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Little ball propels Brewers

Jonathan Lucroy lays down a safety squeeze in the sixth, bringing in Jerry Hairston to break a tie at 4.

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Jonathan Lucroy lays down a safety squeeze in the sixth, bringing in Jerry Hairston to break a tie at 4.

MILWAUKEE — The biggest momentum swing for the Brewers involved no swing at all.

Jonathan Lucroy — "Mr. Squeeze" to his teammates — drove in the go-ahead run with a bunt and Milwaukee broke away from the Diamondbacks 9-4 Sunday to take a 2-0 lead in their NL Division Series.

"It's a free RBI if you execute and I really work hard to get that down," Lucroy said. "A safety squeeze, all you've got to do is get it down to the right area."

Ryan Braun hit a two-run homer and fellow slugger Prince Fielder added an RBI single for Milwaukee. But the brawny Brewers excel in other ways, especially Lucroy.

"The little things matter," said Jerry Hairston, who scored on Lucroy's bunt. "When you have guys like Braunie and Prince with the big power, the little things add up."

The Brewers now hold a 2-0 lead in a postseason series for the first time in franchise history and will go for the sweep in Arizona on Tuesday.

Lucroy keyed a five-run sixth inning, delivering right after Diamondbacks reliever Brad Ziegler became angry about a balk call on a pickoff attempt to second. That's when rookie Milwaukee manager Ron Roenicke put on a play; he'd already seen Lucroy successfully bunt a few times this season.

"Good teams always take advantage of the other team's mistakes," Braun said. "There's no doubt coming into that inning, they had the momentum."

With the score tied at 4 and runners at the corners with one out, Hairston took a couple of half-steps and sprinted home as Lucroy bunted toward first. Ziegler's awkward flip went wide of catcher Miguel Montero for an error and the Diamondbacks imploded from there, with Milwaukee taking a 9-4 lead.

"It was crazy," Montero said. "I didn't even get a chance to second-guess myself. It was like, 'Okay, here we go — boom, boom, boom, boom.' I'm like, 'What's going on over here?' "

Brewers starter Zack Greinke struggled in his first postseason appearance, giving up three homers. He was 11-0 at Miller Park, helping the Brewers win a majors-best 57 games at home.

Brewers 9

D'backs 4

Little ball propels Brewers 10/02/11 [Last modified: Monday, October 3, 2011 2:35pm]
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