MILWAUKEE (AP) - Three misplaced changeups put the Milwaukee Brewers in too deep of a hole against the Texas Rangers.
Especially with Kyle Lohse pitching.
The Rangers scored one run in each of the first three innings off Lohse en route to a 4-1 victory on Wednesday night.
In Lohse's seven starts this season, the Brewers have scored a total of 14 runs. In his four losses, they've scored two.
``It's not something that I'm going around hanging my head about or saying anything, these guys are trying hard,' said Lohse (1-4), who was signed as a free agent just before the start of the season after going 16-3 with a 2.86 ERA last year with St. Louis.
Lohse (1-4) allowed four runs on nine hits in 6 1-3 innings.
``I don't worry about what our offense does,' Lohse said. ``I've got to concentrate on what I'm doing out there. That's all I can control. If I make better pitches, we don't need runs.'
Derek Holland allowed one run over seven shaky innings and Texas benefited from two Milwaukee baserunning blunders.
Holland (3-2), who struck out six and walked none, yielded 10 hits - including two in the second, three in the third and three in the sixth. He escaped with the help of some sloppy baserunning by the Brewers, who had a runner thrown out at the plate to end the third and another thrown out at third base in the sixth.
``I was making my pitches and you've got to give our defense credit,' Holland said. ``The play at the plate was huge.'
Tanner Scheppers pitched the eighth and Joe Nathan finished for his ninth save. The Rangers remain the only team in either league without a blown save, 10 for 10.
Ian Kinsler and Mitch Moreland each homered for Texas.
Lohse escaped a 33-pitch first inning, allowing just one run, despite three consecutive singles to open and a one-out walk. He escaped a bases-loaded jam by striking out Geovany Soto and David Murphy to end the inning.
``To start off the game, they came out swinging and finding holes,' Lohse said. ``The first two guys, the ball didn't leave the infield. I got myself in a jam. Then I left a changeup up to (Adrian) Beltre. That was the pitch that hurt me was my changeup. I left one up to him, I left one up to Kinsler and I left one up to Moreland. I've got to do a better job of executing.'
Kinsler's seventh homer, a two-out shot to left field, made it 2-0 in the second. Moreland increased the lead in the third with another solo homer, his sixth.
``We haven't really hit for him,' said Brewers catcher Jonathan Lucroy. ``It's a shame. He really pitched well and gave us a chance to win.'
Milwaukee cut the lead to 3-1 in the sixth, but managed just one run despite two triples and a double. Ryan Braun, who extended his hitting streak to 10 games with a third-inning single, led off with a triple and Aramis Ramirez followed with an RBI double to right-center.
Ramirez , still rounding into shape after missing 23 games with a sprained knee, was out trying to advance to third when the ball squirted away from catcher Soto, who recovered in time to make the throw.
``Aramis, that's a judgment call,' Brewers manager Ron Roenicke said. ``He thought he could make it easy. Sometimes you see things a little different. Any time a ball bounces off a catcher and rolls off, your instincts take over as to whether to go or not.'
Carlos Gomez tripled with two outs when right fielder Nelson Cruz misplayed a fly ball, but struggling Rickie Weeks grounded out to end the inning.
The Rangers added a run in the seventh on Moreland's RBI single.
Texas center fielder Leonys Martin prevented another run in the third, throwing out Jean Segura on a slide at home to end the inning. Segura tried to score from second on Ramirez's single.
``Segura did slide at home, but he slowed up a little bit because they deked him,' Roenicke said. ``He should have ran hard and slid.'
Gomez also had two singles and a double, extending his hitting streak to a career-high 14 games and raising his league-leading average to .386.
``We had a couple opportunities, but Holland knows what he's doing,' Roenicke said. ``I think he steps it up when he's got people on base. All of a sudden you see the 95s. He's got good stuff. He can get out of jams.'
NOTES: Weeks, mired in a horrible slump, was dropped to seventh in the batting order for the first time this season. Weeks went 0 for 3, dropping his average to .188. ... With the victory, the Rangers avoided their first three-game losing streak. ... With his two hits, Braun extended his interleague hitting streak to 30 games, trailing only Matt Lawton (37 games) and Ichiro Suzuki (31 games) for longest all-time. ... The Brewers have scored just 14 runs in Lohse's seven starts this season. ... Moreland has homered in consecutive games for the first time since Aug. 17-19, 2011 against the Chicago White Sox. ... After a disappointing 3-6 homestand, the Brewers have an off day before starting a 10-game road trip to Cincinnati, Pittsburgh and St. Louis - the three teams in front of them in the Central Division.
The Associated Press News Service
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