Published November 20, 2014
A tough inning for Chris Narveson put Milwaukee in a hole early, and despite a late rally, the Brewers fell short against Washington.
Rickie Weeks had three hits — including a two-run home run for Milwaukee, which had won their previous four games before falling 4-3 in 10 innings to the Nationals on Friday night.
Weeks doubled with two outs in the ninth inning off Sean Burnett, who blew his first save after converting his first three. He scored on Carlos Gomez's single to tie the score at 3.
"I thought we battled," Braun said. "Two outs, ninth inning, their closer was throwing the ball well and we got two hits. I felt like we battled back. You're going to lose some of those games, you're going to win some of those games, but we fought. It wasn't a game I thought we necessarily gave away."
With one out in the 10th inning, Washington's Jayson Werth grounded to shortstop Yuniesky Betancourt, who threw wildly to first. Werth took second on the error. Werth then stole third without a throw.
"We knew he was going to steal," Milwaukee manager Ron Roenicke said. "I could tell what Werth was doing. I could tell he was trying to time him, and he had him timed well."
After the stolen base, the Brewers played a five-man infielder with left fielder Ryan Braun playing between first and second. Adam LaRoche bounced to first against Zach Braddock (0-1) and Prince Fielder's throw home pulled catcher Jonathan Lucroy off the plate, and Werth scored the winning run.
"(Fielder) didn't get a grip," Roenicke said. "That's the thing when they're going on contact at third base — that's why you do it, because it puts pressure on the infield."
Fielder didn't make any excuses.
"He's just fast," Fielder said. "He's just faster than me. He was safe."
The Brewers outhit the Nationals 10 to 5, and when the error gave Werth a chance he felt he had to make something happen with his speed.
"Being aggressive on the basepaths, I think, is important," Werth said. "We've been talking about it early in spring training and just took advantage of the situation. We're having a hard time getting the bats going. When that's the case, you have to do something extra a little bit."
Weeks hit a long two-run home run to the back of the left field bullpen with two out in the fifth. It was his fourth homer of the season and made it 3-2.
Narveson, who hadn't allowed a run in his first 14 innings — the longest to begin a season by a Milwaukee left-handed starter — Narveson walked three in a three-run second inning. He had given up four walks in his first two starts.
"Anytime you come back and tie it in the ninth you feel pretty good," Roenicke said. "But we gave them some runs today. That was the difference."
Narveson gave up three runs and five hits and struck out five. He allowed four walks in 5 2-3 innings.
The Nationals took a 3-0 lead against Narveson in the second. LaRoche led off with a walk. Singles to Wilson Ramos and Michael Morse loaded the bases, and with one out, Narveson walked No. 8 hitter Jerry Hairston and then Nationals starter Tom Gorzelanny — on four pitches — to score LaRoche and Ramos. Morse scored on Danny Espinosa's sacrifice fly.
"It was kind of a tough inning," Narveson said. "I kind of got off track. I lost a little bit of focus there."
NOTES: Brewers RHP Zack Greinke threw 30 pitches in a simulated game. If he feels fine on Saturday, Milwaukee will send him on a rehab assignment. "It was pretty good all around," Greinke said. "It might not be the sharpest or the best, but I'll be ready. I feel like I can execute some stuff, just get the endurance and hopefully get ready." ... Greinke thinks he'll start at Class A Brevard County. ... Milwaukee manager Ron Roenicke said that OF Corey Hart, who's on the 15-day disabled list with an oblique strain, needs three or four more batting practices before he can be sent on a rehab assignment. ... Brewers OF Nyjer Morgan, who was traded from the Nationals last month, did not play. He's batting .476.