PHOENIX -- One day after being on the wrong end of a blowout, the D-backs turned the tables on the Brewers, collecting 12 hits and winning the series with a 9-3 victory on Sunday afternoon at Chase Field.
"It's a great thing for these guys," D-backs manager Chip Hale said. "It makes them feel good especially after last night's [15-6] loss. That was a tough one."
The Brewers built a 2-0 lead behind Jimmy Nelson (6-11), before a wild fourth inning, that saw a pair of excellent defensive plays by Milwaukee, but also a pair of costly errors, that allowed the D-backs to score three runs and grab the lead.
After the Brewers tied the game in the top of the fifth and chased Arizona starter Archie Bradley, the D-backs claimed control with a five-run fifth inning.
"I felt good," Bradley said. "They fouled off a lot of pitches, obviously from the first at-bat of the game [which lasted 14 pitches]. I felt like I competed very well, I just couldn't really put it together the whole way."
In his last four starts, including a pair of losses on this road trip, Nelson is 0-4 with an 8.00 ERA. He's allowed 25 runs (16 earned) on 27 hits, 12 walks and four hit batsmen in 18 innings in those outings.
"I think after the last San Diego start, I was so upset and disappointed about the way I performed that I think it hung around with me for a couple days. That can hurt your next start," Nelson said. "I'm trying to stay positive at this point. Most of the stuff in that game is my fault."
MOMENTS THAT MATTERED
Frantic fourth: The bottom of the fourth featured two web gems, two errors, two hit batsmen, a suicide squeeze and only one ball hit beyond the infield. The result was three Arizona runs and a 3-2 lead. The drama began with Brewers third baseman Jonathan Villar caught Tuffy Gosewisch's bases-loaded popup in foul territory before tumbling over the railing and into the D-backs' dugout. Yasmany Tomas scored from third on what was ruled a sacrifice fly, giving the D-backs their first run. Bradley's suicide squeeze bunt and two Brewers throwing errors put Arizona ahead, before Brewers catcher Martin Maldonado picked off Bradley at third base to keep the inning from getting worse for Milwaukee. More >
D-backs take out insurance: With the struggles of their bullpen, adding on to a lead takes on greater importance for the D-backs. After taking a lead in the fourth, the D-backs came up with a five-run fifth, highlighted by two-run homers from Jake Lamb and pinch-hitter Phil Gosselin.
"Just hitting it where it's pitched," Lamb said of his homer. "The ball was middle away, and I was looking heater first pitch. I got it. Off him, you can't get too big, you've just got to take what he gives you. He left it up a little bit." More >
Bradley squeezes Brewers: Bradley tied up the game when he laid down a squeeze bunt with one out in the fourth that scored Rickie Weeks Jr. and everyone advanced an extra base when Brewers first baseman Andy Wilkins threw wildly to home trying to nail Weeks. On the mound, Bradley had a chance to walk away with the win, but with two outs in the fifth he allowed a game-tying single to Orlando Arcia, ending his day.
"My job was to get the ball down, put it in play, put it fair and see what can happen," Bradley said. "We pride ourselves on getting the bunts down."
Villar's huge series: Villar wasn't thrilled last week about ceding shortstop to Arcia, but he has been pretty good as a third baseman. In three games against the D-backs, Villar reached safely in 12 of 17 plate appearances, going 7-for-12 with six runs scored, five walks and four extra-base hits, including a long solo home run off Bradley in the third.
"What he's been really good at is when he gets to two strikes, he is able to lay off off-speed [pitches] out of the zone," Brewers manager Craig Counsell said. "He extends at-bats. It's not always walking, it's getting another pitch in the at-bat to maybe get a hit with. … That's a really good trait moving forward, because when you're controlling the strike zone with that little experience in the Major Leagues, it definitely doesn't go away."
"Every pitcher goes through this. There's going to be stuff that goes on, and you have to move on to the next pitch. That's the game. Jimmy's preparation is second to none, certainly, but it's got to happen out there and we have to let it happen out there." -- Counsell, on the ongoing struggles of Nelson
WHAT'S NEXT Brewers: The Brewers return home for a seven-game homestand against the Braves and Reds, beginning with Monday's 6:20 p.m. CT series opener against Atlanta. Starter Zach Davies is 9-1 with a 2.86 ERA in his last 16 outings.
D-backs: After taking Monday off, the D-backs open up a three-game series with the Mets at Citi Field on Tuesday with right-hander Zack Greinke scheduled to be activated from the disabled list to start the game. Greinke has been on the DL since June 29 with a left oblique strain.