BALTIMORE (AP) — Milwaukee manager Craig Counsell has confidence in Devin Williams and Josh Hader — even when the two bullpen standouts pitch their way into trouble.
Williams escaped the eighth inning after loading the bases with nobody out, and Hader worked around a leadoff double in the ninth as the Brewers held off the Baltimore Orioles 5-4 on Tuesday night.
“That’s what makes them so great,” Counsell said. “In Devin’s case, I thought he was a little out of sorts to start the inning. I thought (pitching coach) Chris Hook, the mound visit was really important there, and Devin got on track and was lights out.”
Andrew McCutchen had three RBIs — including a tiebreaking single in the seventh — and Willy Adames scored three runs for the Brewers.
Cedric Mullins hit a grand slam for Baltimore.
After being shut out in two of their first four games, the Brewers improved at the plate. But then Williams nearly gave the game away by allowing a single and two walks to load the bases with nobody out in the eighth.
The right-hander recovered, however, striking out Chris Owings, Jorge Mateo and pinch-hitter Ryan McKenna to end the inning and keep Milwaukee ahead by a run.
Hader had his own problems in the ninth, allowing a leadoff double by Mullins before eventually retiring Ramón Urías on a flyball with two on for his second save.
“We had some opportunities off some really good pitching,” Orioles manager Brandon Hyde said. “We did a good job creating opportunities. We’re just not cashing in.”
Hoby Milner (1-0) earned his first big league win, part of the 4 2/3 scoreless innings thrown by the Milwaukee bullpen.
Félix Bautista (0-1) allowed a one-out double by Adames in the seventh. Cionel Pérez retired Christian Yelich on a…