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Yelich steps up with another 1st-inning HR

Brewers outfielder is more than halfway to his career high of 21 homers
MLB.com @AdamMcCalvy

MILWAUKEE -- With Lorenzo Cain and Travis Shaw sidelined by injuries, the Brewers need offense. Christian Yelich provided another early jolt of it on Tuesday.

Making his first Brewers start in the three-hole, Yelich smacked his second first-inning home run in as many games for an early lead in their 5-1 win over the Royals at Miller Park. Yelich's two-run shot off Royals right-hander Jakob Junis came two days after he connected for a solo home run off Luke Weaver in the first inning of Sunday's loss to the Cardinals.

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MILWAUKEE -- With Lorenzo Cain and Travis Shaw sidelined by injuries, the Brewers need offense. Christian Yelich provided another early jolt of it on Tuesday.

Making his first Brewers start in the three-hole, Yelich smacked his second first-inning home run in as many games for an early lead in their 5-1 win over the Royals at Miller Park. Yelich's two-run shot off Royals right-hander Jakob Junis came two days after he connected for a solo home run off Luke Weaver in the first inning of Sunday's loss to the Cardinals.

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"Both balls are no-doubters, up into the stands there," Brewers manager Craig Counsell said. "He's still growing into [his power], but it's fun to see what he's capable of."

A Yelich hot streak would be most welcome right now for the Brewers, who placed Cain on the 10-day disabled list Tuesday with a left groin strain. Milwaukee also plans to be without Shaw for both games against the Royals because of a sore right wrist. It would also be well-timed for Yelich, who was in an 8-for-44 (.185) funk before connecting against Weaver on Sunday afternoon.

Tuesday's homer against the Royals gave Yelich 11 this season, pushing him more than halfway to his career high of 21 for the Marlins in 2016.

"Obviously, I haven't been feeling great up there the last week or two, but that's part of baseball, just grinding and making things happen," Yelich said.

One way to make things happen: Try something different. On Tuesday, that meant swinging away when Junis left a sinker up in the zone in a 3-0 count.

"It's probably the second or third time I've swung 3-0 in my entire career, and for some reason, I decided to do it tonight," Yelich said. "Why not? It ended up working out. Shows you how funny the game of baseball is sometimes." 

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

Milwaukee Brewers, Christian Yelich