wild-card winner starting Thursday in the best-of-five Division Series.

Chicago stays at Wrigley for Tuesday night's wild-card game against Colorado. The Rockies lost 5-2 to the Los Angeles Dodgers in Monday's second tiebreaker for the NL West title.

''It's no fun. Of course we'd prefer the other route,'' manager Joe Maddon said.

It's a quick turnaround after falling short in their bid for a third straight division title, but the Cubs will have ace left-hander Jon Lester on the mound for the elimination game.

''We'll be ready. This team has responded all year,'' said Anthony Rizzo, who homered for Chicago's run.

Yelich singled home Milwaukee's first run and won the NL batting title with a .326 average. He had 110 RBIs, one behind the Cubs' Javier Baez, and finished with 36 home runs, two shy of Colorado's Nolan Arenado. The tiebreakers were game 163 of the regular season and Arenado's homer counted in the totals.

Joe Medwick in 1937 was the last NL player to win the Triple Crown. Miguel Cabrera did it for Detroit in 2012.

Milwaukee trailed Chicago by as many as five games in September, but manager Craig Counsell's club pushed the season to an extra day with a furious finish and then used its deep lineup and bullpen to outlast the playoff-tested Cubs.

''It just shows the heart and the mentality that this team has,'' Cain said. ''Never give up. Continue to fight each and every day in each and every at-bat. We're going to continue to do that in the playoffs.''

Orlando Arcia, batting in the eighth slot, had a career-high four hits, and Josh Hader closed out another dominant relief performance for the Brewers.

''All the guys in the `pen, they're attacking the zone and putting us in a good position to win ballgames,'' Hader said.

Jose Quintana pitched six-hit ball into the sixth inning, but Chicago's bullpen faltered at a key moment. Rizzo, Baez and Daniel Murphy accounted for the Cubs' three hits.

The game was tied at 1 before Milwaukee opened the eighth with three straight hits. Arcia singled on a 0-2 pitch from Justin Wilson (4-5), Domingo Santana had a pinch-hit double and Cain greeted Steve Cishek with a single back up the middle.

After Yelich struck out swinging - a rare occurrence during an extraordinary stretch for the NL MVP favorite - Ryan Braun got the Brewers an insurance run with a run-scoring single to center.

It was more than enough for Milwaukee's vaunted bullpen. Corey Knebel (4-3) extended his scoreless streak to 16 1/3 innings with a perfect seventh, and Hader worked two innings for his 12th save.

Rizzo had one last chance for Chicago, but he flied to right with Baez on second for the final out . When it was over, Hader wrapped his arms around catcher Erik Kratz as the rest of the Brewers poured out of the dugout.

A sizable portion of Milwaukee fans in the crowd of 38,450 chanted ''Let's go Brewers! Let's go Brewers!'' - a rarity at Wrigley over the past few years.

''We could hear `em, we could really hear them and we fed off of that,'' Yelich said. ''We wanted to bring this home for them.''

Yelich also heard repeated ''MVP!'' chants when he singled in each of his first three at-bats. He drove in Arcia with his two-out hit in the third.

Jhoulys Chacin sailed into the fifth inning with the lead, retiring 11 of his first 12 batters. But Rizzo led off with a massive drive to right for his 25th homer, tying it 1.

The crowd roared as Rizzo rounded the bases and then popped out of the dugout for a curtain call.

Chicago had a chance to grab the lead in the sixth, but Joakim Soria escaped the threat by striking out Baez with runners on first and second.

''That was the big moment,'' Counsell said.

Chacin allowed one hit in 5 2/3 innings, setting up Milwaukee's bullpen quite nicely. The right-hander struck out three and walked two in another solid effort in a career year.

Quintana kept the Cubs in the game with another stingy performance against Milwaukee, allowing one run in five-plus innings. The left-hander is 4-1 with a 2.13 ERA in seven starts against the Brewers this year.

UP NEXT

The Rockies and Cubs split six games this season, with each team scoring 33 runs.

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Jay Cohen can be reached at http://www.twitter.com/jcohenap

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Copyright 2018 by AP. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of AP is strictly prohibited.

123456789RHE
MIL96-67
0010000203120
CHC95-68
000010000130
  • W: C. Knebel (4-3)L: J. Wilson (4-5)S: J. Hader (12)
  • HR: CHC - A. Rizzo (25)
PLAYERS OF THE GAME
HITTERSABRHRBIHRBBSOLOBAVGOBPSLGOPSFPTS
L. Cain CF40110002.308.395.417.8132.0
C. Yelich RF-LF40310012.326.402.5981.0005.5
R. Braun LF40110023.254.313.469.7820.0
K. Broxton RF00000000.179.281.410.6910.0
J. Aguilar 1B40100012.274.352.539.8900.5
J. Hader P00000000.500.500.5001.0000.0
J. Schoop 2B40000001.233.266.416.6820.0
M. Moustakas 3B40100011.251.315.459.7740.5
E. Kratz C40000012.236.280.355.634-0.5
O. Arcia SS42400000.236.268.307.5766.0
J. Chacin P00000000.161.203.179.3820.0
X. Cedeno P0000-000.000.000.000.000-
J. Soria P0000-000.000.000.000.000-
C. Knebel P0000-000.000.000.000.000-
a- D. Santana PH11100000.265.328.412.7403.0
T. Shaw 1B10000002.241.345.480.8250.0
  • a-doubled for Knebel in the 8th
HITTERSABRHRBIHRBBSOLOBAVGOBPSLGOPSFPTS
D. Murphy 2B40100010.299.336.454.7900.5
B. Zobrist RF-LF30000100.305.378.440.8171.0
J. Baez SS40100022.290.326.554.8810.0
A. Rizzo 1B41111001.283.376.470.8466.0
K. Bryant 3B20000110.272.374.460.8340.5
K. Schwarber LF20000011.238.356.467.823-0.5
J. Chavez P0000-000.000.000.000.000-
a- T. La Stella PH10000000.266.340.331.6720.0
J. Wilson P0000-000.000.000.000.000-
S. Cishek P0000-000.167.167.167.000-
R. Rosario P0000-0001.0001.0001.000.000-
B. Kintzler P0000-000.000.000.000.000-
J. Garcia P00000000.000.000.000.0000.0
J. Heyward CF-RF30000010.270.335.395.731-0.5
J. Quintana P10000010.077.077.077.154-0.5
I. Happ CF00000100.233.353.408.7611.0
b- A. Almora PH-CF10000000.286.323.378.7010.0
W. Contreras C30000011.249.339.390.730-0.5
  • a-grounded out for J. Chavez in the 7th
  • b-lined out for Happ in the 8th
BATTING
  • 2B - D. Santana (14)
  • SH - J. Chacin 2 (9)
  • RBI - L. Cain (38), C. Yelich (110), R. Braun (64)
  • 2-Out RBI - C. Yelich (52)
  • Runners left in scoring position, 2-Out - L. Cain, R. Braun, J. Aguilar, E. Kratz, T. Shaw 2 (2)
BATTING
  • HR - A. Rizzo (25)
  • RBI - A. Rizzo (101)
  • Runners left in scoring position, 2-Out - J. Baez 2 (2), A. Rizzo
BASERUNNING
  • SB - C. Yelich (22)
  • CS - R. Braun (5)
FIELDING
  • DP - 2 (Aguilar-Arcia; Chacin-Schoop-Aguilar)
FIELDING
  • DP - 2 (Baez-Murphy-Rizzo; Bryant-Murphy-Rizzo)
PITCHERSIPHRERBBSOHRERAWHIPFPTS
J. Chacin5.21112313.501.1612.5
X. Cedeno0.01001002.431.26-2.0
J. Soria0.10000103.121.140.5
C. Knebel (W, 4-3)1.00000103.581.0810.5
J. Hader (S, 12)2.01000302.430.8113.5
PITCHERSIP
J. Chacin5.2
X. Cedeno0.0
J. Soria0.1
C. Knebel (W, 4-3)1.0
J. Hader (S, 12)2.0
PITCHERSIPHRERBBSOHRERAWHIPFPTS
J. Quintana5.06110404.031.3210.0
J. Chavez2.00000102.551.066.5
J. Wilson (L, 4-5)0.02220003.461.43-9.0
S. Cishek0.01000002.181.04-1.0
R. Rosario0.10000103.661.480.5
B. Kintzler0.21000004.601.47-1.0
J. Garcia1.02000005.821.541.0
PITCHING
  • Pitches-Strikes - J. Chacin 75-46, X. Cedeno 8-2, J. Soria 6-3, C. Knebel 10-7, J. Hader 35-26
  • Ground Balls-Fly Balls - J. Chacin 4-8, C. Knebel 2-0
  • Batters Faced - J. Chacin 18, X. Cedeno 2, J. Soria, C. Knebel 3, J. Hader 7
PITCHING
  • Pitches-Strikes - J. Quintana 64-41, J. Chavez 16-11, J. Wilson 8-5, S. Cishek 6-3, R. Rosario 6-4, B. Kintzler 13-8, J. Garcia 15-10
  • Ground Balls-Fly Balls - J. Quintana 5-5, J. Chavez 4-0, J. Garcia 2-1
  • Batters Faced - J. Quintana 20, J. Chavez 5, J. Wilson 2, S. Cishek, R. Rosario, B. Kintzler 2, J. Garcia 5
PLAYERS OF THE GAME
123456789RHE
MIL96-67
0010000203120
CHC95-68
000010000130
HITTERSABRHRBIHRBBSOLOBAVGOBPSLGOPSFPTS
L. Cain CF40110002.308.395.417.8132.0
C. Yelich RF-LF40310012.326.402.5981.0005.5
R. Braun LF40110023.254.313.469.7820.0
K. Broxton RF00000000.179.281.410.6910.0
J. Aguilar 1B40100012.274.352.539.8900.5
J. Hader P00000000.500.500.5001.0000.0
J. Schoop 2B40000001.233.266.416.6820.0
M. Moustakas 3B40100011.251.315.459.7740.5
E. Kratz C40000012.236.280.355.634-0.5
O. Arcia SS42400000.236.268.307.5766.0
J. Chacin P00000000.161.203.179.3820.0
X. Cedeno P0000-000.000.000.000.000-
J. Soria P0000-000.000.000.000.000-
C. Knebel P0000-000.000.000.000.000-
a- D. Santana PH11100000.265.328.412.7403.0
T. Shaw 1B10000002.241.345.480.8250.0
Total34312300615-----
  • a-doubled for Knebel in the 8th
HITTERSABRHRBIHRBBSOLOBAVGOBPSLGOPSFPTS
D. Murphy 2B40100010.299.336.454.7900.5
B. Zobrist RF-LF30000100.305.378.440.8171.0
J. Baez SS40100022.290.326.554.8810.0
A. Rizzo 1B41111001.283.376.470.8466.0
K. Bryant 3B20000110.272.374.460.8340.5
K. Schwarber LF20000011.238.356.467.823-0.5
J. Chavez P0000-000.000.000.000.000-
a- T. La Stella PH10000000.266.340.331.6720.0
J. Wilson P0000-000.000.000.000.000-
S. Cishek P0000-000.167.167.167.000-
R. Rosario P0000-0001.0001.0001.000.000-
B. Kintzler P0000-000.000.000.000.000-
J. Garcia P00000000.000.000.000.0000.0
J. Heyward CF-RF30000010.270.335.395.731-0.5
J. Quintana P10000010.077.077.077.154-0.5
I. Happ CF00000100.233.353.408.7611.0
b- A. Almora PH-CF10000000.286.323.378.7010.0
W. Contreras C30000011.249.339.390.730-0.5
Total281311385-----
  • a-grounded out for J. Chavez in the 7th
  • b-lined out for Happ in the 8th
BATTING
  • 2B - D. Santana (14)
  • SH - J. Chacin 2 (9)
  • RBI - L. Cain (38), C. Yelich (110), R. Braun (64)
  • 2-Out RBI - C. Yelich (52)
  • Runners left in scoring position, 2-Out - L. Cain, R. Braun, J. Aguilar, E. Kratz, T. Shaw 2 (2)
BATTING
  • HR - A. Rizzo (25)
  • RBI - A. Rizzo (101)
  • Runners left in scoring position, 2-Out - J. Baez 2 (2), A. Rizzo
BASERUNNING
  • SB - C. Yelich (22)
  • CS - R. Braun (5)
FIELDING
  • DP - 2 (Aguilar-Arcia; Chacin-Schoop-Aguilar)
FIELDING
  • DP - 2 (Baez-Murphy-Rizzo; Bryant-Murphy-Rizzo)
PITCHERSIPHRERBBSOHRERAWHIPFPTS
J. Chacin5.21112313.501.1612.5
X. Cedeno0.01001002.431.26-2.0
J. Soria0.10000103.121.140.5
C. Knebel (W, 4-3)1.00000103.581.0810.5
J. Hader (S, 12)2.01000302.430.8113.5
Total9.0311381---
PITCHERSIP
J. Chacin5.2
X. Cedeno0.0
J. Soria0.1
C. Knebel (W, 4-3)1.0
J. Hader (S, 12)2.0
Total9.0
PITCHERSIPHRERBBSOHRERAWHIPFPTS
J. Quintana5.06110404.031.3210.0
J. Chavez2.00000102.551.066.5
J. Wilson (L, 4-5)0.02220003.461.43-9.0
S. Cishek0.01000002.181.04-1.0
R. Rosario0.10000103.661.480.5
B. Kintzler0.21000004.601.47-1.0
J. Garcia1.02000005.821.541.0
Total9.01233060---
PITCHERSIP
J. Quintana5.0
J. Chavez2.0
J. Wilson (L, 4-5)0.0
S. Cishek0.0
R. Rosario0.1
B. Kintzler0.2
J. Garcia1.0
Total9.0
PITCHING
  • Pitches-Strikes - J. Chacin 75-46, X. Cedeno 8-2, J. Soria 6-3, C. Knebel 10-7, J. Hader 35-26
  • Ground Balls-Fly Balls - J. Chacin 4-8, C. Knebel 2-0
  • Batters Faced - J. Chacin 18, X. Cedeno 2, J. Soria, C. Knebel 3, J. Hader 7
PITCHING
  • Pitches-Strikes - J. Quintana 64-41, J. Chavez 16-11, J. Wilson 8-5, S. Cishek 6-3, R. Rosario 6-4, B. Kintzler 13-8, J. Garcia 15-10
  • Ground Balls-Fly Balls - J. Quintana 5-5, J. Chavez 4-0, J. Garcia 2-1
  • Batters Faced - J. Quintana 20, J. Chavez 5, J. Wilson 2, S. Cishek, R. Rosario, B. Kintzler 2, J. Garcia 5
  • 8TH INNING
    Braun singled to center, Santana scored, Cain to third31
    Cain singled to center, Arcia scored, Santana to third21
  • 5TH INNING
    Rizzo homered to right11
  • 3RD INNING
    Yelich singled to center, Arcia scored10
  • 9TH INNING
    • Jaime Garcia relieved Brandon Kintzler
    • J. Schoop: Ball, Strike swinging, Schoop grounded out to third
    • M. Moustakas: Strike looking, Moustakas singled to center
    • E. Kratz: Ball, Ball, Strike looking, Pickoff attempt, Kratz fouled out to first
    • O. Arcia: Pickoff attempt, Ball, Foul, Arcia singled to left, Moustakas to second
    • T. Shaw: Ball, Strike swinging, Shaw grounded out to catcher
    • Middle of the 9th (0 Runs, 2 Hits, 0 Errors)
    • Keon Broxton in right field
    • D. Murphy: Strike looking, Strike swinging, Foul, Strike swinging, Murphy struck out swinging
    • B. Zobrist: Foul, Ball, Ball, Zobrist flied out to right
    • J. Baez: Ball, Ball, Ball, Strike looking, Strike looking, Foul, Foul, Foul, Baez singled to left center
    • A. Rizzo: Ball, Baez to second on fielder's indifference, Foul, Strike swinging, Rizzo flied out to deep right
    • End of the 9th (0 Runs, 1 Hit, 0 Errors)
  • 8TH INNING
    • Justin Wilson pitching
    • O. Arcia: Strike looking, Strike swinging, Arcia singled to center
    • Domingo Santana hit for Corey Knebel
    • D. Santana: Ball, Ball, Foul, Pickoff attempt, Ball, Santana doubled to left, Arcia to third
    • Steve Cishek relieved Justin Wilson
    • L. Cain: Ball, Ball, Foul, Ball, Strike looking, Cain singled to center, Arcia scored, Santana to third
    • Randy Rosario relieved Steve Cishek
    • C. Yelich: Foul, Foul, Foul, Ball, Ball, Strike swinging, Yelich struck out swinging
    • Brandon Kintzler relieved Randy Rosario
    • R. Braun: Ball, Pickoff attempt to first, Strike looking, Ball, Strike swinging, Braun singled to center, Santana scored, Cain to third
    • J. Aguilar: Strike looking, Pickoff attempt to first, Foul, Ball, Braun caught stealing second, catcher to shortstop, Ball, Ball, Foul, Foul, Aguilar flied out to left
    • Middle of the 8th (2 Runs, 4 Hits, 0 Errors)
    • Josh Hader pitching
    • Travis Shaw at first base
    • J. Heyward: Ball, Strike looking, Foul, Foul, Strike looking, Heyward struck out looking
    • Albert Almora hit for Ian Happ
    • A. Almora: Strike looking, Almora lined out to second
    • W. Contreras: Ball, Strike looking, Foul, Foul, Foul, Ball, Strike swinging, Contreras struck out swinging
    • End of the 8th (0 Runs, 0 Hits, 0 Errors)
  • 7TH INNING
    • J. Chavez Pitching:
    • J. Schoop: Schoop grounded out to third
    • M. Moustakas: Ball, Strike looking, Moustakas grounded out to third
    • E. Kratz: Strike looking, Kratz grounded out to second
    • Middle of the 7th (0 Runs, 0 Hits, 0 Errors)
    • Corey Knebel relieved Joakim Soria
    • A. Rizzo: Strike looking, Rizzo grounded out to second
    • K. Bryant: Ball, Foul, Ball, Foul, Strike swinging, Bryant struck out swinging
    • Tommy La Stella hit for Jesse Chavez
    • T. La Stella: Ball, Strike swinging, La Stella grounded out to second
    • End of the 7th (0 Runs, 0 Hits, 0 Errors)
  • 6TH INNING
    • J. Quintana Pitching:
    • C. Yelich: Ball, Ball, Strike looking, Strike looking, Ball, Yelich singled to left
    • Jesse Chavez pitching
    • Ian Happ in center field
    • R. Braun: Ball, Ball, Strike looking, Strike swinging, Strike swinging, Braun struck out swinging
    • J. Aguilar: Strike looking, Pickoff attempt, Strike swinging, Ball, Ball, Aguilar grounded out to second, Yelich out at second
    • Middle of the 6th (0 Runs, 1 Hit, 0 Errors)
    • Jason Heyward in right field
    • Ben Zobrist in left field
    • I. Happ: Ball, Ball, Ball, Strike looking, Foul, Ball, Happ walked
    • W. Contreras: Pickoff attempt, Ball, Pickoff attempt, Contreras grounded out to second, Happ out at second
    • Xavier Cedeno relieved Jhoulys Chacin
    • D. Murphy: Ball, Foul, Ball, Murphy singled to right
    • B. Zobrist: Ball, Ball, Ball, Ball, Zobrist walked, Murphy to second
    • Joakim Soria relieved Xavier Cedeno
    • J. Baez: Ball, Strike looking, Ball, Ball, Foul, Strike swinging, Baez struck out swinging
    • End of the 6th (0 Runs, 1 Hit, 0 Errors)
  • 5TH INNING
    • J. Quintana Pitching:
    • E. Kratz: Ball, Strike looking, Foul, Strike swinging, Kratz struck out swinging
    • O. Arcia: Ball, Arcia singled to left
    • J. Chacin: Chacin hit sacrifice bunt to pitcher, Arcia to second
    • L. Cain: Cain flied out to center
    • Middle of the 5th (0 Runs, 1 Hit, 0 Errors)
    • J. Chacin Pitching:
    • A. Rizzo: Strike swinging, Rizzo homered to right
    • K. Bryant: Bryant flied out to center
    • K. Schwarber: Ball, Strike looking, Strike swinging, Ball, Ball, Foul, Strike looking, Schwarber struck out looking
    • J. Heyward: Foul, Ball, Ball, Ball, Strike looking, Heyward flied out to deep right
    • End of the 5th (1 Run, 1 Hit, 0 Errors)
  • 4TH INNING
    • J. Quintana Pitching:
    • J. Aguilar: Strike looking, Strike swinging, Ball, Strike looking, Aguilar struck out looking
    • J. Schoop: Ball, Schoop flied out to left
    • M. Moustakas: Strike looking, Ball, Ball, Foul, Foul, Ball, Strike swinging, Moustakas struck out swinging
    • Middle of the 4th (0 Runs, 0 Hits, 0 Errors)
    • J. Chacin Pitching:
    • D. Murphy: Murphy fouled out to third
    • B. Zobrist: Strike looking, Foul, Zobrist flied out to right
    • J. Baez: Ball, Ball, Ball, Baez flied out to left
    • End of the 4th (0 Runs, 0 Hits, 0 Errors)
  • 3RD INNING
    • J. Quintana Pitching:
    • O. Arcia: Strike looking, Ball, Ball, Ball, Foul, Arcia singled to center
    • J. Chacin: Foul, Pickoff attempt, Pickoff attempt, Ball, Strike looking, Chacin hit sacrifice bunt to first, Arcia to second
    • L. Cain: Ball, Strike looking, Cain grounded out to shortstop, Arcia to third
    • C. Yelich: Foul, Ball, Yelich singled to center, Arcia scored
    • R. Braun: Ball, Foul, Foul, Ball, Yelich stole second, Strike swinging, Braun struck out swinging
    • Middle of the 3rd (1 Run, 2 Hits, 0 Errors)
    • J. Chacin Pitching:
    • J. Heyward: Foul, Ball, Ball, Heyward grounded out to first
    • J. Quintana: Ball, Strike looking, Strike looking, Strike looking, Quintana struck out looking
    • W. Contreras: Strike swinging, Ball, Strike swinging, Contreras grounded out to third
    • End of the 3rd (0 Runs, 0 Hits, 0 Errors)
  • 2ND INNING
    • J. Quintana Pitching:
    • J. Aguilar: Foul, Ball, Ball, Aguilar singled to center
    • J. Schoop: Schoop lined out to third
    • M. Moustakas: Strike looking, Moustakas flied out to right
    • E. Kratz: Kratz flied out to left
    • Middle of the 2nd (0 Runs, 1 Hit, 0 Errors)
    • J. Chacin Pitching:
    • A. Rizzo: Strike looking, Foul, Foul, Ball, Foul, Foul, Foul, Ball, Rizzo flied out to center
    • K. Bryant: Ball, Foul, Ball, Ball, Ball, Bryant walked
    • K. Schwarber: Strike looking, Foul, Ball, Ball, Pickoff attempt, Foul, Schwarber grounded out to shortstop, Bryant out at second
    • End of the 2nd (0 Runs, 0 Hits, 0 Errors)
  • 1ST INNING
    • J. Quintana Pitching:
    • L. Cain: Cain grounded out to shortstop
    • C. Yelich: Ball, Strike looking, Foul, Yelich reached on an infield single to second
    • R. Braun: Ball, Ball, Braun grounded out to second, Yelich out at second
    • Middle of the 1st (0 Runs, 1 Hit, 0 Errors)
    • J. Chacin Pitching:
    • D. Murphy: Strike looking, Strike looking, Murphy flied out to center
    • B. Zobrist: Ball, Foul, Ball, Ball, Zobrist lined out to right
    • J. Baez: Strike swinging, Strike looking, Strike swinging, Baez struck out swinging
    • End of the 1st (0 Runs, 0 Hits, 0 Errors)