Night of firsts: Suter gets win, Knebel saves it

Rookie left-hander throws scoreless 7th, while righty seals win in 9th

Night of firsts: Suter gets win, Knebel saves it

MILWAUKEE -- Serious question: When one pitcher earns his first Major League win, and another his first Major League save in the same game, who gets the game ball?

The Brewers were working that out in the clubhouse late Tuesday, after Brent Suter earned the win and Corey Knebel the save in a come-from-behind, 6-4 win over the Rockies at Miller Park. Both players were herded into the shower for the traditional postgame celebration of a big league first, which involves a dousing with everything from the kitchen that will fit into a bucket.

While Suter and Knebel cleaned up, the question lingered. Who gets the baseball?

"I think that they're going to both share the ball," suggested starter Chase Anderson, who was out of the game two innings before the Brewers' three-run rally in the seventh turned the game upside-down. "Mail it back and forth to each other in the offseason, just to kind of caress it and live that moment again."

According to the Elias Sports Bureau, it marked the fourth time in franchise history that one pitcher logged his first Major League win, and another his first save, in the same game. The Brewers' last such instance was Sept. 28, 2013, when Donovan Hand got a win after a blown save, and Alfredo Figaro earned the save in a 10-inning win over the Mets at Citi Field.

The other pairings were current Rockies starter Jorge De La Rosa and Mike Adams in 2005 and Juan Nieves and Dan Plesac in 1986.

Suter leaves bases full

It's unclear how those duos settled the baseball debate, but on Tuesday, Knebel had the ball from the game's final out, and Suter a baseball from his own inning. It was the top of the seventh, when the rookie left-hander, four days removed from his Major League debut in a start at Seattle, worked around two Rockies singles and a walk in a scoreless frame.

Suter's work held the Brewers' deficit at 4-2. They would rally in the bottom of the inning.

"So happy right now," Suter said. "Personally, it's very satisfying, to be honest with you. Very happy to get a big league win. Not many people can say that and I'm very grateful. … We were down two runs. I was hoping we could at least come back and tie it and maybe get a chance for a walk-off win. It was something I was definitely hoping for in the back of my mind. For it to come to fruition, it's extremely awesome."

Hernan Perez's two-run triple gave the Brewers a 5-4 lead that would grow in the eighth on Domingo Santana's sacrifice fly.

With closer Tyler Thornburg unavailable after logging three innings over the previous three days, Carlos Torres pitched the eighth and Knebel was reserved for the first ninth-inning save opportunity of his budding big league career.

"Coming into it, I was nervous in the bullpen. I thought it was going to be a lot different," Knebel said. "And then when I got out there, it was like, 'This is the same thing I've been doing. I've closed in college, in the Minor Leagues, I've set-up in the seventh and the eighth [in the Majors]. It was all like I've been there before."

Veterans Gerardo Parra and Daniel Descalso delivered a single and a walk to bring the go-ahead run to the plate, but Knebel induced a Nick Hundley groundout to end the game.

Then it was celebration time for a pair of big league firsts.

"They are not going to remember the baseball," Brewers manager Craig Counsell said. "They are going to remember the ceremony."

Adam McCalvy has covered the Brewers for since 2001. Follow him on Twitter @AdamMcCalvy, like him on Facebook and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.