Hiura’s tiebreaking HR in 7th lifts Brewers over Reds 5-4

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CINCINNATI (AP) — Keston Hiura hit a tiebreaking home run off Ross Detwiler in the seventh inning, and the Milwaukee Brewers beat the Cincinnati Reds 5-4 in a battle of long balls for their third win in 13 games.

Hunter Renfroe’s three-run homer in the fourth and Willy Adames’ solo shot in the fifth built a 4-0 lead against Hunter Greene on a night every run scored on a homer.

Albert Almora Jr., Brandon Drury and Tommy Pham homered for the Reds to tie the score 4-4. That ran Milwaukee starter Eric Lauer from the game after 6.1 innings. Lauer did not allow a run until the fifth inning and allowed only six hits total. He struck out five batters.

Down to the final out in the seventh, Hiura came to the plate with nobody on base. He swung at the first pitch of the at-bat, sending a ball 412 feet to the seats in right-center field. Hiura’s blast had an exit velocity of 110.1 mph, matching Renfroe’s homer for the hardest-hit ball during the game.

With Josh Hader missing time while on paternity leave, Milwaukee had to get creative with relief pitching. Miguel Sanchez took over for Lauer, finishing the seventh with no hits and a strikeout. Devin Williams struck out a pair of Reds in the eighth inning, and Brad Boxberger closed things out in the ninth to earn the save.

The win moved the Brewers (36-30) within striking distance of the St. Louis Cardinals (37-29) for the lead in the NL Central. The Cards have lost their last two games.

Milwaukee and Cincinnati square off again Saturday at Great American Ball Park at 3:10 p.m. CT. Jason Alexander (0-0, 2.16) will make his fourth career start against right-hander Graham Ashcraft (3-0, 2.22). Ashcraft has never pitched against the Brewers.