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Thames, Perez power Brewers past Reds

April 25, 2017

MILWAUKEE -- Eric Thames did it again, and he is not the only Brewers hitter teeing off against the Reds.Thames continued his habit of hitting a home run every time the teams play, lifting a two-run shot amid a five-run sixth inning in the Brewers' 9-1 win on Tuesday at

MILWAUKEE -- Eric Thames did it again, and he is not the only Brewers hitter teeing off against the Reds.
Thames continued his habit of hitting a home run every time the teams play, lifting a two-run shot amid a five-run sixth inning in the Brewers' 9-1 win on Tuesday at Miller Park. Hernan Perez also homered after hitting a pair of run-scoring triples, and Jonathan Villar drove in four runs for Milwaukee's fifth victory in six games against Cincinnati this season.
"It's incredible," said Brewers starter Zach Davies, referring to Thames. "The guy puts the bat on the ball and it's always looking up."
• Thames responds to suspicions after hot start
The Brewers have scored double-digit runs three times this season, all against the Reds, including the first two games of a series that concludes Wednesday afternoon.

The hit barrage backed Davies, who emerged from four subpar starts to deliver the first glimpse of the pitcher he was last season. Davies held the Reds scoreless over five-plus innings, striking out six and lowering his ERA nearly two runs, from 8.24 to 6.57.
"Getting Zach going in the right direction is really big for us," Brewers manager Craig Counsell said. "The command of the fastball is what it always starts with for Zach. It was much better tonight, just much crisper. It felt crisper from the get-go."

The damage was spread between Reds starter Scott Feldman and reliever Robert Stephenson, who each surrendered four earned runs on five hits. Stephenson was on the mound to start the sixth, when Perez led off with a home run and Thames followed four batters later with another to finish a five-run rally. Thames leads the Major Leagues with 11 home runs, including eight in six games against Cincinnati
"They've been swinging the bat pretty well," Feldman said. "Tonight, I shot myself in the foot a couple of times with some bad walks. They were able to score some runs there. They've been swinging the bats well, but for me, I've got to do a better job and keep the pitch count under control."
Adam Duvall homered in the eighth for the Reds, who have lost nine of 12 games since beginning the season 7-2.
Triple double: Brewers catcher Manny Pina got his running in thanks to Perez, who twice sent Pina sprinting from first to home with RBI triples for the game's first two runs. Perez became the second Major Leaguer with multiple triples in a game this season (the Tigers' Nicholas Castellanos was the other, on April 17) and the first Brewer with multiple triples in a game since Gerardo Parra in July 2015. When Perez added a solo homer in the sixth, he became the first Brewers player with two triples and a homer in the same game since Ted Savage in 1970.

"It just shows he's a valuable player for us: He can provide that kind of offense, with the power, and he played shortstop and center field tonight," Counsell said. "I mean, that's pretty rare. That's a rare guy."

Reds feeling blue: The Reds had chances to make it a different game in the early innings, putting multiple runners on base, including a runner at third, in three straight innings from the second through the fourth. In each instance, Davies denied the run, retiring Reds catcher Tucker Barnhart, Duvall and Feldman to end the frames. Cincinnati finished 0-for-7 with runners in scoring position.
"That's a lot better," Davies said. "I definitely worked on some things between my last start and now, being able to get ahead of guys a lot better, being able to throw everything for strikes."
"He was throwing it over the plate. He was just missing spots and they were on it. The home run, the double and then things are going, and then we get back to Thames, and he hits the second home run of the inning for their club. Robert didn't throw a lot of pitches, he just didn't have a lot of success with location and they squared him up pretty good. -- Reds manager Bryan Price, on Stephenson
Reds:Rookie Davis will be activated from the 10-day disabled list to make his third big league start at 1:40 p.m. ET on Wednesday, in a game being broadcast exclusively on MLB.TV. Davis has been out since he was struck by a pitch on the right forearm on April 11. The Reds will need a solid start to help salvage a game of the three-game series in Milwaukee.
Brewers:Wily Peralta carries a 3.10 ERA in 15 career starts against the Reds into Wednesday's 12:40 p.m. CT series finale at Miller Park on MLB.TV. You can bet he will be focused on stopping the opposing pitcher, as in Peralta's last start, Adam Wainwright homered and drove in four runs in a 6-3 Cardinals win.
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Adam McCalvy has covered the Brewers for since 2001. Follow him on Twitter @AdamMcCalvy, like him on Facebook and listen to his podcast.

Mark Sheldon has covered the Reds for since 2006, and previously covered the Twins from 2001-05. Follow him on Twitter @m_sheldon and Facebook and listen to his podcast.