Paul Molitor hit a three-run home run and Gorman Thomas a two-run homer in Milwaukee as the Brewers tied a team record with a nine-run eighth inning yesterday that completed a 14-1 rout of New York's dethroned league champions.
Milwaukee outscored the Yankees, 34-5, in a three-game series sweep on the heels of Baltimore's five-game rout of New York, which has dropped three games below .500 with its longest losing streak since an eight-game streak in August 1973.
Molitor, leading the majors in runs scored with 126, said the Brewers' weekend offensive display (14-0, 6-4, 14-1) was ideally timed. The Brewers have 13 games to play, six against third-place Boston and seven against the second-place Orioles, two games behind.
"The last two or three weeks were all nip and tuck, bite and fight games," he said. "To have a couple of games where you can relax and have fun removes some of the pressure (although) our looseness and attitude have not changed for the last two or three months. You can relate it to confidence and believing in ourselves as a team. Then sooner or later you get results like this."
Thomas, whose 37th homer broke an overnight tie with the Yankees' Dave Winfield for the AL lead, put in, "Certain people say we'll feel the pressure or that the noose is tightening around our necks. This shows the ballplayers know pressure is just something you put on yourselves . . . that we're not nervous."
Don Sutton, now 2-1 as a Brewer, gave up eight hits in eight innings. Jim Slaton pitched the ninth.
Before the game, Brewer reliever Rollie Fingers threw 20 to 25 pitches and reported tightness, but no pain, in his injured right forearm.
Manager Harvey Kuenn said, "He'll throw again Tuesday. After that we'll know a little more."