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Hall's bat lifts Brew Crew to win over Cards; now game behind Cubbies

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The Milwaukee Brewers are now just one game back in the National League Central after beating the Cardinals in St. Louis 4-3 Tuesday night.

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Bill Hall homered in the final inning for the second night in a row, giving the Brewers a one-game lead over the Redbirds for the National League Wild Card playoff spot.

Meanwhile, the Chicago Cubs lost their second straight game at Arizona 9-2 putting the Brew Crew just one game behind the Cubbies for the divisional lead.

It wasn't that long ago when Hall asked to be traded after he was platooned at third base with Russell Branyan.

However, Branyan has slipped at the plate, while Hall is batting .405 since July 4. The platoon has gone by the wayside, but Brewers' Manager Ned Yost says he'll still use the best player for each day's match-up.

Kyle Lohse took a perfect game into the fifth inning, but the Brewers wore him down in the eighth and tied it.

St. Louis scored all its runs in the first three innings off Jeff Suppan, who lasted seven frames in his first start since coming off an irritated elbow joint.

J.J. Hardy and Prince Fielder each had two hits and an RBI for the Brewers, who now have the Majors' longest current winning streak at six games.

Ryan Ludwick homered for the Cardinals who fell to 0-2 in the Milwaukee series.

Brian Shouse got the win in relief and he improves to 4-1. Salomon Torres earned his 18th save and Kyle McClellan took the loss for the Cards.

The Brewers returned to .500 on the road at 26-26. The St. Louis series resumes tonight (Wednesday). Left-hander C.C. Sabathia will face Cardinals' right-hander Braden Looper.

Stetter sent down

Brewers' reliever Mitch Stetter was sent back to Triple-"A" Nashville Tuesday, after Jeff Suppan was taken off the disabled list.

The Brewers didn't have much of a choice, since Carlos Villanueva is the only other reliever with minor league options remaining.

The left-handed Stetter has had two stints with Milwaukee this year. He's 1-0 in his most recent stint with a 1.74 ERA. Overall, he's 2-1 in 23 appearances, while holding opponents to a .160 batting average.

Meanwhile, former Baltimore outfielder Jay Gibbons signed a minor league contract with the Brewers Tuesday. He was sent to Double-"A" Huntsville.

The 31-year-old Gibbons hit .260 in seven seasons with the Orioles, but his stock fell when he was named in the Mitchell Report for using human growth hormone. Gibbons wrote to every big league team to apologize. The Orioles released him in March.

Also, Ryan Braun's younger brother has signed with the Brewers. Middle infielder Steve Braun went undrafted after his senior year of college at Maryland. He's now with the Brewers' rookie team in Arizona.

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