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Yelich sparks rally with first Brewers HR

MLB.com @AdamMcCalvy

PHOENIX -- The Brewers, eager to see how Christian Yelich's power will play with a move to hitter-friendly Miller Park, got a Spring Training sneak peek on Sunday.

Yelich connected for his first Brewers home run to lead off the bottom of the first inning of a 7-3 win over the Dodgers at Maryvale Baseball Park, sparking a two-run rally against left-hander Manny Banuelos. Yelich also walked and scored in the third inning, singled home two runs and scored in the fourth, and walked again in the sixth for his most productive game of the spring.

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PHOENIX -- The Brewers, eager to see how Christian Yelich's power will play with a move to hitter-friendly Miller Park, got a Spring Training sneak peek on Sunday.

Yelich connected for his first Brewers home run to lead off the bottom of the first inning of a 7-3 win over the Dodgers at Maryvale Baseball Park, sparking a two-run rally against left-hander Manny Banuelos. Yelich also walked and scored in the third inning, singled home two runs and scored in the fourth, and walked again in the sixth for his most productive game of the spring.

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Video: LAD@MIL: Yelich collects his second and third RBIs

"He's got some thump. He's got some pop," said fellow Brewers newcomer Lorenzo Cain earlier this month. "I didn't realize how much power he had until I watched him hit. He's a strong kid."

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"What I see," said manager Craig Counsell, "is that yeah, he has power. My thought is, he's 26 years old, he's a player with long levers, and it just takes those guys a little longer. But he's got bat-to-ball skills and the power will come. It doesn't have to be forced or rushed, it has to be organic how it happens."

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Yelich and Cain, acquired in separate transactions on Jan. 25, are the leading candidates to bat leadoff for the Brewers this season as Counsell employs a series of matchup-based lineups.

"I'm glad [Yelich] is on our team," said Sunday's starter, Chase Anderson. "You watch his swing, and it's super simple. He's a pure left-handed hitter. He led off with a homer, and the ball still hasn't landed yet."

Anderson had a productive day himself, becoming the first Brewers pitcher to work six innings while allowing three earned runs on five hits, with no walks and six strikeouts. He allowed three hits and no runs over his final four innings of work, with five of his six strikeouts.

Video: LAD@MIL: Anderson gets Kemp to go down swinging

"I still had pitches left to go. I threw 11 pitches in the bullpen to get to 90 pitches," Anderson said. "That's always encouraging after getting through the first two innings a little rough."

Anderson will log his final Spring Training outing in a Minor League game before he starts for the Brewers on Opening Day in San Diego on March 29.

Adam McCalvy has covered the Brewers for MLB.com since 2001. Follow him on Twitter @AdamMcCalvy and like him on Facebook.

Milwaukee Brewers, Chase Anderson, Christian Yelich