WEAU | Eau Claire, Wisconsin | Sports

Brewers Can't Overcome Deficit

Rich Hill retired his first 15 batters and allowed one hit in seven innings, leading the Chicago Cubs to a 9-3 victory over the Milwaukee Brewers on Friday night.

Hill, who was shaky in his final exhibition stint of the spring, got all the run support he needed before he stepped on the mound. The Cubs scored six times in the first inning, capped by Mark DeRosa's two-run homer.

Hill's run at a perfect game and a shutout ended in the sixth when Corey Hart led off and hit a fastball deep into the Brewers' bullpen to cut Chicago's lead to 6-1.

The left-hander took advantage of his early lead, using his big breaking ball and a sharp fastball to stymie the Brewers. Rickie Weeks struck out twice, as did Bill Hall, who also struggled for the second straight game as the team's new center fielder.

The Cubs got on the board again in the seventh off reliever Claudio Vargas, who came in after Brewers starter Dave Bush (0-1) settled down following his miserable first inning. Cliff Floyd doubled in a run and Michael Barrett added an RBI single to make it 8-1. In the eighth, Ronny Cedeno batted for Hill and hit his first pinch-hit home run to give the Cubs a 9-1 lead.

Kevin Mench hit a two-run double with two outs in the ninth to make it 9-3.

Bush, who won nine of his 12 games last season at Miller Park, settled down after the first. He allowed just two more hits for a total of eight and finished six innings with seven strikeouts.


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