Kelly comes through, but Braves lose to Brewers 3-2 in 13th

ATLANTA (AP) — Casey Kelly was looking forward to another start this weekend.

Instead, he had to come on Wednesday in relief.

Boy, did he ever come through for the Braves, though it still wasn't enough to push Atlanta to a rare home win.

Called on after the Braves went through their entire bullpen, Kelly worked four innings but surrendered a run-scoring single to Jonathan Villar in the 13th that gave the Milwaukee Brewers a 3-2 victory.

"Anytime you get the call, you've got to be ready," said Kelly, who threw 77 pitches just three days after an 85-pitch outing. "I'm up here to pitch and get people out."

The Braves dropped to 2-19 at Turner Field.

"The kid was unbelievable," Braves interim manager Brian Snitker said. "It's a shame we couldn't get him the win."

Kelly (0-2) had been scheduled to start against Miami on Saturday. But he was sent to the bullpen in the seventh as the Braves went through one reliever after another in a desperate bid to win before extra innings.

"We were just trying to win this thing in nine," Snitker said. "Obviously, it didn't work out."

Kelly got out of a bases-loaded jam in the 12th, striking out Chris Carter, but he couldn't escape when the Brewers filled the bases again in the 13th with no outs. Martin Maldonado grounded into a force at home to provide the Braves with a brief reprieve, but Villar came through on an 0-2 pitch.

"It was a long game and runs were tough for both teams," Milwaukee manager Craig Counsell said. "We got that run across, finally."

Michael Blazek (3-1) picked up the win for the second night in a row. Carlos Torres earned his first save since 2014 and only the third of his career.

Atlanta's Gordon Beckham hit the first pinch-hit homer of his career — a two-run shot over the center-field wall that erased Milwaukee's 1-0 lead in the sixth.

But Milwaukee made it 2-2 in the eighth. With one out, Jonathan Lucroy singled off Bud Norris, and Carter followed with a double down the right-field line that sent Lucroy to third. With the infield back, Kirk Niewenhuis grounded out to second to bring home the tying run.

The Brewers pushed across their first run in the fifth without a hit off Atlanta starter Mike Foltynewicz. Keon Broxton walked, moved to second on Junior Guerra's sacrifice, took third on a wild pitch and trotted home on Villar's sacrifice fly to deep right-center.

Guerra went five scoreless innings, working around four hits and four walks. Foltynewicz lasted 5 2/3, giving up four hits and a run.

The announced crowd of 12,869 was the smallest of the season at Turner Field. There appeared to be less than 1,000 in the stands by the end of the 4-hour, 51-minute marathon.


The Braves came out before batting practice to work on their fielding for about 45 minutes, something you normally don't see after spring training.

Snitker said he's always liked for his teams to get in some extra defensive work early in the season before the heat of summer really kicks in. Also, he was surely mindful that Atlanta has been one of baseball's worst fielding teams, with 33 errors in their first 44 games.

The extra work paid off. The Braves threw out a runner at third, and another at the plate.


Broxton picked up his first big-league hit in the 13th on an attempted sacrifice bunt.

Kelly made a diving attempt at the pop-up, but the ball came out of his glove as he slid along the grass on his stomach.'

Broxton, a native of Lakeland, Florida, beamed at first base and acknowledged family and friends cheering behind the Milwaukee dugout.


Milwaukee right-handers Cory Knebel and Matt Garza threw bullpen sessions before the game. Knebel has yet to pitch this season because of a left oblique injury, while Garza is on the 60-day disabled list with an ailing right lat muscle.

"They both did good," Counsell said. "They threw all their pitches, so the next step is to face hitters on Saturday."


Brewers: RHP Wily Peralta (2-5, 6.99) goes in the series finale Thursday. He is 1-1 with a 1.23 ERA in four career starts against Atlanta, which a far cry from his performance this season. Opponents are hitting .363 against him.

Braves: RHP Matt Wisler (2-3, 2.93) looks to add to his impressive showing in May, having allowed only six earned runs in 30 innings this month. He won in his only career appearance against the Brewers, a 5-3 triumph last July.


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