MILWAUKEE (TSN-WSAU) Casey McGehee's dribbler up the middle off Carlos Marmol in the ninth inning plated two runs to give the Brewers a dramatic 3-2 comeback win over the Cubs in the opener of a three-game series.
Down 2-1 with runners on second and third and two outs in the ninth, McGehee fell behind 1-2 before working the count full and taking an outside pitch back through the mound to score Rickie Weeks and Prince Fielder with the tying and game-winning runs.
"He's one of the best relievers there is. He's nasty," McGehee said of Marmol. "Maybe once in 20 times that ball slips through. It was in slow motion."
It was the third blown save of the season for Marmol (1-1), whose efforts spoiled Ted Lilly's eight innings of one-run ball.
Corey Hart had a solo homer for the Brewers, winners of two straight following a three-game slide.
Tyler Colvin went 2-for-4 with an RBI for the Cubs, who have lost six of eight.
John Axford (2-1) took the win despite giving up the go-ahead run in the ninth behind Yovani Gallardo, who continued his recent string of effective outings but did not factor in the decision. Milwaukee's starter threw seven scoreless frames, scattering four hits and a pair of walks while striking out seven.
Both starters kept the game scoreless for the first seven innings. Chicago had the best chance early, but Ryan Theriot grounded into a force out to leave the bases loaded in the fifth inning.
Carlos Villanueva relieved Gallardo to start the eighth, and Kosuke Fukudome singled with two outs and stole second. After a walk to Derrek Lee, Colvin plated Fukudome with a base hit to right to break to scoreless tie.
Lilly had faced the minimum from the fourth inning through the seventh, but his first pitch of the eighth was sent deep into the left field bleachers by Hart to tie it.
Chicago regained the lead in the ninth off Axford, as Koyie Hill singled with one out, moved to third on a Starlin Castro base hit and scored on Alfonso Soriano's pinch-hit groundout to short.
Marmol hit Weeks to lead off the bottom half, and following a failed sacrifice bunt, Weeks stole second. Fielder was given a free pass, and Ryan Braun grounded out to short to push both runners up a base before McGehee came through with the big hit.
"Going into the ninth inning with a lead, you feel good about it with your closer, but it didn't happen," Cubs manager Lou Piniella said. "We should have put more runs on the board."
The Brewers and Cubs play again Wednesday nightat 6:35pm.