By TOM KERTSCHER
MILWAUKEE (AP) — Kerry Carpenter hit a three-run home run and four Detroit Tigers pitchers held the Milwaukee Brewers in check, as Detroit beat Milwaukee 4-3 on Tuesday night.
Milwaukee started the eighth inning with a leadoff double, but then Willy Adames, Rowdy Tellez and William Contreras struck out.
It was the first time this season that the Brewers have lost three straight, including a loss to the Red Sox on Sunday.
Before beating the Brewers 4-2 on Monday, the Tigers had lost four straight, scoring a total of five runs.
Detroit scored all its runs in the second inning. Three batters fouled off a total of nine pitches from left-handed starter Eric Lauer (3-2) before the homer by Carpenter, who had been 0-for-12.
“I’m confident against lefties, too, so I was ready for it,” Carpenter said. He was the only left-handed batter in the Tigers lineup.
Detroit added the decisive run with two outs. Eric Haase kept the inning alive with a ground ball single that third baseman Owen Miller put a glove on but couldn’t scoop. That allowed Spencer Torkelson to bat. He singled in Javier Báez, who had doubled.
Detroit entered Tuesday with the fewest runs and the lowest batting average in the majors.
It was the shortest of Lauer’s five starts this season. He threw 85 pitches over three innings. Lauer had won his previous two starts, allowing three runs in 13 2/3 innings.
Lauer said a fingernail on his throwing hand partially split in the second inning. “I don’t think it was affecting me,” he said.
Detroit starter Spencer Turnbull gave up two runs in four innings.
Left-hander Tyler Alexander replaced Turnbull. He was chased when Tellez led off the sixth inning with his eighth home run, which made the game 4-3.
In the eighth, Luke Voit hit the leadoff double, off Mason Englert (1-1). But Englert struck out Adames and Tellez before being lifted for Jason Foley. Foley struck out Contreras, then retired Milwaukee in order in the ninth to earn his second save.
“The guys came in and pitched their butts off,” Turnbull said of the relievers.
Three Milwaukee relievers pitched scoreless innings Elvis Peguero (three), Joel Payamps (two) and Peter Strzelecki (one).
“The bullpen gave us a chance, but we just weren’t able to get a run,” Milwaukee manager Craig Counsell said.
Matt Vierling had three singles for Detroit. Torkelson, Baez and Miguel Cabrera each had two hits.
HITTING AND STRIKING OUT
Tigers 1B/DH Cabrera, who’s in his 21st and final season, “is going to go down as one of the purest right-handed hitters to ever play baseball,” Counsell said. In the third inning, Cabrera hit a 90 mph Lauer fastball for a 384-foot single off the wall in right-centerfield. In the sixth, the 40-year-old legged out an infield single.
Tigers OF Riley Greene entered Tuesday leading AL hitters in strikeouts (33). “He likes to swing, he’s missing some balls in the zone that he normally hits,” manager A.J. Finch said. “He’s a young kid, though. He’s got to ride this wave of not being perfect and not being at his best all the time.” Greene entered the game in the eighth inning and grounded out in the ninth.
Brewers: OF Garrett Mitchell, whose season is in jeopardy, will have surgery (left shoulder) next week. … OF Tyrone Taylor (right elbow sprain) began a rehab assignment with Triple-A Nashville. … OF prospect Sal Frelick underwent surgery (left thumb). He’s expected to return in six to eight weeks. He had been playing for Triple-A Nashville.
The three-game series ends Wednesday afternoon. Tigers RHP Michael Lorenzen (0-0, 6.00 ERA) faces Brewers RHP Freddy Peralta (2-2, 3.97 ERA).