Where: Miller Park, Milwaukee
“He had a monster game for us,” Milwaukee manager Craig Counsel said. “He’s capable of those big things when he gets going.”
Over his last 15 games, Broxton is hitting .383 (18-for-47) with five doubles, two triples, two home runs and seven RBIs. Compare that to his first 14 games, when he went 5-for-42 with a .196 on-base percentage, and the turnaround is hard to figure out.
“It’s just always been a process from the start of the season to now,” Broxton said. “Just finding your contact point, finding your base, finding your foundation in your swing and gradually, day by day, it’s gotten better. It’s just really starting to get consistent now. Hitting’s becoming easier _ I’m not saying it’s easy _ but it’s definitely becoming easier than what it was. Just trying to keep everything simple, get a good base and just try to square it up.”
Broxton started early Tuesday, hitting one of Milwaukee’s two first-inning home runs as the Brewers erased a 1-0 deficit with five runs off right-hander Drew Pomeranz (3-2).
Jonathan Villar led off with a walk and scored when Eric Thames followed with his 13th home run of the season. Ryan Braun doubled and then scored on a Travis Shaw base hit.
Broxton made Pomeranz pay with this third homer of the season.
Still, the outburst wasn’t enough for Milwaukee starter Wily Peralta who gave up four runs on five hits and three walks with four strikeouts but couldn’t get out of the fifth inning.
Peralta especially struggled against Mookie Betts. Betts hit a leadoff home run and had three of his four hits off Peralta.
Peralta worked out of a first-inning jam and coasted through his next three frames but gave up three straight one-out hits in the fifth, including back-to-back RBI doubles to Betts and Dustin Pedroia, resulting in an early hook.
“I don’t think he was quite in rhythm, and Betts got him right away, then a couple of walks,” Counsell said. “But I thought he did a really nice job the rest of that first inning getting through that. Then he put up some zeroes. Obviously, Betts was tough on him tonight. … In the end, going through the order again with Betts and Pedroia, I just thought it was a big spot in the game. We had to stop it there after we build a big lead.”
Pomeranz didn’t fare much better, lasting four innings while allowing six runs on seven hits and a pair of walks with two strikeouts.
“I just wasn’t making pitches,” said Pomeranz, who has yet to work past six innings this season. “I wasn’t locating the ball like I would have liked to. I left some balls over the middle of the plate and they hit them. It is about as simple as that.”
Broxton struck again in the seventh, driving in two more with a triple to right to make it an 11-5 game but the Red Sox got those runs back in the eighth when Betts capped off a four-hit, four-RBI night with a two-run double.
“Tonight was a prime example of going back and forth,” Betts said. “We had some chances to win and they created some momentum themselves and scored some runs. Then we’d get it back and it would go back and forth. Unfortunately, they were able to win it.”
NOTES: The Brewers are batting .326 (45-138) with 33 runs, 15 doubles, a triple, nine homers, 33 RBIs and 18 walks in the first inning this season. … LF Ryan Braun returned to Milwaukee’s starting lineup Tuesday after missing the last week with soreness in his right arm and shoulder. … Boston LHP David Price threw a 60-pitch simulated game Tuesday in Milwaukee as he works his way back from an elbow strain suffered in spring training and could go out on a minor league rehab assignment soon, manager John Farrell said. … Brewers 1B Eric Thames had five HRs in 138 AB against left-handed pitching entering 2017 (.210 BA). He now has five homers in 26 at-bats vs. southpaws this season (.385 BA). … The Red Sox were making their first appearance in Milwaukee since the 2003 season.