Jonathan Lucroy drove in two runs to push the Milwaukee Brewers past the St. Louis Cardinals, 5-1, to avoid being swept in the three-game set.
Aramis Ramirez had three hits and drove in a run, while Carlos Gomez and Lyle Overbay each had an RBI for the Brewers, who snapped a two-game skid. Wily Peralta (2-0) surrendered only one run on six hits with three strikeouts across 6 1/3 innings.
“Big game for Wily. We needed certainly a big start from somebody,” said Brewers manager Ron Roenicke. “He came out right away with the fastball that was down in the zone and good sliders. He commanded the ball well.”
Allen Craig’s solo home run accounted for the St. Louis’ lone run. Yadier Molina and Jon Jay had two hits apiece for the Cardinals, who entered the game with four straight wins.
Cardinals starter Joe Kelly (1-1) exited the game in the fifth inning with a leg injury. He laid down a bunt and grabbed his hamstring after getting thrown out at first base to end the frame. He immediately called the team’s trainer and limped off the field.
The right-hander allowed one run on three hits with two strikeouts in four innings before exiting the game. Seth Maness took the mound in relief of the injured starter.
“I definitely tweaked it. I called the trainer over to let him know and I came out of the game,” said Kelly, who will not travel with the team but head back to St. Louis for an MRI on Thursday.
The Brewers opened the scoring in the third. Logan Schafer reached on a fielding error and moved to second on Wily Peralta’s sacrifice bunt. Gomez’s line drive to center scored Schafer to give the Brewers their first lead of the series.
With two-outs in the fifth, Wily Peralta reached first on a line drive that deflected off shortstop Jhonny Peralta’s glove. Maness then walked Gomez and allowed a groundball single to Jean Segura to load the bases. Lucroy brought two runners home on a hard grounder to right field.
Ramirez then hit the first pitch he saw for a single to left, bringing Segura home and making it a 4-0 game.
St. Louis got on the board after Craig smacked a solo shot over the right field wall to make it a 4-1 game in the sixth.
The Brewers loaded the bases in the eighth with no outs. Cardinals reliever Pat Neshak entered the game and walked Overbay to make it a 5-1 game. Neshak got Schafer to ground into a force out that got Davis out at home. Rickie Weeks and Gomez struck out to end the inning.
Francisco Rodriguez entered the game in the ninth for the Brewers and allowed two hits before working out of a one-out jam with runners on second and third to end the game.