MILWAUKEE (TSN-WSAU) Alcides Escobar's two-run triple sparked a six-run seventh inning as the Milwaukee Brewers took a 7-2 win over the Pittsburgh Pirates in the opener of a three-game set.
Ryan Braun and Corey Hart each drove in two runs while Jonathan Lucroy scored twice and drove in one for the Brewers, who snapped a four-game slide. Chris Narveson (10-7) worked seven innings and was charged with two runs on seven hits with a walk and eight strikeouts to get the win.
"I think it was just execution and staying away from that big inning," Narveson responded when asked about the key to his performance. "I know there have been times when you have a mental lapse and you don't execute the pitches that you want. I just tried to focus through the game and that paid off."
Chris Snyder hit a solo home run while Ronny Cedeno drove in the other for the Pirates, who had won three of four coming in. James McDonald (2-4) was charged with six runs on seven hits with two walks and seven strikeouts over 6 1/3 innings in the loss.
The Pirates grabbed the lead in the second as Lastings Milledge hit a one-out double and came home when Cedeno singled later in the frame.
Snyder's solo homer in the fifth extended Pittsburgh's lead to 2-0.
Milwaukee had just one baserunner through the first five innings, but got on board in the sixth. Lucroy singled to start the frame and moved to second on Narveson's sacrifice bunt. After Rickie Weeks walked, Hart singled to make it a 2-1 game.
In the seventh inning, the Brewers exploded for six runs to take the lead.
With two on and one out, Escobar laced a triple to right to put the hosts in front. Lucroy followed with a single to score Escobar and Joe Inglett singled to bring Chris Resop into the game.
Weeks struck out for the second out, but Hart followed with an RBI double and Braun's two-run double gave the Brewers a 7-2 lead.
"We just couldn't get out of that inning," said Buccos skipper John Russell. "McDonald threw the ball really well and deserved a better fate. The only negative was the leadoff walk that started their rally."
Kameron Loe and Zach Braddock worked a scoreless eighth while John Axford struck out the side in the ninth to close the win.
The Brewers and Pirates play Saturday at Miller Park at 5:35pm.