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Doubles continue to be trouble for Brewers

After Fiers' rough 2nd, Milwaukee pitchers have allowed 20 doubles in four games

MILWAUKEE -- The Brewers continue to give up extra-base hits, particularly doubles, at an alarming rate.

Pedro Alvarez and Starling Marte each homered, and the Pirates pounded four doubles in the first three innings in a 6-2 Brewers loss Friday night. The Brewers now have given up 20 doubles in four games.

"Left some pitches up," manager Ron Roenicke said of Mike Fiers' first start of the season. "Missed locations on some."

Fiers struck out the first three batters to cruise through the first inning. The second was an entirely different matter.

Neil Walker doubled, Alvarez singled, Francisco Cervelli doubled and pitcher Jeff Locke doubled for his first big league extra-base hit. By the time the damage was done, the Pirates had three runs.

"That first inning was pretty impressive, and then to come back and have them get three off you after you do that ..," Roenicke said. "But then he settled down. I know he gave up the home run to Alvarez on a bad pitch, but overall he threw the ball well. It was just that second inning."

Video: PIT@MIL: Fiers strikes out eight over five innings

Pittsburgh manager Clint Hurdle said Fiers was spot-on locating his pitches in the first inning, but not the second.

"Location on his part played part of it," Hurdle said. "We have seen him before, we've seen him have swing-and-miss stuff. There's a high overhead angle with some downhill plane that's tough to get to.

"The second inning, we were able to get on some balls early in the count that I don't think were located as well as he wanted."

The Brewers are winless after four games, matching 2011 when they lost four consecutive games to open the season before rallying for 96 wins and the National League Central crown.

Milwaukee was optimistic it had put behind it's late-season collapse when the team left Arizona last weekend.

"It's disappointing that we work that hard in spring training, and did a lot of really good things, and then we come out and do this during the season the first four games," he said. "I know it's early, but we really worked hard to get ready for opening day."

Carlos Gomez, who played second base for the first time in his professional career when Scooter Gennett was ejected in the eighth, said it was too early in the season to be overly concerned.

"I mean, it's still really early," he said. "But we know when we [left Spring Training] we were better than that. But you know, just put it in the past. Tomorrow is a new day. We have to come and play like we do."

Joe DiGiovanni is a contributor to
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