Thornburg shut out the Chicago Cubs on just two hits over six innings and Halton hit his first career grand slam to power a five-run first inning as the Brewers won their fourth game in a row, 7-0 on Wednesday night at Miller Park.
For Halton, it was his third home run in the last seven days and his fourth of the season. Thornburg (3-1), meanwhile, has been remarkably consistent as a starter for the Crew. In six starts this season, he has worked six innings in each of them and has six quality starts.
He has now allowed five earned runs over 36 innings as a starter, a microscopic 1.25 ERA, and won for the second straight start.
The only downside on the night for the Brewers was the health status of All-Star shortstop Jean Segura. Segura walked in the bottom of the first and later scored on Aramis Ramirez’s single, but grabbed his right hamstring as he returned to the dugout.
The Brewers said Segura strained his right hamstring and listed him as day-to-day. He will be evaluated again on Thursday, per Fox Sports Wisconsin. Mike Vassallo, the Brewers’ senior director of media relations, announced Segura’s status via Twitter.
— Mike Vassallo (@MikeVassallo13) September 19, 2013
Ramirez’s first-inning single put runners at first and second and Khris Davis—starting just his second game in the last 10 because of a sore wrist—coaxed a walk from Chicago starter Chris Rusin (2-5), setting the stage for Halton’s blast.
The Crew added a run in the bottom of the fourth on Davis’ 10th home run of the season, a bomb into the Brewer bullpen in left-center field. Rusin allowed six runs on just four hits over four innings.
Milwaukee got its final run in the fifth. Norichika Aoki was plunked on the right foot with a pitch from reliever Alberto Cabrera and hobbled to first base.
But Aoki recovered sufficiently to steal both second and third—making him the third Brewer this season with at least 20 stolen bases—and scored when Carlos Gomez lined a double off the wall in left-center.
Rookie Jimmy Nelson, making his third big-league appearance, worked two scoreless innings, allowing a hit and two walks with two strikeouts, and Michael Blazer—another first-year player—allowed a hit and got a punchout in a scoreless ninth inning.
Chicago got just four hits in all and didn’t get a runner as far as second base until Ryan Sweeney doubled off Nelson with one out in the seventh. The Cubs never got a runner as far as third base.
It’s the first time the Brewers have won four straight games since June 7-10 and they won their second straight series on the homestand while improving to 13-5 against Chicago this season. The teams conclude their season series Thursday afternoon at Miller Park, when Kyle Lohse (10-9) takes the hill for the Brewers against Jake Arrieta (2-2) for the Cubs.
Game time is 1:10 p.m. Central Time on Fox Sports Wisconsin.
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