Final

Series: Game 2 of 4

Series tied 1-1 (as of 8/18)

Game 1: Thursday, August 17
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Milwaukee3
Game 2: Friday, August 18
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Game 3: Saturday, August 19
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Game 4: Sunday, August 20
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Astros 2

(58-64, 24-33 away)

Brewers 3

(58-64, 35-25 home)

8:05 PM ET, August 18, 2006

Miller Park, Milwaukee, Wisconsin 

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W: F. Cordero (8-4)

L: B. Lidge (0-4)

Prince of a guy: Fielder hit leads Brewers past Astros

MILWAUKEE (AP) -- Prince Fielder resisted the temptation to go for the home run and still came through with the decisive hit.

The rookie singled home the winning run in the ninth inning to lift the Milwaukee Brewers over the Houston Astros 3-2 Friday night.

"It's natural to want to try to hit a home run or try to do too much to get the job done," said Fielder, who was 0-for-3 with a walk before getting the big hit. "I was just trying to relax up there and trying to just let my natural ability take it over."

Brad Lidge (0-4) hit Mike Rivera with a pitch to start the Brewers' ninth. Jeff Cirillo then bunted right back to Lidge, but the ball scooted under the reliever's glove. Cirillo reached on the fielding error and Rivera took second. Corey Hart's fielder's choice forced Rivera at third and Cirillo moved up.

Lidge struck out Tony Graffanino and manager Phil Garner brought in Dan Wheeler to face Fielder, who hit the first pitch into right to score Cirillo.

"We're in a bind there," Garner said of his decision to go with Wheeler and not stay with Lidge. "He's had trouble with left-handers. I felt the best shot was to go with Wheeler and not give Prince too good of a pitch to hit."

Wheeler said the idea was to see if Fielder would chase a bad pitch.

"They told me it was low," Wheeler said of the location of the ball Fielder hit. "When it comes down to it, it wasn't low enough."

Francisco Cordero (1-0) got pinch-hitter Chris Burke to ground into an inning-ending double play in the ninth to get his first National League win. Cordero was acquired from Texas along with outfielder Kevin Mench on July 28 in the deal that sent Carlos Lee and Nelson Cruz to the Rangers.

Milwaukee's Brian Shouse walked Lance Berkman and Luke Scott in the ninth then struck out Aubrey Huff before Cordero entered.

"That's why they brought me here," Cordero said. "I come to the park every day ready to pitch."

Milwaukee starter Tomo Ohka gave up two runs in the second but settled down after that, holding the Astros to one hit before being lifted for pinch-hitter Geoff Jenkins with one out in the seventh.

Ohka, who missed 2½ months with a torn rotator cuff and was reinstated from the DL on July 18, allowed one earned run and four hits with a walk to lower his ERA from 5.45 to 4.73.

Gabe Gross hit an RBI single in the first off Astros starter Brandon Backe and Bill Hall tied it at 2 with his 27th homer of the season in the fourth inning for Milwaukee.

Backe, who missed 88 games with a right elbow sprain, made his sixth start since returning from the DL on July 22. He allowed two runs and four hits in 6 1-3 innings.

"I felt like I did my job," Backe said. "We shouldn't have lost this game. I definitely feel like our offense, the guys in the lineup, are better than theirs, but you can't put it all on them. You've got to give Ohka credit. He obviously did his job."

The Astros pushed across two runs in the second. Scott doubled and scored on Huff's double. With two outs and Huff at third, Ohka fielded Backe's grounder back to the mound. Ohka ignored his catcher Rivera who was pointing to first and instead chased Huff back toward third. His throw sailed past third baseman David Bell, who was racing back to the bag, and allowed Huff to score.

"Tomo was good," Brewers manager Ned Yost said. "Back-to-back doubles and then the one misplay. Tomo was real sharp tonight."

Game Notes
After the game, the Brewers placed RHP Matt Wise on the 15-day disabled list with ulnar neuritis in the right elbow, retroactive to Aug. 15 and called up OF Laynce Nix from Triple-A Nashville. ... Also, after the game, Garner said RHP Dave Borkowski (1-1) in 29 appearances would start Saturday's game against the Brewers. RHP Roy Oswalt has a bruise on his right wrist suffered in the game against the Cubs on Aug. 14... Astros CF Willy Taveras extended his hitting streak to 21 games with a single in the eighth. ... The Miller Park stadium district said on Friday the small piece of insulation that fell from the closed roof during Thursday night's game was a remnant from the ballpark's construction. The lightweight piece landed harmlessly between the pitcher's mound and second base during the Astros' fifth inning.

Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press

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