Yelich stays hot as Brewers defeat Royals 9-6 to complete sweep
MILWAUKEE (AP) — Christian Yelich homered in the first inning and scored on a bizarre play as part of Milwaukee’s seven-run outburst in the third as the Brewers defeated the Kansas City Royals 9-6 on Sunday.
Brice Turang added a three-run shot and Mike Brosseau also homered as the NL Central-leading Brewers completed a three-game sweep.
Kansas City’s Salvador Perez homered for the second straight day, Bobby Witt Jr. had a homer and a two-run double and Hunter Dozier also went deep. The Royals have homered in 13 straight games for the longest active streak in the majors.
The Brewers capitalized on a strong weekend from Yelich, who homered twice on Saturday and followed that up by going 2 for 4 with a solo shot and RBI single in the series finale. After hitting just .228 (23 of 101) with three homers and 11 RBIs in April, Yelich is batting .348 (16 of 46) with four homers and 12 RBIs in May.
Yelich’s most exciting play Sunday came on the basepaths.
After his RBI single cut Kansas City’s lead to 4-2 and put runners on the corners with nobody out in the third, Yelich attempted to steal second.
That’s when things got weird.
Royals shortstop Maikel Garcia missed the throw from Perez, and Joey Wiemer raced home from third as the ball went into the outfield. After sliding into second, Yelich got up and took off for third.
The throw from center fielder Nate Eaton to third base took a couple of bounces and went through Dozier's legs. As the ball started to roll back toward home in foul territory, Yelich headed toward the plate.
Dozier chased down the ball, dove and pushed the ball toward Perez, but his toss couldn’t get there before Yelich slid home safely with the tying run. Garcia and Eaton were charged with errors on the play.
Owen Miller delivered an RBI double later in the third to give Milwaukee its first lead. Miller has now reached base successfully in a career-best 16 straight games.
Jose Cuas replaced Lyles at that point and got Victor Caratini to pop to third, but Turang followed by sending a 2-2 changeup over the center-field wall for a 408-foot blast.
Lyles (0-7) allowed seven runs – all earned – along with four hits and three walks while striking out two in 2 1/3 innings. Lyles owns a 7.14 ERA in his first season with the Royals, who signed him to a two-year, $17 million contract last December.
The game settled down after that wild third inning. The only runs the rest of the day came on Brosseau's homer off Amir Garrett in the seventh and Dozier's drive off Eric Lauer in the ninth.
Lauer (4-4) struck out six and allowed two runs, two walks and two hits over 5 1/3 innings in his first relief appearance since 2021. Milwaukee manager Craig Counsell had said Saturday the Brewers would skip Lauer’s next scheduled start.
Although he had lost each of his last three starts, Lauer was sharp out of the bullpen Sunday. He entered in the fourth and didn't allow a hit until Dozier and Witt homered off him in the ninth.
Brewers starter Colin Rea struck out three but allowed six hits, two walks and four runs in 3 2/3 innings.
Royals: Start a three-game series at San Diego. Scheduled starters for Monday's game are RHP Brad Keller (3-3, 4.31 ERA) for the Royals and RHP Michael Wacha (3-1, 4.81) for the Padres.
Brewers: Begin a three-game series at St. Louis. Monday's scheduled starters are RHP Freddy Peralta (4-2, 3.32) for the Brewers and RHP Jack Flaherty (2-4, 6.18) for the Cardinals.
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Steve Megargee, The Associated Press