Nelson struggles in Brewers' loss to Phillies
PHILADELPHIA (AP) Jimmy Nelson was disappointed he couldn't do more to help his ballclub.
The Brewers' right-hander had his shortest outing of the season, lasting just four innings in Milwaukee's 6-3 loss to the Philadelphia Phillies on Friday night.
Nelson (5-4) entered leading Brewers starters in wins, ERA, strikeouts and innings and had a 1.57 ERA in his last four starts. But he was pounded by a Phillies team that had been scuffling offensively.
He gave up six runs and seven hits with one strikeout and three walks.
''I kind of put it on myself, falling behind too many guys,'' Nelson said. ''That game could be totally different if I just execute a couple of pitches.''
Cameron Rupp homered and doubled and Andres Blanco also went deep as the Phillies ended their season-worst seven-game skid.
''We need to score more runs,'' Phillies manager Pete Mackanin said. ''Tonight was a good indication that we're still capable.''
The Phillies had scored just 12 runs while batting .189 and striking out 63 times during their losing streak. They homered twice in a game for the first time at home this season while reaching six runs for just the sixth time in 2016.
''Anytime we score six runs, it's a big deal around here,'' Mackanin said. ''I'm hoping it's going to loosen us up a little bit.''
Rupp led off the third with an opposite-field homer, and the Phillies took a 3-0 lead in the inning on RBI singles by Maikel Franco and Jimmy Paredes. Philadelphia made it 6-0 in the fourth on Blanco's three-run shot to right.
''We knew at some point it's going to turn,'' Rupp said.
Andrew Bailey (3-0) pitched 1 2/3 hitless innings of relief to earn the victory and help Philadelphia end an eight-game skid to the Brewers at home that spanned three seasons.
Jeanmar Gomez pitched a scoreless ninth for his 18th save in 19 chances
Jonathan Villar homered for the second straight night for Milwaukee, which lost for just the fourth time in 11 games. The Brewers had won four in a row on the road.
''We had some opportunities, but we just couldn't get that next hit,'' manager Craig Counsell said.
Nelson blamed himself.
''Pretty much it was just me that didn't hold up my part of the job today,'' Nelson said.
Phillies starter Vince Velasquez couldn't get out of the fifth inning, but Bailey got the final two outs to avoid further damage after Velasquez had loaded the bases with no outs. Milwaukee did get two runs in the inning on Villar's sacrifice fly and Ryan Braun's groundout.
Velasquez gave up two runs on four hits with six strikeouts and three walks in 4 1/3 innings. After starting the season 4-1 with a 1.44 ERA in his first five starts, including a 16-strikeout performance in his second outing, the right-hander is 1-1 with a 6.00 ERA in his last six starts.
''I'm trying to be too precise instead of going out and pitching and doing what I was doing at the beginning of the season,'' Velasquez said. ''I don't know what's going on right now. I've got to figure something out. It's one of those stages where you're dealing with adversity.''
Villar's two-out homer to left in the seventh off David Hernandez pulled the Brewers within 6-3.
Lucroy went 1 for 3 and is now batting .500 (12-for-24) over his last seven games.
The teams wore retro jerseys from 1976 with the Phillies sporting the pillbox cap popularized by the Pittsburgh Pirates teams of the era.
Brewers: Domingo Santana returned from the 15-day DL due to a sore shoulder. Santana started in right field and went 1 for 3 with a double. To make room for Santana, Milwaukee demoted Keon Broxton to Triple-A Colorado Springs.
Phillies: LF Cody Asche was 0 for 3 in his second game back in the lineup after missing the first 53 games with a right oblique strain.
Milwaukee RHP Junior Guerra (3-1, 3.47) opposes Phillies RHP Jeremy Hellickson (4-3, 3.68) in the third game of the four-game series.