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Brewers use long ball to gain split with Cards

MLB.com

ST. LOUIS -- After being shut out in the first game of Tuesday's day-night doubleheader against the Cardinals, Brewers manager Craig Counsell lamented his team's lack of creating opportunities during a recent offensive funk.

Milwaukee would have plenty of opportunities in the nightcap and took advantage. Powered by three RBIs from Keon Broxton and two from Travis Shaw, the Brewers bounced back to beat St. Louis, 8-5, at Busch Stadium. The Cardinals won the first game, 6-0.

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ST. LOUIS -- After being shut out in the first game of Tuesday's day-night doubleheader against the Cardinals, Brewers manager Craig Counsell lamented his team's lack of creating opportunities during a recent offensive funk.

Milwaukee would have plenty of opportunities in the nightcap and took advantage. Powered by three RBIs from Keon Broxton and two from Travis Shaw, the Brewers bounced back to beat St. Louis, 8-5, at Busch Stadium. The Cardinals won the first game, 6-0.

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"Certainly the last couple games we've struggled a little bit," Counsell said. "To me it wasn't the biggest number we've put on the board but as good an offensive game as we've had this year for sure. The eighth inning was great at-bats up and down the lineup. It was really impressive. Hit some home runs and then we put together just a good rally with great at-bats in the eighth."

Video: MIL@STL: Broxton opens scoring with a solo smash

The Brewers, who scored a total of three runs in their three-game losing streak, tagged Cardinals pitchers for eight runs on 11 hits, with Broxton, Shaw, Hernan Perez and Manny Pina collecting two hits apiece.

"We've had a rough couple past three games, had a rough time scoring, so it's nice for us to put some runs up on the board for the pitchers and just get back to being us," Broxton said.

Counsell praised his lineup's approach in the eighth inning against hard-throwing reliever Trevor Rosenthal (1-3). Domingo Santana and Jesus Aguilar drew full-count walks. Shaw hit a 3-2 pitch for an RBI single for the go-ahead run. Perez had a 3-2 single. Pina followed with an RBI single off closer Seung Hwan Oh. Broxton added a sacrifice fly.

Video: MIL@STL: Aguilar leads off the 4th with a home run

"It was just grinding out an at-bat and working an at-bat and making the pitcher work, making Rosenthal work. He struggled with his command -- it was kind of evident -- and we laid off some stuff, which is easier said than done when a guy is throwing that hard," Counsell said.

"I give all those guys credit: Domingo, Aguilar, H.P., Travis Shaw, Manny Pina. Just outstanding at-bats."

Jared Hughes (2-1) earned the win despite allowing a seventh-inning home run to Matt Carpenter. Corey Knebel converted his ninth save with a scoreless ninth.

Video: MIL@STL: Knebel strikes out Piscotty to earn save

MOMENTS THAT MATTERED
Powering up: Trailing 2-0 after two innings, the Brewers got a run back in the third on a home run from Broxton. Then Aguilar and Shaw opened the fourth inning with back-to-back homers off Cardinals starter Marco Gonzales, the jump start of a four-run inning that got Milwaukee's lineup back on track. It was the fourth time this season the Brewers have hit back-to-back home runs. It was Gonzalez's first start in the big leagues since 2015, as he had Tommy John surgery a year ago.

"I was really confident the first couple innings, felt like my command was right there," Gonzales said. "That fourth inning (I) started getting behind the count and started elevating my pitches and as we all know that's pretty dangerous. Unfortunate to say the least, but my arm feels great and that's a big positive out of it."

Video: MIL@STL: Gonzales strikes out first batter in return

Red hot Carp: Carpenter capped his first three-hit game of the season with a solo home run in the seventh, his 12th of 2017, to tie the score at 5-5 after St. Louis had trailed by three runs. Carpenter is hitting .407 with three homers and eight RBIs during his seven-game hit streak.

"Carp probably would tell you right now he could hit anywhere in the lineup when he's feeling right, but for whatever reason, I don't think there's anyone that's going to argue with the fact that he looks really good right now," Cardinals manager Mike Matheny said. "Hopefully we can keep him there and Dex has been doing a nice job in that second spot, ready to find that good rhythm at the top of our order."

Video: MIL@STL: Carpenter singles home Garcia in the 2nd

QUOTABLE
"It's nice to get back but at the same time my mind is still elsewhere. There's more important things than baseball. A lot of things got put into perspective last week. So I'm still just thinking of her at home. It was nice to get a win and nice to contribute, but I'm still thinking about her at home." -- Shaw on his infant daughter, Ryann, who had open-heart surgery last week

"It was beautiful, honestly. I took a lot from that, really happy just to set foot in this building again and just happy to throw a baseball again. I'm very thankful, it's been a long road back, but I'm not done yet and excited for my first opportunity." -- Gonzales on getting an opportunity to start the nightcap

SOUND SMART WITH YOUR FRIENDS
Dexter Fowler is now 4-for-6 with five RBIs as a pinch-hitter this year with Tuesday's RBI single. He also has an RBI in three straight games for the second time this season and will be looking to reach his career-high of five straight games, which he reached April 21-28, 2016.

Video: MIL@STL: Fowler plates Diaz with a single to left

WHAT'S NEXT

Brewers: RHP Matt Garza returns from the disabled list (chest contusion) to make his ninth start of the season. First pitch is scheduled for 7:15 p.m. CT.

Cardinals: ln his second start of the season against the Brewers, right-hander Mike Leake will take the mound at 7:15 p.m. CT on Wednesday. Leake allowed three hits and two earned runs with six strikeouts over six innings in the 6-4 victory.

Watch every out-of-market regular-season game live on MLB.TV.

Nate Latsch is a contributor to MLB.com based in St. Louis and covered the Brewers on Tuesday.

Alaina Getzenberg is a reporter for MLB.com based in St. Louis and covered the Cardinals on Tuesday.

Milwaukee Brewers, St. Louis Cardinals