Chicago, IL – Ryan Braun, Aramis Ramirez and Corey Hart hit back-to-back-to-back home runs in a nine-run ninth inning, as the Milwaukee Brewers blew open a close game at Wrigley Field and ran away with a 15-4 victory over the Chicago Cubs.
Braun went 4-for-6 with a home run, three runs scored and five RBI, while Ramirez homered twice and drove in four in the Brewers' sixth win in seven games. Carlos Gomez had four of the club's 21 hits, including a solo homer.
"Obviously in the ninth it got out of hand, but it was a really close game and a tightly contested game up until that point," Braun said.
Marco Estrada (2-5) earned a second straight victory after allowing three unearned runs on six hits and three walks in a five-inning start.
Justin Germano (2-4) surrendered five runs on 10 hits over five-plus innings to take the loss. Brett Jackson's solo homer highlighted Chicago's offense.
The Cubs, who were coming off a series win over the Rockies, were within two runs, 6-4, before Alex Hinshaw's forgettable outing in the ninth.
The reliever walked Norichika Aoki to start the inning and gave up a single to Rickie Weeks in front of Braun, who launched his 35th home run of the season onto Waveland Avenue.
Ramirez followed with his first multi-home run game with the Brewers, and Hart ended Hinshaw's night by hammering a pitch into the last row of seats in left- center.
Lendy Castillo was just as ineffective in relief as he gave up four more runs, one coming on an RBI single by Braun.
"Those guys have to somehow get through those innings," Cubs manager Dale Sveum said of his bullpen. "Obviously they didn't accomplish that."
Castillo's effort was bad enough for Sveum to bring in utilityman Joe Mather to pitch. Mather allowed a pinch-hit RBI single to Jeff Bianchi before retiring pinch-hitter Martin Maldonado for the final out.
Ramirez gave the Brewers an early lead when his NL-leading 43rd double knocked in Braun in the first inning.
The Cubs responded with three two-out, run-scoring hits in the fifth. Anthony Rizzo blooped one off Ramirez's glove to plate David DeJesus and scored on a double by Alfonso Soriano, who crossed home on Starlin Castro's base hit.
Braun and Ramirez were at it again in the fifth, with the former hitting an RBI double down the left-field line and the latter crushing a two-run homer to left-center for a 4-3 lead.
Aoki tacked on an RBI single in the sixth and kept the Brewers in front with a sliding grab in right field to strand a pair in the seventh.
Jackson and Gomez traded solo shots in the sixth and eighth, respectively.
The top four hitters in Milwaukee's lineup -- Aoki, Weeks, Braun and Ramirez -- combined for 12 hits, nine runs and 10 RBI ... Ramirez played eight-plus years for the Cubs before signing with the Brewers in the offseason ... Chicago struck out 15 times, eight against Estrada ... The last Cubs position player to pitch was Gary Gaetti on July 3, 1999 against the Phillies ... The Brewers swept last week's series with the Cubs and have taken six straight in the series overall.