June 23, 2018 / 4:03 AM / 8 months ago

Aguilar's 9th-inning HR sends Brewers past Cardinals

EditorsNote: rewords third and fourth grafs

Jesus Aguilar’s second homer of the game with one out in the bottom of the ninth inning Friday night lifted the Milwaukee Brewers to a 2-1 win over the St. Louis Cardinals at Miller Park.

Aguilar blasted his 16th homer off Bud Norris (3-2), lining an 0-2 fastball on the outer half of the plate over the wall in right-center. The long ball gave Milwaukee its third straight win.

Aguilar’s homer in the bottom of the seventh not only evened the score, but it also ended rookie Jack Flaherty’s bid at history. Aguilar golfed a low slider into the Milwaukee bullpen in left with one out for the Brewers’ first hit.

Flaherty struck out 13, matching a career high, in seven innings while walking two. He yielded one run on the one hit.

Corey Knebel (1-0) pitched a clean ninth inning for the win as Milwaukee handed St. Louis its ninth loss in 12 games. The Brewers also expanded their National League Central lead on the Chicago Cubs to two games, thanks to the Cubs’ loss in Cincinnati.

St. Louis took a 1-0 lead in the third inning when Marcell Ozuna grounded a two-out RBI single just under the glove of diving shortstop Orlando Arcia, scoring Matt Carpenter. Carpenter walked to start the inning and reached scoring position on a sacrifice bunt by Harrison Bader.

The Cardinals failed on a chance to expand their edge in the sixth when Yadier Molina led off with a single and Dexter Fowler drew a walk to chase starter Junior Guerra. Josh Hader came out of the bullpen and struck out the next three hitters to quell the threat, giving him 80 whiffs in 39 2/3 innings this year.

Guerra got a no-decision after a five-inning outing. He permitted three hits and a run, walking four and fanning seven.

St. Louis center fielder Tommy Pham was ejected with two outs in the top of the first inning for arguing balls and strikes. Pham was punched out by plate umpire Tim Timmons earlier in the inning and yelled at him from the dugout after a strike call on Ozuna.

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