Entering the final game of the series in Tampa, starting pitcher Yovani Gallardo had not won or lost a decision in four consecutive starts. That streak was snapped Wednesday as the Brewers were able to avoid the sweep against the Tampa Bay Rays 5-0.
After only scoring two runs in the previous three games, the Brewers scored five runs on nine hits and were able to shutout the hottest team in baseball. With the win and loses by the Cardinals, Reds and Pirates the lead in the NL-Central is now 2 games.
Gallardo (6-5, 3.38 ERA) pitched 7 innings for his sixth win of the year only allowing four hits while striking out five. Through the first 6 innings Gallardo had only allowed one hit that came in the opening inning.
Besides Gallardo throwing a great game, backup catcher Martin Maldonado had a career game. Maldonado had there hits and four runs batted in to lead the offensive attack against a potential trade candidate in David Price. The Brewers got to Price early. Price would throw a 30-pitch second inning while allowing two runs.
The scoring started when Maldonado recorded his first hit of the game singling to center scoring Aramis Ramirez and Rickie Weeks.
Then in the third inning, Ramirez singled home Jonathan Lucroy who made his seventh start of the season at first base.
The Brewers would add insurance runs in the sixth when Maldonado doubled home Mark Reynolds and then in the eighth when Maldonado recorded his third hit and fourth run batted in singling home Khris Davis.
In the Month of July the Brewers will finish with a record of (9-18). Despite the losing month, the starting rotation has the third best ERA in baseball since the All-Star break at 2.38.
After an off day Thursday, the Brewers travel to play the St. Louis Cardinals for a three game weekend series. First place is up for grabs as the Cardinals are just 2 1/2 games back. Wily Peralta, Jimmy Nelson and Kyle Lohse are expected to make starts for Milwaukee.