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WISCONSIN SPORTS ROUND-UP: Brewers' pitching staff solid so far

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MILWAUKEE - It's only been a week -- but the Brewers' pitching staff has been showing the consistency which eluded them a year ago.

Through six games, no Milwaukee starter has given up more than three earned runs. Those starters have baseball's second-best ERA at 1.64. They've held opponents to a .196 batting average. And the Brewers are the only National League team to shut out their opponents in two games this season -- after being the last in the Majors to record a shutout a year ago. Manager Ron Roenicke says he cannot help but think that his team's pitching success will continue. The Brewers blanked Boston 4-0 yesterday, earning their first sweep at Fenway Park since 1993 when they were in the American League. The Brewers are off today. They were supposed to play in Philadelphia's home opener -- but a forecast of rain pushed that game back to a scheduled off-day tomorrow.

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Brewers' Hall-of-Famer Paul Molitor has dropped to ninth on the all-time Major League hits list. New York Yankees' shortstop Derek Jeter passed Molitor yesterday, by recording a pair of hits in a 6-4 victory at Toronto. Jeter -- who plans to retire at the end of the season -- now has 33-hundred-20 career hits, good for eighth all-time. Carl Yastrzemski is next with 3,419. Molitor had 3,319 hits with Milwaukee, Toronto, and Minnesota. Jeter says he doesn't have a checklist of the players still above him on the list, but he's trying to enjoy the ride. He said it was an honor to move past Molitor because he's quote, "someone that you know, and that you appreciate and respect." Pete Rose is the all-time hits leader with 4,256, followed by Ty Cobb and former Brewers-and-Braves' slugger Hank Aaron.

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The UW-Milwaukee baseball team has the nation's longest home winning streak at 19 games. The Panthers topped Oakland 8-2 yesterday. They scored four times in the seventh inning to pull away. Freshman Justin Langley earned the win. He threw five scoreless innings before Oakland scored their only two runs in the sixth. Milwaukee completed a three-game sweep of the Golden Grizzlies. The Panthers are now 4-2 in the Horizon League and 9-12 overall.

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Milwaukee Bucks' forward Carlos Delfino is getting back in shape, after he had a second operation in December on a severe right foot injury from last spring. The Bucks signed the 31-year-old Delfino to a two-year contract last summer, under the assumption that he would recover after his first surgery. That didn't happen, and Delfino returned recently to Milwaukee from his native Argentina to work with the team's trainers and doctors. He was injured last May in the NBA playoffs, when he was with the Houston Rockets. Delfino admitted having doubts that he would play again -- but now, he's confident that he will return. Delfino says he's been shooting free throws, and has done light lifting, and riding on an exercise bike. The Bucks are 14-63, after they set a new team record during the weekend for losses in a season. The Bucks won't play again until Wednesday night, when they host Indiana.

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The University of Wisconsin softball team dropped to 3-5 in Big Ten play, after splitting a double-header with 14th-ranked Minnesota. The Badgers won the opener, 2-1 yesterday in Minneapolis. It was their third victory over a Top-25 opponents, the others coming against Arizona and Northwestern. Wisconsin lost Game-Two against the Gophers, 3-0. Wisconsin is now 17-15 overall.

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The UW-Green Bay softball squad split a twin-bill at home against Youngstown State. The Phoenix won yesterday's opener 5-2 before being blanked in the nightcap 2-0. Green Bay is now 3-2 in the Horizon League, and 14-7 overall.

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