GOODYEAR, Ariz. (AP) Scooter Gennett opened the game with a solo homer and Jonathan Lucroy had a two-run shot in the first inning to lead the Milwaukee Brewers to an 8-5 victory over the Cincinnati Reds on Friday night.
Gennett’s homer was his first of the spring and Lucroy followed a single by Jean Segura with his third home run before Raisel Iglesias retired a batter.
”It isn’t only the runs. It’s the at-bats,” Brewers manager Ron Roenicke said. ”We’re doing a great job. Hopefully we can keep it up.”
Matt Garza had a slow start giving up two runs in the first but settled in pitching out of a first-and-third, no-out situation. Garza gave up five runs in 5 2-3 innings in his next to last tuneup for the season.
”I’m ready,” Garza said. ”I threw 90 pitches and all you need is 75 and you’re ready to go. I have one more start but I’m ready now.”
The first inning runs off Garza came on an infield hit by Billey Hamilton, a check-swing hit by Joey Votto and a high chop from Devin Mesoraco.
”Garza’s stuff is ahead of last year,” Roenicke said. ”He’s making a lot of good pitches. He keeps having freaky stuff happen to him like the first inning.”
Brandon Phillips had two doubles and four RBIs, and Votto was 2 for 3 with an RBI.
Iglesias allowed five hits and six runs – three earned – in his four-inning stint, his longest of the spring. The Cuban pitcher, who signed a seven-year, $27-million deal, may fill in for Homer Bailey the first week of the season.
”I need to work on command and attacking hitters,” Iglesias said.
Lucroy had two hits and Carlos Gomez hit two doubles.
Brewers: Ryan Braun has shaken off a thumb injury to hit .571 after he was 0 for 13 to start the spring.
Reds: Homer Bailey and Johnny Cueto pitched in minor league games in the afternoon. Bailey will miss the start of the season as he regains strength after elbow surgery. Cueto left to attend his mother Cristina, who had open heart surgery in the Dominican Republic. He is still on track to be the Reds’ opening day starter.
Brewers: Garza will pitch the second game of the season. He made his fifth spring start against the Reds. ”It was fine,” Garza said. ”It’s not about results. It’s about being ready and healthy. I’m not as crisp as I want to be but 90 pitches and I felt I could keep going.”
Reds: Iglesias started for the third time in his sixth outing. He is one of the Reds’ early season choices to make an early season start in place of Bailey. ”I have to work on command of my pitches,” said Iglesias, who was a relief pitcher in Cuba.
”He has four really good pitches,” Bryan Price said. ”He can start for us and if not could easily go to the bullpen and pitch multiple innings.”
Brewers: RHP Wiley Peralta will start against Cleveland’s Zach McAllister.
Reds:Aroldis Chapman will get a rare start against the Cubs while Mike Leake pitches in a minor league game. RHP Gonzalez German will pitch for the Cubs.