Brew­ers hold on to take Game 1 of NLCS

The Maui News - - SPORTS - By GE­NARO C. AR­MAS The As­so­ci­ated Press

MIL­WAU­KEE — The high-five at the plate from Bran­don Woodruff nearly took out Lorenzo Cain.

It’s not of­ten that a re­liever hits a home run.

Bat­ting left-handed. Off lefty Clay­ton Ker­shaw. In the play­offs.

Woodruff stunned the ace with an early home run and Mil­wau­kee’s nor­mally shut­down bullpen held on — barely — as the Brew­ers beat the sloppy Los An­ge­les Dodgers 6-5 on Fri­day in Game 1 of the Na­tional League Cham­pi­onship Series.

Hard-throw­ing Josh Hader and the Brew­ers earned their 12th straight win, one shy of the fran­chise record set to open the 1987 sea­son.

Woodruff, of all peo­ple, had the mo­men­tum-swing­ing hit.

“It’s some­thing ob­vi­ously com­ing into the day, you don’t know in your wildest dreams that’s go­ing to hap­pen,” he said.

It was the first time in post­sea­son his­tory that a pitcher home­red in a lefty vs. lefty matchup. Woodruff was un­der­stand­ably pumped as he rounded the bases.

“He was fired up when he came home. He nearly broke my arm,” Cain said.

The Dodgers scored three times in the eighth to make it 6-4, then nearly tied it in the ninth. Chris Tay­lor hit an RBI triple off Cain’s glove in deep cen­ter field with two outs be­fore Corey Knebel fanned Justin Turner to end it.

Game 2 is to­day at Miller Park, with Wade Mi­ley pitch­ing for the Brew­ers against Hyun-Jin Ryu.

The Dodgers did some dam­age against the Brew­ers’ bullpen. Mil­wau­kee used seven pitch­ers, in­clud­ing three score­less in­nings from Hader. Woodruff threw two per­fect in­nings and got the win.

“But for us to get a look at these guys out of the pen in a seven-game series, I think that’s a good thing,” man­ager Dave Roberts said.

Manny Machado home­red and drove in three runs for Los An­ge­les. The Dodgers com­mit­ted four er­rors, in­clud­ing two by catcher Yas­mani Gran­dal, who also had two passed balls.

Ker­shaw was chased be­fore he could re­tire a bat­ter in the fourth in­ning. It was the short­est start of his post­sea­son ca­reer, which has been much less stel­lar than his reg­u­lar-sea­son bril­liance. He al­lowed six hits and five runs, four earned.

“Got to do a bet­ter job of keep­ing the score close for our guys to have a chance there at the end,” Ker­shaw said.

AP photo

The Brew­ers’ Bran­don Woodruff cel­e­brates as he rounds the bases af­ter hit­ting a home run in the third in­ning Fri­day.

AP photo

Dodgers starter Clay­ton Ker­shaw walks af­ter be­ing re­moved from the game dur­ing the fourth in­ning Fri­day.

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