Early lead evaporates for Australia
Huber homers in penultimate exhibition game before Classic
By Adam McCalvy / MLB.com
March 5, 2009
Australia at the plate: In the second of Australia's three exhibition tuneups for the World Baseball Classic, Justin Huber hit a two-out, two-run home run in the first inning and the visitors tacked on two more runs in the fourth for a brief 4-0 lead. Shortstop Brad Harman hit a solo homer in the sixth to make it a one-run game before the host Brewers pulled away.Brewers at the plate: The Brewers had no hits and sent the minimum nine batters to the plate through three innings before batting around and scoring six times in the fourth. J.J. Hardy cut a 4-0 deficit in half with a two-run home run, and five batters later, Casey McGehee clubbed a two-out grand slam that just cleared the fence in left field and gave the Brewers a 6-2 lead. Mike Lamb hit a two-run double in the eighth inning. Australia on the mound: Starter Damian Moss allowed only Jason Kendall's double through the first three innings before hitting major trouble in the fourth, allowing two walks and five hits, including a pair of home runs. Liam Hendricks worked in relief and did not allow an earned run in three solid innings with three strikeouts. Brewers on the mound: Seth McClung started in place of Braden Looper, who is sidelined by a strained oblique muscle, and worked in and out of trouble throughout a three-inning stint. McClung was charged with two runs -- both scored on Huber's homer in the first inning -- on four total hits and two walks. He struck out three. Closer Trevor Hoffman continued to cruise through the spring season with a scoreless seventh inning that included two strikeouts, and Nick Green worked the final two innings for the save. Up next: The Brewers return to Cactus League action on Friday at 2:05 p.m. CT against Cleveland, a newcomer to the desert. Dave Bush makes the start for the Brewers against Indians ace Cliff Lee. Rookie Omar Aguilar, who has made three scoreless appearances for the Brewers in his first big league camp, is among the Milwaukee relievers scheduled to pitch.
Australia will play one final tuneup against the White Sox on Friday in Glendale, Ariz., before departing for Mexico City and the start of the Classic.
Adam McCalvy is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.