Last strikes: Diamondbacks 2, Brewers 1

PHOENIX – Fourteen last strikes from the Milwaukee Brewers’ 2-1 loss to the Arizona Diamondbacks on Tuesday night at Chase Field.

1. The Brewers struck first in the fourth inning on a Travis Shaw RBI-double to right field over the outstretched glove of Arizona’s Steven Souza Jr. Christian Yelich opened the inning with a double to the wall in left-center field just past the dive of Chris Owings.

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2. The Diamondbacks struck back in the bottom of the frame after Daniel Descalso drew a leadoff walk and later came around to score when Souza Jr. grounded into a double play to push the run across. That was the only damage that starter Jhoulys Chacin would warrant, but it wasn’t the last time a leadoff walk came back to bite the Brewers.

3. Chacin was excellent for Milwaukee as he pitched seven innings, allowing one run on a pair of hits while striking out seven.

4. “He pitched outstanding,” manager Craig Counsell said of Chacin’s outing. “He pitched beautifully, through seven innings strong, really had the ability to probably keep going. But it was an outstanding performance.”

5. After a bit of a tough start to the season, he’s been everything a team could ask for and more from a back of the rotation starter. This is now three starts in a row, and six of his last seven in which Chacin has allowed two runs or less.

6. “I felt pretty good. I felt that I was making pitches from the first inning,” Chacin said after the loss. “My slider was really good today. I think the key today was my changeup. I threw a lot of changeups today and it was working against the lefties that they had.”

7. It’s not fair to ask the bullpen to be perfect on every single night. That’s something that just isn’t going to happen, and they were not perfect on Tuesday as Arizona was able to take a 2-1 lead in the bottom of the eighth.

8. Taylor Williams entered the game in the eighth replacing Chacin. He promptly allowed a leadoff walk to catcher Jeff Mathis. Mathis was then replaced by pinch-runner Jarrod Dyson and advanced to second base on a sacrifice bunt by pinch-hitter John Ryan Murphy.

9. Williams was pulled in favor of Boone Logan after the sacrifice bunt. Logan got David Peralta to ground out for the second out of the inning before intentionally walking Chris Owings. Logan then allowed an RBI-single to Descalso to give Arizona the lead.

10. With the Brewers having a seemingly plethora of terrific bullpen arms, it did seem curious that Williams was the one called upon in that spot. It was later revealed that Jeremy Jeffress was unavailable to pitch due to a stiff neck.

11. “It was Taylor for two hitters there and then we were going to go to a lefty,” manager Craig Counsell said after the game. “[Jeffress] was down, he’s had a stiff neck for the past couple days. He’s doing better but we didn’t want to use him tonight.

12. “It’s the walk that hurts you there. You think, bottom of the lineup, you’ve got to throw strikes to those guys and it’s the walk that ends up hurting you.”

13. That lead stood up as the Brewers were unable to get anything going against Diamondbacks closer Brad Boxberger in the ninth inning. Shaw reached on an error by Murphy behind the dish with one out, but Domingo Santana lined out to right and Jonathan Villar struck out looking to things.

14. The Brewers and Diamondbacks play the rubber match of this three-game set on Wednesday afternoon at 2:40 p.m. CT. Brandon Woodruff (1-0, 8.03 ERA) will start for the Brewers and Matt Koch (2-1, 2.43) will be on the hill for Arizona. Talk to you then.

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