Axford gets long save, McGehee HRs in Brewers win

MILWAUKEE (AP) — Casey McGehee hit a three-run homer and rookie closer John Axford converted his first six-out save to help Milwaukee's bullpen hold on in the Brewers' 7-5 victory over the Minnesota Twins on Tuesday night.

Rickie Weeks homered for Milwaukee, which built a 7-3 lead until reliever Todd Coffey allowed a two-run double to Delmon Young with no outs in the eighth.

Axford entered, getting pinch-hitter Jim Thome to pop up. He walked Nick Punto, but doubled off Young on Jason Kubel's broken bat liner back to the mound.

In the ninth, Axford allowed a two-out single to Joe Mauer, then struck out Justin Morneau for his fifth straight save since taking the role from career saves leader Trevor Hoffman.

Brewers starter Chris Narveson (6-4) trailed 3-0 after failing to retire the first six batters. He didn't get an out until his 30th pitch, but helped himself and the Brewers' rally with the go-ahead RBI in the fourth after McGehee's homer and went on to retire 14 of the final 16 Twins he faced.

Twins starter Scott Baker (6-6) struck out seven coming off a career-best 12 in his last start. He allowed nine hits and five runs, dooming him from pitching past the sixth inning.

Milwaukee is beginning a stretch of 16 of the next 20 games at home and desperately need to make up ground before the All-Star game, improving to 10 games under .500.

The AL Central-leading Twins have been one of the Brewers' toughest tests in interleague play, winning the last five series between the clubs. Milwaukee got off to a good start to stop that streak.

Trailing 3-0 in the fourth, Prince Fielder doubled on a weak pop over the third baseman's head and went to third on Ryan Braun's single. McGehee reached 50 RBIs with his homer to right field.

McGehee's homer was the biggest sign yet he's on his way to ending his June swoon after coming in with a .188 average this month.

Jim Edmonds followed McGehee's homer with a double, just eluding the tag of the shortstop Punto and Narveson singled on a soft flare to left with two outs to give Milwaukee a 4-3 lead.

Alcides Escobar's two-out single in the sixth made it 5-3. Reliever Alex Burnett allowed Weeks' homer leading off the seventh and Braun's run-scoring double three batters later before the Twins tried to rally.

Narveson fell behind 3-0 after loading the bases with no outs on a hit batter and two walks before allowing three straight singles, including a two-run effort by Morneau. He's allowed 15 runs in the first inning of his 11 starts, but settled down again. Minnesota got just two more hits off him before he left after the fifth.

NOTES: Kubel's 12-game hitting streak ended after entering as a pinch-hitter in the seventh. ... Brewers' fourth-round draft pick Hunter Morris was at Miller Park. He said he didn't have any plans for his $218,700 signing bonus. ... Brewers manager Ken Macha stopped his briefing with the media when former Twins RHP and current TV commentator Bert Blyleven walked by. "If you haven't voted for him, what's wrong with you? Sixty shutouts! You've got to be kidding me. That should put him in the Hall of Fame alone."