Maldonado’s single in 11th lifts Brewers over Cubs
MILWAUKEE (AP) Martin Maldonado gave his mother a day to remember.
First, the Milwaukee Brewers catcher hit a home run with his mom, Jeannette, watching in the stands at Miller Park.
Then, Maldonado singled over the Cubs’ drawn-in outfield with one out in the 11th inning to give Milwaukee a 3-2 win Sunday over Chicago.
”I couldn’t be happier that I have my mom here on Mother’s Day, first time,” Maldonado said. ”I love you, mom.”
Maldonado also hit a solo homer in the seventh in what was a memorable end to Craig Counsell’s first week as manager since taking over for the fired Ron Roenicke.
”It is a great way to end it. It was another great team win,” Counsell said.
The Brewers, who beat the Cubs for the second straight day, are 4-3 under Counsell since a 7-18 start. Milwaukee had also won two straight in Chicago last week before letting go of Roenicke.
Ryan Braun doubled off Jason Motte (1-1) to begin the 11th. Two intentional walks sandwiched around a flyout by Khris Davis loaded the bases, and Maldonado’s deep drive sailed over right fielder Jorge Soler.
Michael Blazek (3-0) pitched a perfect top of the 11th, finishing with strikeouts of Anthony Rizzo and pinch-hitting pitcher Travis Wood.
Chicago had a chance in the 10th after David Ross led off with a single. But the inning ended with a 5-4-3 double play when Ross was called for interference on second baseman Scooter Gennett’s relay throw.
Ross argued with second base umpire Bruce Dreckman and manager Joe Maddon took up the animated discussion.
An inning later, the Brewers, outfitted with pink gear and bats, were celebrating a Mother’s Day win in extra innings.
A backup catcher thrust into the starting role last month following a foot injury to All-Star starter Jonathan Lucroy, Maldonado finished with three hits.
He spotted his mother in the stands after his homer tied the game at 1.
”I looked over and she was jumping around,” Maldonado said. ”We (will) have a great dinner later tonight. I think I’ll enjoy that more than the game.”
Ross said he was ”very surprised” after being told by the umpire that he was called for obstruction for throwing an elbow. He appeared to slide into second just after a jumping Gennett released his throw.
”Did it look dirty? No,” Ross said. ”I told the umpire how I felt, and there is not much I can do after that.”
Manager Joe Maddon was just as surprised with the call.
”I understand if you grab someone and try to take him down, that is different a story,” he said. ”I fail to see the interpretation on that play
Motte allowed two hits in his one-third of an inning to cap off a tough weekend for the bullpen. Zac Rosscup gave up back-to-back solo shots to seventh-place hitter Maldonado and Elian Herrera to lead off the bottom of the seventh that squandered a 1-0 lead.
”I really felt strongly about `Cup right there. That is one thing I did not see coming, was a couple of homers from the bottom of the batting order,” manager Joe Maddon said.
The bullpen allowed four hits and four runs in two innings on Friday, a 7-6 win for Chicago, before allowing six runs and five hits in four innings of a 12-4 loss on Saturday.
Pedro Strop and James Russell were bright spots among Cubs relievers after combining for three scoreless innings before turning it over to Motte in the 11th.
Brewers: CF Carlos Gomez struck out looking on three pitches to lead off the bottom of the first. It was his first at-bat since missing a couple days with a sore hip. He finished 1 for 5. … 3B Aramis Ramirez will visit the team doctor after missing a third straight game with lower back tightness.
Cubs: Ace Jon Lester (2-2) takes the mound against the New York Mets when Chicago returns to Wrigley Field for a seven-game homestand. Lester is 2-0 with an 0.64 ERA in his two starts in May.
Brewers: Wily Peralta (1-4) opens a three-game interleague series at home against the Chicago White Sox. The right-hander has made three quality starts, though opponents are hitting .307 off him so far this season.
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