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Brewers' miscues prove costly

Brewers' miscues prove costly

PHILADELPHIA -- There is very little margin for error in a close game. The Brewers learned the hard way Wednesday in Game 1 of the National League Division Series at Citizens Bank Park.

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An error by second baseman Rickie Weeks, coupled with a fly ball that was almost caught by Mike Cameron in center field, opened the door in a pivotal third inning.

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All three of the Phillies' runs in their 3-1 win came in the third. All were unearned off 22-year-old starter Yovani Gallardo, who pitched admirably but had his day cut short after four innings and 75 pitches.

Carlos Ruiz opened the inning with a single, and Cole Hamels dropped a sacrifice bunt. The conditions were wet as it was drizzling and the winds were gusting.

Brewers third baseman Bill Hall initially thought he had a play at second base to get Ruiz. But he bobbled the ball and opted to throw to first in hopes of nabbing Hamels.

Weeks was covering first. The throw was a bit low, and Weeks dropped the ball.

"It was low, but it was catchable, though," Weeks said. "That's really all I can say about it."

With two outs, the Phillies opened the scoring on Chase Utley's two-run double to center. Cameron went back for the ball and had it momentarily before it popped out.

The Phillies added a third run when Shane Victorino walked with the bases loaded.

"You could just see the drizzle, how it was cutting across and going all kind of ways," said Cameron, who compared the wind to the experience of Chicago's Wrigley Field. "My first instinct when I read [the ball] was that it was not going to travel because of the way the wind was blowing in. Somehow, when I cut across, it kind of took off a little bit."

Utley ripped into a fastball, which came on the fifth pitch of the at-bat. Gallardo had a 2-2 count after throwing four straight off-speed pitches.

"We missed our spot a little bit, and Utley put the good part of the bat on it," catcher Jason Kendall said. "If Cam can't get it, nobody can."

Runs are often hard to come by in the postseason, and the three runs held up.

"That's the beauty about this game," Kendall said. "Every playoff game I've been in, it's been like that. Our guys threw the ball good. [Cole Hamels] threw the ball good. Unfortunately for us, they got some runs and we didn't. It's done. It's over with. We'll try to get a split and go back to Milwaukee."

Weeks didn't think jitters factored into the Brewers' rough day.

"When you go out there for the first time in a game like this, I didn't feel it," Weeks said. "We just got in a situation where Hamels threw a great game today. Period.

"We're playing a pretty good team. That's just baseball. The ball doesn't fall your way all the time. We've got to come out tomorrow and play good baseball."

Joe Frisaro is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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