CINCINNATI (AP) — Ryan Braun’s 65-game suspension created a big hole in Milwaukee’s lineup. A hard-swinging rookie is trying to fill it in a bit.
Khris Davis hit a pair of two-run homers in consecutive at-bats for the first multihomer game of his career, powering the Brewers to a 6-4 victory over the Cincinnati Reds on Friday night.
“I don’t see any flaws in him right now,” manager Ron Roenicke said. “He’s really doing a good job.”
The Brewers played their first game since Braun acknowledged in a statement that he used performance-enhancing drugs while recovering from an injury in 2011, when he won the National League MVP award. Players called it a good first step for Braun, who is serving a 65-game suspension from Major League Baseball.
Davis rejoined the Brewers the day after Braun was suspended, getting his third stint of the season. He’s hit all eight of his homers in the 23 games since, including the two-run shot that put Milwaukee ahead 3-2 in the sixth. His next homer snapped a 3-all tie.
“I’m just having fun with it and trying to be loose out there,” said Davis, who is batting .386 in Braun’s absence.
Scooter Gennett also homered for Milwaukee, which won at Great American Ball Park for only the second time in seven games this season.
The Reds lost for only the fifth time in their last 17 games, a surge that has tightened the NL Central race. They came in a season-high 18 games over .500.
Davis connected in the sixth off Homer Bailey and again in the eighth off Alfredo Simon (5-4).
, who had a rough inning.
He also gave up Gennett’s solo homer, which was upheld on review. Gennett also singled and doubled and scored twice.
The Reds’ bullpen has lost set-up man Jonathan Broxton to an elbow injury and been forced to pitch a lot of innings lately.