Brewers beat Nationals 4-1 behind Chacin, 3 homers
WASHINGTON — The Milwaukee Brewers left Nationals Park with another win and a new pitcher.
Jhoulys Chacin survived a rocky first and pitched effectively into the seventh inning, Travis Shaw hit a two-run homer and the Brewers beat the Nationals 4-1 on Friday night.
During the game, the teams worked out a trade that sent Gio Gonzalez from the Nationals to the Brewers for two minor leaguers. The left-handed starter, who has struggled in 2018, will be a free agent in the offseason.
“We’re excited to get him,” Brewers manager Craig Counsell said. “It’s a good pitcher that’s certainly got a lot of experience and he’s gonna help us.”
Holding a 2-0 lead, Chacin allowed the first three Nationals to reach base in the first. A fielder’s choice ground out produced one run, but Chacin retired the next two batters to end the threat.
“He squeaks out of trouble all the time and then once he settles in in the second, third, whatever, he’s on cruise control the rest of the game,” Shaw said.
Chacin (14-5) allowed a run on six hits while striking out six and walking two in 6 1/3 innings.
The Brewers also got home runs from Jesus Aguilar, his 31st, and Erik Kratz in winning their third straight game and eighth in their last 11. Milwaukee holds the second NL wild card spot.
Jeremy Jeffress pitched the ninth for his eighth save in 13 opportunities. With a hard rain falling, the Nationals loaded the bases with one out, but Jeffress struck out Bryce Harper and got Anthony Rendon on a fielder’s choice.
Trea Turner had three hits for Washington, which went 1 for 15 with runners in scoring position and left 12 runners on.
Tanner Roark (8-14) allowed four runs on six hits over six innings.
“Just a little erratic at times, not hitting my spots and they made me pay for it,” Roark said.
Roark came in 5-1 with a 1.61 ERA in his past seven starts, but the Brewers homered in each of the first three innings against him.
Shaw connected for a two-run shot with two outs in the first, Kratz hit a solo home run in the second and Aguilar connected with nobody on in the third.
“We scored early tonight and that was enough,” Counsell said.
Nationals catcher Matt Wieters was ejected in the sixth inning for arguing balls and strikes.
Brewers: Acquired OF Curtis Granderson from the Blue Jays for minor league OF Demi Orimoloye. Granderson, 37, has hit .243 with 11 home runs and 35 RBIs in 103 games this season. Milwaukee also acquired LHP Xavier Cedeno from the Chicago White Sox in exchange for OF Bryan Connell and RHP Johan Dominguez, two minor leaguers. Cedeno is 2-0 with a 2.84 ERA in 33 relief appearances this season.
Nationals: Sent RHP Ryan Madson to the Los Angeles Dodgers for RHP Andrew Istler. Madson was 5-5 with five saves and a 4.08 ERA in 69 games for Washington. Istler went 4-4 with a 2.37 ERA in 41 games (one start) between three levels of Los Angeles’ minor league system.
Nationals: LHP Sean Doolittle (left toe inflammation) threw a simulated game Friday and is slated for another one Sunday or Monday. “I was a little bit inconsistent with my execution, but I was very happy with how the foot felt,” he said. … Manager Dave Martinez said Harper is still battling a cough, but the former MVP was back in the lineup after pinch hitting on Wednesday.
Brewers: RHP Chase Anderson (9-7, 4.04) makes his second career appearance against Washington, the first being a 2014 loss while with Arizona.
Nationals: RHP Stephen Strasburg (7-7, 4.14) makes his first start against Milwaukee since 2014. He’s 0-2 with a 5.30 ERA in three games vs. the Brewers.