After briefly showing some life against baseball's worst pitching staff, the Milwaukee Brewers fell back into the offensive rut that led to their struggles on their recent road swing.
With Wily Peralta seeking his fifth victory, the Brewers will try to bounce back and avoid their sixth loss in eight games Wednesday in the series finale against the visiting Arizona Diamondbacks.NL-best Milwaukee (22-12) totaled 13 runs while dropping four of its last five on a seven-game trip before matching that total over the first nine innings of a three-game set with the Diamondbacks (12-24).But after pushing across five runs in the first inning Tuesday, the Brewers went scoreless while scattering four hits over the final eight in a 7-5 loss -- their first in 19 games this season when scoring at least four.It certainly hasn't helped that star slugger Ryan Braun remains on the disabled list with a strained right oblique.The Brewers, however, haven't needed much scoring when Peralta (4-1, 2.04 ERA) has taken the mound. The right-hander, who didn't reach five wins until June 21 last season, hasn't given up more than three earned runs in any of his six outings in 2014.After allowing a season-high three earned runs over seven innings in a 4-0 home loss to the Chicago Cubs on April 27, he gave up three hits with a season-best seven strikeouts over eight innings in Friday's 2-0 victory in Cincinnati.Peralta also chipped in offensively with a two-run double."He had a great fastball," manager Ron Roenicke said. "His slider was outstanding. He threw a couple of changeups, not many. And his swing ... he had a great swing and we certainly needed it."Peralta pitched well in his only career start against the Diamondbacks, surrendering one run while fanning eight over seven innings of a 5-1 road victory July 14.Miguel Montero's fifth-inning home run off him accounted for Arizona's only run in that contest. The catcher is batting .343 with two homers and eight RBIs in his last 11 road games heading into this matchup.With his sixth home run Tuesday, Paul Goldschmidt is batting .457 with three homers over an eight-game hitting streak. Aaron Hill delivered a go-ahead two-run homer in the eighth inning, leaving him 17 for 36 with four home runs and 11 RBIs in eight career games at Miller Park."He's a really good hitter," Roenicke said. "I know he kills us."Arizona starter Bronson Arroyo (2-2, 6.03) has turned things around of late, allowing two runs over 13 1/3 innings in his last two starts after going 1-2 with a 9.50 ERA in his first four.The right-hander will try to build on his best performance Friday when he gave up three hits with a season-high six strikeouts over seven innings in a 2-0 win at San Diego. That victory was part of the Diamondbacks' current 5-2 road stretch, though they still have the NL's worst record overall."It's going to be a long season no matter how you cut it because we're going to fighting uphill the whole way," Arroyo said. "Who knows where it's going to end up."Arroyo is 4-2 with a 2.54 ERA in his last nine starts in Milwaukee dating to his time with Cincinnati. Carlos Gomez (3 for 20) and Jean Segura (3 for 14) haven't fared well when facing Arroyo, though Lyle Overbay is 5 for 10 with two doubles.
Since the start of last season, Gerardo Parra's .336 batting average in at-bats ending with a fastball or a slider from a righty ranks seventh among qualified hitters. Wily Peralta is throwing those two pitches a combined 97 percent of the time this season (70 percent fastballs, 27 percent sliders).