Rookie Ben Brown dazzles with 7 no-hit innings as Chicago Cubs outlast Milwaukee Brewers 6-3 in the 10th

Rookie Ben Brown dazzles with 7 no-hit innings as Chicago Cubs outlast Milwaukee Brewers 6-3 in the 10th

MILWAUKEE — For seven innings Tuesday night at American Family Field, Ben Brown was unhittable.

The Chicago Cubs rookie overpowered the Milwaukee Brewers with seven no-hit innings. The only baserunners Brown allowed came on two walks in the fifth, while center fielder Cody Bellinger’s home run robbery for the second out of the seventh kept zeroes across the board.

Brown dazzled with a career-high 10 strikeouts to set up the Cubs to end their five-game losing streak. They required extra innings, however, to secure a 6-3 win in the 10th.

Brown became the first pitcher age 24 or younger with a start of at least seven innings with no hits or runs and at least 10 strikeouts since Justin Verlander’s no-hitter for the Detroit Tigers on June 12, 2007, versus the Brewers. Brown is the first Cub to put up that line at that age since at least 1901.

“He took that first (major-league) outing and just wiped that away and it’s just been so, so good since and the confidence that he shows,” manager Craig Counsell said. “He’s a learner. He’s adapted to whatever he’s had to do and we’re getting a really good pitcher.”

Michael Busch’s home run in the third stood as the game’s lone run until controversy helped the Brewers tie the game in the bottom of the ninth.

Héctor Neris was called for a two-out balk on a would-be first-pitch strike to Willy Adames, advancing Christian Yelich to second. Neris recovered and had Adames down to his final strike when he connected on a splitter and dropped it into left field to tie the game. Adames was thrown out at second on the play to force extras.

“No, it’s not a balk. I came to a stop,” Neris told the Tribune. “I didn’t hold as long as they were expecting, but I was set and made sure I stopped and I threw the pitch. I checked the video and confirmed it’s not a balk.”

Assistant pitching coach Daniel Moskos and reliever Yency Almonte were ejected from the dugout after the inning for arguing the call.

“He did what you’re supposed to do: stop and change direction,” Counsell said. “The league doesn’t call this, doesn’t call this, doesn’t call this and then puts themselves in the middle of a game.”

The Cubs, though, found a way to move past the call, and a scuffling offense finally broke through with a big inning in the 10th.

The Cubs’ Luis Vazquez scores past Brewers catcher William Contreras during the 10th inning Tuesday, May 28, 2024, in Milwaukee. (AP Photo/Morry Gash)

A heads-up play by pinch runner Luis Vázquez allowed him to score from second when Mike Tauchman scorched a liner off Brewers reliever Trevor Megill’s right arm.

Vázquez scampered around third while the ball sat on the grass in front of the mound as Megill clutched his arm. By the time first baseman Owen Miller picked up the ball, Vázquez had slid across home plate for the go-ahead run.

The Cubs poured on five runs in the 10th to mark their most in an inning since May 11, when they tallied seven runs in the fifth against the Pittsburgh Pirates, who walked in six runs in that inning. In the 14 games in between, the Cubs had only four innings in which they scored more than two runs.