MILWAUKEE - Pinch-hitter Rowdy Tellez launched a three-run homer with two outs in the seventh inning to put the Milwaukee Brewers ahead for good in a 4-2 victory over the Pittsburgh Pirates on Wednesday afternoon.
The Brewers trailed 2-1 with two outs in the seventh when Luis Urías started the rally by taking a 3-2 pitch that was just low from Kyle Keller (0-1). Manny Piña followed by hitting a ground-ball single that went off the glove of diving third baseman Ke’Bryan Hayes.
Left-handed reliever Chasen Shreve came out of the bullpen and got two quick strikes on the left-handed Tellez. But after he worked the count to 2-2, Tellez delivered a shot that traveled an estimated 423 feet and reached the second deck of the stands in right center.
Tellez is batting .340 (18 of 53) with five homers and 16 RBIs in 21 games since the Brewers acquired him from Toronto on July 6. He hit .209 with four homers and eight RBIs in 50 games with the Blue Jays.
Brent Suter (10-5) pitched one inning of scoreless relief to earn the win after Brewers starter Freddy Peralta struck out nine and allowed six hits, two runs and two walks in six innings. Devin Williams worked around a leadoff walk in the ninth to earn his first career save.
Pittsburgh's Bryan Reynolds went 2 of 2, walked twice and scored both of the Pirates' runs. The Pirates were 0 for 9 with runners in scoring position and left nine men on base.
The Brewers won two of three from the Pirates and remain 7 1/2 games ahead of Cincinnati in the NL Central.
Pirates left-hander Steven Brault gave up one run over four innings in his season debut after recovering from a strained lat in his throwing arm. His last start came when he threw seven scoreless innings against the Chicago Cubs on Sept. 22.
Brault gave up three hits, struck out two and walked one.
The Brewers opened the scoring in the third when Kolten Wong doubled and came home on Eduardo Escobar’s two-out single.
Pittsburgh answered with two outs in the fourth as Jacob Stallings doubled home Reynolds, who reached on a leadoff walk. The Pirates took a 2-1 lead in the sixth as Reynolds led off with a triple into the right-field corner and scored on John Nogowski’s sacrifice fly.
The Pirates squandered other opportunities.
Pittsburgh got three hits off Peralta in the first inning but failed to score, thanks in part to Piña throwing out Hoy Park on an attempted steal. Kevin Newman hit a leadoff double in the fifth but was left stranded at third. Ben Gamel struck out looking with runners on third and second to end the top of the seventh.
Pirates: Director of sports medicine Todd Tomczyk said RHP Trevor Cahill has multiple fractures in his left foot and will be re-examined next week. Tomczyk called it an injury that sidelines a player for eight to 12 weeks.
Brewers: RHP John Axford is out for the season after leaving Monday's game with an elbow injury, and LHP Eric Lauer has gone on the COVID-19 injured list. OF Christian Yelich could return from the COVID list in time to play in this weekend's series with the NL West-leading San Francisco Giants.
Pirates: Open a four-game series at Cincinnati on Thursday. Scheduled starters are RHP Wil Crowe (3-5, 5.40 ERA) for the Pirates and RHP Sonny Gray (3-6, 4.26) for the Reds.
Brewers: Off Thursday before starting a three-game home series with the Giants on Friday. RHP Corbin Burnes (6-4 2.46) will pitch for the Brewers on Friday.