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Bruce has three-run homer, lifts Reds over Brewers

Associated Press Modified: May 8, 2012 at 12:03 am •  Published: May 7, 2012
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MILWAUKEE (AP) — Jay Bruce and the Cincinnati Reds needed just 11 pitches to spoil Marco Estrada strong first three innings.

Bruce hit a three-run home run to cap a five-run fourth, leading the Reds to a 6-1 victory over the Brewers on Monday night.

Estrada (0-2) used 43 pitches to set the Reds down in order each of the first three innings, but gave up five runs in just 11 pitches to open the fourth.

"It's like a feeding frenzy," Cincinnati manager Dusty Baker said of his team's quick outburst.

Bronson Arroyo (2-1) pitched solidly into the seventh inning, only giving up a homer to Ryan Braun in the first — the NL MVP's ninth. The right-hander was tough the rest of the way, giving up six hits and a walk with nine strikeouts in 6 2-3 innings.

Bruce's ninth home run extended his hitting streak to 10 games and gave the Reds a comfortable lead against Estrada.

"The first time around he obviously cruised," said Bruce, who is batting .405 (15 for 37) with six home runs and 12 RBIs during the streak. "We got him in the zone a little better the next time around and put some good swings on some balls. We can hit as a team. We're a good hitting team."

Arroyo exited with two on and two outs in the seventh, but reliever Logan Ondrusek got Norichika Aoki to fly out to short right field to end the inning.

Cincinnati has won six of eight and is 3-1 in a stretch where it will play 13 of 16 on the road.

Milwaukee has lost five of six, scoring only 12 runs in that span. Aoki went 0 for 4 and the Brewers leadoff hitters are batting .162 (18 for 111) this year.

The Brewers played hours after learning that shortstop Alex Gonzalez tore his anterior cruciate ligament in his right knee on Saturday and will miss the rest of the season. Milwaukee's first baseman Mat Gamel (torn ACL in right knee) and fifth starter Chris Narveson (torn left rotator cuff) are also out with season-ending injuries.

"It was a different lineup than what you expect against these guys, with the amount of guys they had hurt," Arroyo said. "I didn't have a lot of reps against four or five of those guys, so I was feeling my way through the game."

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