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Updated: Saturday, May 17, 2003 6:40 PM EDT
MLB RECAP
Cincinnati Reds
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R H E
6 12 0
Milwaukee Brewers
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Stats: Batting | Pitching
R H E
8 8 0
W DeJean (1-2)
L Williamson (3-2)
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MILWAUKEE 8, CINCINNATI 6
 

MILWAUKEE (Ticker) -- Eddie Perez hit a three-run homer with two outs in the bottom of the ninth inning to give the Milwaukee Brewers an 8-6 victory over the Cincinnati Reds .

Milwaukee has won back-to-back games for the first time since May 5-6 at Chicago and consecutive home games for the first time since April 19-20 against Houston.

"Hopefully, this will be a big boost for the club and we'll be able to come back and get some wins," Perez said. "I knew it was a home run as soon as it left my bat."

Perez' homer was the first game-winner for the Brewers since Richie Sexson hit one off Philadelphia's Mike Jackson on September 1, 2001.

"It was tremendously exciting," Milwaukee manager Ned Yost said. "We needed this. It was a big, big win for us."

The Reds have lost three straight games for the first time in nearly a month. They had taken a 6-5 lead in the eighth inning on a two-run triple by Felipe Lopez .

Cincinnati's Scott Williamson (3-2) worked through the eighth but got in trouble with two walks around a strikeout in the ninth. He fanned John Vander Wal to get within one out of his 10th save, but Perez sent his next pitch off the left field foul pole for his fifth homer.

"I was very disappointed," Williamson said. "We tried and battled back and forth for the lead. It was just one of those things. It was a very tight game and the team is very disappointed."

It was Williamson's first blown save since September 21. He is 0-2 with a 4.01 ERA in 16 career appearances against the Brewers.

Milwaukee won for just the second time in 27 games when trailing after eight innings.

Mike DeJean (1-2) worked a scoreless ninth for the victory, striking out two.

Milwaukee opened a 5-2 lead in the fourth on Scott Podsednik 's two-run triple off reliever Kent Mercker . Aaron Boone 's 11th homer, a two-run shot off Brewers starter Glendon Rusch in the sixth, cut the deficit to 5-4.

After the Brewers struck first on Vander Wal's three-run double in the third, the Reds answered in the fourth with Adam Dunn 's two-run shot off Rusch. Dunn leads the majors with 16 homers, including six in his last six games.

"I've been hitting and seeing the ball well this season," Dunn said. "I've been in a groove from the opening week and my homer was a bomb. I, myself, have been feeling good, but the team has had its ups and downs this season. We need to win games and hopefully keep the momentum going. I feel we should have won this game, but that's how it goes sometimes."

Dunn's homer was just the second off Rusch by a lefthanded hitter this season. Cliff Floyd of the New York Mets had the other on May 2.

Dunn has three homers in 12 career at-bats against Rusch, who was in position for his first win since April 8 before the Reds rallied in the eighth.

Rusch went 5 2/3 innings, allowing four runs and eight hits with five strikeouts and two walks. It was only the sixth time in 10 starts he has gone at least five innings.

Cincinnati starter Jeff Austin struggled with his control, walking six in 3 1/3 innings. He allowed five runs and four hits with two strikeouts, throwing just 40 of 82 pitches for strikes.


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