Final

Series: Game 1 of 3

Milwaukee leads 1-0 (as of 7/5)

Game 1: Monday, July 5
Chi Cubs0Final
Milwaukee1
Game 2: Tuesday, July 6
Chi Cubs2Final
Milwaukee4
Game 3: Wednesday, July 7
Chi Cubs0Final
Milwaukee4

Cubs 0

(46-36, 21-20 away)

Brewers 1

(42-38, 22-17 home)

    2:05 PM ET, July 5, 2004

    Miller Park, Milwaukee, Wisconsin 

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    CHC 000000000 0 6 0
    MIL 10000000 - 1 3 0

    W: B. Sheets (8-5)

    L: M. Clement (7-7)

    S: D. Kolb (25)

    Counsell provides only offense for Brewers

    MILWAUKEE (AP) -- Light-hitting Craig Counsell provided the only offense on a topsy-turvy Monday in which the Milwaukee Brewers were thrilled to quiet a big, boisterous home crowd behind their All-Star pitching tandem of Ben Sheets and Dan Kolb.

    Counsell's rare homer helped Sheets outduel Matt Clement in a 1-0 victory over Chicago before a pro-Cubs crowd of 45,016, the second-largest in Miller Park history.

    "It was a great atmosphere. Any time you fill the stadium it's going to be fun," Counsell said.

    He said it was hard at times to tell where he was. In the eighth, the crowd got loud when Sammy Sosa came up and singled. The roar was even louder when Luis Vizcaino struck out the next batter, Derrek Lee, to strand two runners.

    "When Sosa came up, it felt like it was all Cubs fans in the stadium and then when Vizzie struck out Derrek Lee, it felt like it was all Brewers fans," Counsell said. "The Brewers fans let it be known that they were there, that's for sure."

    So did the Cubs fans, who turned Milwaukee into Wrigley Field North.

    Sheets struck out 12 in seven innings and the Brewers, who struck out 17 Cubs in all, stopped a season-high four-game losing streak and also ended Chicago's four-game winning streak.

    Not only had their fans snapped up tickets, but the Cubs have owned Miller Park of late. They went 7-0 last year at Milwaukee, where they hadn't lost since Aug. 28, 2002, a span of eight games. Those extra "home" games helped them win their division.

    Clement (7-7) walked a season-high six but didn't allow any of them to score. He struck out 10 in seven innings and allowed just three hits -- only one after the first. But he failed to win for the first time since June 8.

    Sheets (8-5), who earned his second All-Star selection Sunday, gave up four hits and walked one to go with his dozen strikeouts, his most whiffs since fanning a career-best 18 on May 16 against Atlanta.

    "It was great pitching on both sides," Cubs manager Dusty Baker said. "I hate to see Matty lose because he is certainly pitching a whole lot better than his record indicates. His walks are up, but he's getting out of trouble a lot.

    "Sheets was tough today," Baker added. "He's tough all the time. He's not an All-Star for nothing."

    And neither is Kolb, who will join Sheets at the All-Star game at Houston on July 13. He got his 25th save in 26 chances with a 1-2-3 ninth.

    Counsell homered for just the second time this season, the first since April 6 at St. Louis when he sent an 0-2 slider over the wall in right-center in the first.

    "There was only one mistake and that was the whole game," Sosa said.

    Clement was angry for leaving a slider up and over the plate.

    "You can't give up an 0-2 home run in a situation where you're trying to go for a strikeout," he said. "I was trying to go down and in and left it over the plate. Unfortunately, he hit it well enough to get it out of the park."

    Baker said Clement shouldn't beat himself up over one pitch.

    "Very rarely do you see a solo home run last the rest of the game," Baker said.

    In the ninth, a foul ball off Jose Macias' bat whistled past Moises Alou in the on-deck circle and struck Baker in his right ribcage. Wrapped in ice afterward, Baker said he was OK.

    "Better me than Mo," he said.

    Game notes


    This was the first game of the year between the NL Central rivals, who face each other 16 more times in the next 50 days. ... Brewers 2B Junior Spivey had an MRI exam on his injured left shoulder, and the team will get the results Tuesday. ... Brewers LF Geoff Jenkins stole second base in the first, his first swipe since 2002. ... Even with Jenkins mired in a season-long batting slump, Baker said he had earned his respect, a feeling that's mutual. "One time I told him, `You have a heck of a swing,' and he said, `You taught it to me," Baker recalled. "He had seen me at a camp in Sacramento when he was young." ... Cubs batters set their season high for strikeouts. ... The only bigger crowd in Miller Park history was the 46,218 who watched these teams play last Sept. 6.

    Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press

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