Yankees blow early lead, fall late to Brewers as win streak ends

MILWAUKEE — The Yankees’ four-game winning streak ended with a thud Friday night in a 7-6 loss to the Brewers, as they blew an early five-run lead before Garrett Mitchell’s two-out RBI single up the middle off Clay Holmes in the bottom of the ninth gave Milwaukee the victory.

Hunter Renfroe led off the ninth with a double, Kolten Wong hit a grounder that sent him to third and Andrew McCutchen walked.

Holmes struck out Jace Peterson before walking Victor Caratini to load the bases and bring up Mitchell.

The loss dropped the Yankees’ lead in the AL East to 5 ½ games over the Blue Jays, who defeated Baltimore.

But while the game was lost in the ninth, Frankie Montas continues to be a concern for the Yankees. The right-hander was unable to get out of the fourth inning and his ERA as a Yankee rose to 6.35 in eight starts.

“I’ve got to do a better job,’’ said Montas, one of the Yankees’ main acquisitions at the trade deadline. “I haven’t performed like I want.”

Garrett Mitchell hits the walk-off single in the ninth inning.
Garrett Mitchell hits the walk-off single in the ninth inning.
AP

Asked if he believed Montas could get back to being the pitcher the Yankees hoped would slide into the No. 2 spot behind Gerrit Cole heading into the playoffs, manager Aaron Boone said, “We need him to. He’ll be back out there.

“We’ve got to get him moving in a good direction [to get] momentum.”

And Boone is confident he can get there before the postseason.

“We’ve got to keep working at it,’’ he said. “He can be a difference-maker when he’s going well.”

The Brewers celebrate after their walk-off win.
The Brewers celebrate after their walk-off win.
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Garrett Mitchell celebrates after his walk off.
Garrett Mitchell celebrates after his walk off.
AP

Despite Montas’ poor outing, Josh Donaldson tied the game with a leadoff homer in the top of the ninth off Taylor Rogers and rookie Oswaldo Cabrera followed with a double to right-center.

Isiah Kiner-Falefa bunted Cabrera to third, but Miguel Andujar, in the game for an ill Marwin Gonzalez, struck out looking. Kyle Higashioka, who had replaced an injured Jose Trevino, then flied out.

The Yankees got off to a fast start, staking Montas to a 5-0 lead in the second inning.

Aaron Judge — who had two more hits, but didn’t homer — led off the game with an infield single. After Giancarlo Stanton flied out, Gleyber Torres continued his hot hitting with a double to center to send Judge to third.

Frankie Montas pitches during the first inning.
Frankie Montas pitches during the first inning.
AP
Josh Donaldson hits a game-tying solo homer in the ninth inning.
Josh Donaldson hits a game-tying solo homer in the ninth inning.
AP

Donaldson’s sacrifice fly to left scored Judge for the game’s first run.

After Cabrera walked, Isiah Kiner-Falefa singled to center to drive in Torres and Gonzalez followed with another base hit up the middle, knocking in Cabrera to make it 3-0.

The Yankees added to their lead in the second, loading the bases with no one out on an Aaron Hicks infield hit, a Judge check-swing single to center and a walk to Stanton.

After Torres flied out to shallow left, Donaldson hit a slow roller to shortstop. The Brewers tried to turn a double play, but second baseman Wong bounced the throw to first and Rowdy Tellez didn’t get in front of it. That allowed Hicks and Judge to score for a 5-0 lead.

But Montas continued his Sonny Gray impression in the bottom of the inning, giving up a two-out, three-run homer to Willy Adames. The 427-foot shot cut the Yankees’ lead to two runs.

Willy Adames hits a three-run home run in the second inning.
Willy Adames hits a three-run home run in the second inning.
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Montas was pulled with just one out in the fourth in his fifth dud in eight starts as a Yankee.

Lucas Luetge struggled and gave up a single to Yelich and an RBI ground rule double to Adames to cut the Yankees’ lead to 5-4.

A sacrifice fly by Tellez tied the score at 5-5

Greg Weissert got the final out of the fourth and Domingo German entered for his second straight appearance out of the bullpen and pitched well again, tossing 1 ²/₃ shutout innings.

Willy Adames celebrates after his RBI double in the fourth inning.
Willy Adames celebrates after his RBI double in the fourth inning.
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Lucas Luetge pitches during the Yankees' loss to the Brewers.
Lucas Luetge pitches during the Yankees’ loss to the Brewers.
AP

Wandy Peralta and Lou Trivino combined to retire four straight batters.

Jonathan Loaisiga entered in the bottom of the eighth and issued a leadoff walk to Peterson. Omar Narvaez bunted back to Loaisiga, who fired to second, where Kiner-Falefa made a terrific scoop to get the force.

But Torres couldn’t come up with a play to his right on Mitchell’s hard grounder for an infield hit and Yelich beat out what would have been an inning-ending double play after the Brewers challenged the call.

Kiner-Falefa then couldn’t handle a sharp grounder by Adames and Milwaukee went ahead.

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