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Miley looks for answers after latest rough start

Left-hander gives up seven runs over 1 2/3 innings vs. the Brewers
Special to MLB.com

MILWAUKEE -- It is easy for Wade Miley to pinpoint a lack of command as the cause of his recent struggles. The challenging part for the veteran left-hander is figuring out to how to go about fixing the issue.

Miley's frustrating month continued Monday in an 8-1 loss to the Brewers, as he was hit for seven runs on seven hits over just 1 2/3 innings.

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MILWAUKEE -- It is easy for Wade Miley to pinpoint a lack of command as the cause of his recent struggles. The challenging part for the veteran left-hander is figuring out to how to go about fixing the issue.

Miley's frustrating month continued Monday in an 8-1 loss to the Brewers, as he was hit for seven runs on seven hits over just 1 2/3 innings.

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"There's been zero command," Miley said. "Any time you put yourself in those situations, battling back, behind in the count all the time, it is pretty tough to pitch up here like that.

"I didn't give us a chance. I pretty much blew that one early on. First and second inning, to let them get out to a big lead like that just set the tempo for the other team. It can't happen. It can't continue to happen. Some adjustments have to be made."

After Miley retired Jonathan Villar to start the bottom of the first, the next five Brewers reached base via a single or a walk.

Miley needed 44 pitches to get through the opening inning, as Milwaukee batted around before starting pitcher Brent Suter struck out to end the frame.

"The first inning was single, walk, single, walk, single, [fielder's choice]," Brewers manager Craig Counsell said. "That shows me that's a bunch of guys having good at-bats in a row for sure. We made him work. We were disciplined, we didn't chase. He was off a bit in the first inning and we kept making him work."

The second inning followed a similar script, as Miley took care of Villar for the first out before finding trouble again. Domingo Santana and Ryan Braun hit consecutive singles and Travis Shaw was hit by a pitch to load the bases.

Jesus Aguilar connected for a sacrifice fly before Manny Pina delivered the final blow to Miley's day, a two-out, two-run double to left-center field to give the Brewers a 7-0 lead.

Video: BAL@MIL: Pina drills a two-run double to center field

"We've had some challenges with our starting pitching -- we've had some good outings, too, lately -- I don't want to say, 'Here we go again,' but it is just kind of 'OK, we have to fight our way through this,'" Showalter said. "There's some games we can come back from if we can stay engaged and connected to the games. But when you've had the challenges we've had, there's a certain mental challenge that's hard to overcome nightly."

Miley's ERA sat at 2.82 after allowing just one earned run over seven innings against Boston on June 1. It has been a tough road over his six starts since, as his ERA has risen to 5.20, after allowing 29 runs over his last 20 1/3 innings.

"You just have to keep grinding," Miley said. "You have to just keep working in the bullpen and just look for something to click. When it clicks, hopefully you can get headed in the right direction. I feel really good in my sides and in between, but it is just not translating, for whatever reason."

Andrew Gruman is a contributor to MLB.com based in Milwaukee.

Baltimore Orioles, Wade Miley