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Braun homers as Brewers beat A's in exhibition play

PHOENIX - Ryan Braun homered in his first at-bat yesterday, as the Milwaukee Brewers topped Oakland 2-1 in their Cactus League exhibition opener in Phoenix.

The Brewers won despite getting only three hits. Braun said he's far ahead of normal in his preparations for the regular season. That's because he'll compete for Team USA in next month's World Baseball Classic. Braun said he started his pre-workout routines earlier than normal - and before the world tournament begins, he'll get more at-bats than usual in the Brewers' Spring Training games.

Starter Mike Fiers and seven Milwaukee relievers allowed a combined five hits and four walks, while striking out nine. The Brewers will play Cleveland this afternoon. Mark Rogers is expected to start for the Crew.


The Brewers sold 87,000 tickets yesterday, as they opened their single-game ticket sales for the upcoming season at Miller Park. Hundreds of fans lined up outside the stadium as part of the club's annual "Arctic Tailgate" event. And many others bought seats online. Opening Day is sold out, except for limited tickets which remain as part of season-ticket packages. And only limited seats are available for the April 20th game against Chicago, the May 26th contest against Pittsburgh, and the June 23rd game against Atlanta.