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Gerut hits for sixth cycle in Brewers' history

Gerut hits for sixth cycle in Brewers' history

PHOENIX -- Jody Gerut knew he had completed the cycle when he stood at second base on Saturday, but he didn't appreciate it until he got back to the dugout.

Gerut socked a ninth-inning double to become the sixth player in Brewers' history to hit for the cycle and the first in six years. He homered leading off the second inning, singled in the third, hit a run-scoring triple in the fifth inning and blasted a two-run double in the ninth. Gerut eventually scored the Brewers' final run in a 17-3 rout and found a dugout full of smiling faces.

He's the first Brewers player to hit for the cycle since Chad Moeller did it against the Reds in April 2004 at Miller Park. The four other Brewers cycles have all come on the road: Mike Hegan in '76, Charlie Moore in '80, Robin Yount in '88 and Paul Molitor in '91.

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Gerut is the first player to hit for the cycle in the Major Leagues this season.

"It's unbelievable," Gerut said. "The feeling of it climaxed in the dugout with everybody clapping for you, genuinely happy for you. It was unbelievable. It was better than standing on second base. It was unlike anything I've experienced in the game."

Unbelievable was an apropos word considering that Gerut made just his fourth start this season on Saturday and entered the game with four hits in 30 at-bats all year. He was 1-for-21 against right-handed pitchers, but got the nod from manager Ken Macha to start against Arizona righty Cesar Valdez after Macha consulted with bench coach Willie Randolph and hitting coach Dale Sveum.

The more Gerut plays, the more he seems to produce. He was 4-for-41 with the Brewers following a surprise trade from San Diego last May, but boosted his numbers with regular playing time down the stretch. Gerut hit .283 with five homers over his final 55 games to finish the year with a more palatable .230 average.

He could see more playing time in the coming days while regular Brewers center fielder Carlos Gomez nurses a left shoulder injury. Gerut should certainly start Sunday against D-backs right-hander Ian Kennedy as the Brewers aim for a series sweep.

"It will be hard to keep him out of there," Macha said.

Gerut was already a double shy of the cycle after five innings on Saturday, but flew out to left field in the sixth inning and grounded out to the pitcher in the seventh. He admitted to a reporter on the D-backs' postgame television broadcast that he was thinking about the cycle and those missed opportunities.

"A lot of things had to go right to get another shot," he said.

He got it, and sent a fly ball to the wall in center field. Some of Gerut's teammates gave him a hard time for stopping at second base. Not winning pitcher Randy Wolf.

"I would have held up at second, too!" Wolf said. "Are you kidding me? Two triples are overrated. I would rather have the cycle."

Seriously, though, Gerut thought it was the right decision, even in hindsight.

"I think in a closer game, I probably would have pressed it or really tried [for third]," Gerut said. "There were two outs as well, and you don't want to make the third out at third base."

The cycle was the first of Gerut's career and the third allowed by D-backs pitchers in franchise history. Before Gerut, the last player to do it was the Astros' Luke Scott, in 2006.

"I played with Jody in San Diego and he's an awesome guy," Wolf said. "Off the bench, he has quality at-bats every time. For him to get a chance to start and hit for the cycle, which some guys never get a chance to do in their whole career, is pretty awesome."

Adam McCalvy is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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