Nelson, Brewers beat Padres 4-1
MILWAUKEE (AP) Jimmy Nelson gave the Milwaukee Brewers just exactly what they needed, a victory.
Nelson scattered three hits over 6 2-3 solid innings, Khris Davis drove in two runs and the Milwaukee Brewers snapped a six-game losing streak with a 4-1 win over the San Diego Padres on Tuesday night.
The Padres scored an unearned run off Nelson (9-9) in the fourth, but the big right-hander, who threw a season-high 112 pitches, allowed nothing more. He walked one and struck out four before leaving with a 2-1 lead and two out in the seventh.
''He just continues to take the next step when he goes out there,'' Brewers manager Craig Counsell said. ''He's making pitches. He fell behind in the count at times tonight, but was able to get right back into counts.''
Nelson is in his first full season after making one start in four games in 2013 and 12 in 14 games last season. The 25-year-old won his third straight decision in four starts and came within one out of going seven innings for three consecutive games.
''We've had a couple of experiences now going out for the seventh,'' Counsell said. ''You like to be able to feel like you can send him out there for that next inning when his pitches are a little up there.''
Nelson has won six of his last eight starts.
''It's really nice to throw a run together,'' Nelson said. ''It's good for your mentality, too, not having all the ups and downs like a rollercoaster ride. It's to just kind of stay on an even plane, and consistency gives everybody confidence.''
Padres manager Pat Murphy credited Nelson's effort, but then noted that Justin Upton, with the team-leading 18 home runs and second-most 57 RBIs, missed the game with a sore right thumb.
''We missed our 4-hole hitter, that's for sure,'' Murphy said. ''You got to do the little things, especially when your guy is out. We didn't do that tonight.''
Upton suffered the injury making a play against the wall in Monday night's game.
''He was hitting his spots,'' Murphy said of Nelson. ''He wouldn't throw the ball on the white. He kept the ball on the edges. He had great stuff. Good breaking ball when he needed it.''
Jeremy Jeffress retired pinch-hitter Brett Wallace to end the seventh inning and hold the 2-1 lead.
Davis, who struck out with runners in scoring position for Milwaukee in the first and fifth, knocked in a run with a two-out base hit in the third, snapping a 2-17 slump, and a sacrifice fly in the seventh.
Francisco Rodriguez pitched the ninth for his 24th save in as many chances.
Jean Segura's run-scoring grounder drove in the last run which was reviewed and confirmed. Adam Lind just beat the sweeping tag by catcher Derek Norris in the seventh.
Elian Herrera's RBI single in the Brewers fourth made up for his costly two-base throwing error in the Padres' half of that inning.
Matt Kemp took second on third baseman Herrera's miscue, advanced on a wild pitch and scored on a sacrifice fly by Yonder Alonso to tie the game. Herrera's base hit scored Shane Peterson who tripled off Andrew Cashner (4-11).
Yangervis Solarte extended his hitting streak to a career-high 10 games with single off Jeffress in the eighth. With runners at the corners, Will Smith came on with one out and struck out Yonder Alonso and Jedd Gyorko.
Cashner allowed two runs on eight hits over six innings. He walked four and struck out five.
''Cash was good,'' Murphy said. ''He pitched well enough to win, but not on this particular night.''
Padres: OF Justin Upton missed Tuesday night's game with a sore right thumb. He hurt it making a play against the wall in Monday night's game. He's day-to-day, but was available to pinch hit.
Brewers: More experience should help 23-year-old right-handed reliever Corey Knebel. He's appeared in 26 games so far and made eight with Detroit last season before coming to Milwaukee in an offseason trade with Texas. ''It wasn't necessarily his elbow, but because he had so few innings,'' Counsell said. ''You just didn't feel like there was a foundation under him necessarily. It's not going into our thinking as much as when he was called up.'' Knebel, in his second stint, has a 2.76 ERA.
Padres: RHP Ian Kennedy (6-9, 4.44 ERA), reinstated from paternity leave on Tuesday, looks to win his third straight decision in his 20th start of the season. He took a no-decision on July 31, allowing two runs on four hits with two walks and five strikeouts in the 8-3 win over Miami on July 31.
Brewers: RHP Taylor Jungmann (5-3, 2.23 ERA) looks to snap a two-game losing streak, the longest of his rookie season, when he makes his 11th start since being recalled from Triple-A Colorado Springs on June 9.
Solarte's 10-game hitting streak is tied with Justin Upton (April 6 - 15)for the season longest.
WINS ARE HARD TO FIND
The Brewers are 3-11 over their last 14 games.