ST. LOUIS (AP) – Another injury was too much for the depleted Milwaukee Brewers.
Matt Garza was removed with a bruised right thumb in the fourth inning of a 9-3 loss to the St. Louis Cardinals on Wednesday. That put more stress on a bullpen that pitched 16 innings in the three-game series, the first two extra-inning wins.
“We were hoping he’d go deep,” manager Ron Roenicke said. “It hurt, him not going deep.”
The Brewers considered roster moves after the game. Roenicke said decisions probably would be made after Milwaukee arrived in Cincinnati for a four-game series.
Garza (1-3) was injured when he got jammed on his at-bat in the the fourth with Milwaukee trailing 4-3. He expects to be ready for his next turn in the rotation.
“I’m going to make sure I’m OK by then,” he said. “I’m not here to skip a start.”
He wasn’t happy with losing to the Cardinals for the second time this year. The right-hander was charged with five runs.
On April 14, he allowed four runs in seven innings of a 4-0 loss at home to St. Louis. In three of his first five starts, he worked seven or more innings.
“It’s been a consistent battle for me so far this year,” Garza said. “I don’t know if it’s me fighting myself or me trying to do too much or what it is, but it needs to stop. I’m going to carry my weight on this team and do my part. Right now, I’m not.”
Rookie Wei-Chung Wang, selected from Pittsburgh in the winter meeting draft, gave up four runs in three innings and has allowed 10 runs and 13 hits in six innings.
Backup catcher Martin Maldonado pitched the eighth for the Brewers, the 13th relief outing of the series.
“We can get back strong again in our bullpen if we have a couple good days,” Roenicke said.
Allen Craig homered on a four-hit day that included three RBIs, and Matt Adams hit a three-run homer for the Cardinals.
Jon Jay had three hits and a walk his first four trips to the plate. The Cardinals avoided a three-game sweep by the team with the best record in the major leagues.
Shelby Miller (3-2) worked around homers to Mark Reynolds and Carlos Gomez, allowing three runs and six hits in six-plus innings.
Milwaukee is 20-8, a franchise record for wins through the season’s first full first month.
Ryan Braun (oblique) and Jean Segura (cut on head) didn’t start during the series, and Aramis Ramirez (elbow) was out the last two games for Milwaukee, which batted light-swinging Scooter Gennett third the last two games. Segura and Ramirez are expected to return Thursday for a four-game series at Cincinnati, though Braun remains day to day.
Roenicke said Braun will not start Thursday and added, “In a couple days, he needs to be ready to go.”
Segura played the eighth at shortstop and doubled in the ninth.
It was 50 degrees at game time. The sun popped out of the clouds a few times, each time getting a big cheer.
Matt Holliday’s RBI single put the Cardinals in front in the first, Reynolds hit a two-run shot in the second and Adams answered in the third with his second of the season, estimated at 439 feet, for a 4-3 lead.
Craig doubled for the second straight at-bat in the fourth, driving in two runs off Wei-Chung Wang, and RBI doubles by Miller and Jay made it 8-3 in the fifth.
The four-hit game matched Craig’s career best. He had seven hits in the series, including two homers, lifting his average to .220.
Miller allowed three runs and five hits the first three innings, but no runs on one hit and three walks the rest of his outing. He’s given up seven homers.
NOTES: The Cardinals are skipping the fifth spot in the rotation, taking advantage of a day off Thursday and planning to start Adam Wainwright against the Cubs’ Travis Wood on Friday in Chicago. Marco Estrada (2-1, 2.87) is to pitch for the Brewers on Thursday, opposing Homer Bailey (1-2, 6.15). … The Cardinals said Jim Edmonds, Willie McGee, Mike Shannon and Marty Marion will be inducted into the team’s Hall of Fame in August. … Jay is 8 for 13 against Garza. … Gennett is a .367 hitter (22 for 60) against the Cardinals.
(Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)