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Fielder's homer lifts Brewers to sweep of Cards

Jun 12, 2011 - 10:29 PM Milwaukee, WI (Sports Network) - Prince Fielder's two-run homer highlighted a four-run sixth inning, as the Milwaukee Brewers downed the St. Louis Cardinals 4-3 to complete a three-game sweep and claim sole possession of first place in the NL Central.

Mark Kotsay and Ryan Braun each notched an RBI in the decisive sixth, as the Brewers won for the fourth time in five games. They now sit alone atop the division for the first time since July 4, 2009.

Shaun Marcum (7-2) allowed three runs on five hits and two walks while striking out eight over seven innings.

With one down in the top of the ninth, Colby Rasmus drove a John Axford offering to deep center, but Carlos Gomez snared the ball as he collided with the wall to record the spectacular out. Axford then struck out Yadier Molina to tally his 18th save of the season.

"I hit my head on the wall and I got a headache," said Gomez of the catch. "It was worth it."

Rasmus went 2-for-4 with an RBI and a run scored, while Skip Schumaker added a pair of RBI for the Cardinals, who have dropped four of five.

Jake Westbrook (6-4) allowed four runs on eight hits and one walk over five- plus innings to suffer the loss.

Scoreless through three, the game's complexion altered in the top of the fourth with a Jon Jay leadoff ground-rule double. Albert Pujols then flared a ball to right, but Corey Hart made a hard-charging, sliding grab to record the out.

After a Lance Berkman walk, Rasmus dribbled an infield single down the third base line to load the bases. Molina then ground into a force at home, but Schumaker responded, ripping the first offering from Marcum into right, scoring Berkman and Rasmus.

In the sixth, the Cardinals took a 3-0 lead on Rasmus' double to right, which scored Pujols.

The Brewers, spurred by a pulsing crowd, responded in the sixth as Rickie Weeks led off with a single and came around to score on Kotsay's double to center. Braun followed with a seed between third and short, which deflected into left off the glove of the diving Matt Carpenter, allowing Kotsay to score.

The rally and momentum came to a head as Fielder turned violently on a Westbrook sinker, lifting it high and far into the right field seats to send the crowd into a seething frenzy and give the Brewers a 4-3 lead which they would not relinquish.

"We had some momentum there and that one big inning beat us," said Cardinals manager Tony La Russa. "That's tough."

Game Notes

Milwaukee is 25-9 at home -- which stands as the most wins at home this season in the league -- and just 13-19 on the road...The Brewers have not lost consecutive games at home all season...With the win, Milwaukee moved 10 games above .500 for the first time since June 6, 2009...Pujols went 0-for-3 with a walk to snap a nine-game hit streak...On Sunday, the Cardinals placed outfielder Allen Craig on the 15-day disabled list with a right knee contusion and purchased the contract of Andrew Brown from Triple-A Memphis...Brown made his major league debut with a pinch-hit appearance in the seventh, but struck out.