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STL@ARI: Kennedy strikes out eight over seven innings

Throughout their careers, D-backs right-hander Ian Kennedy and Brewers righty Yovani Gallardo have become quite familiar foes.

The two most notably faced each other in Games 1 and 5 of the 2011 National League Division Series, which the Brewers wound up winning.

Competing against the D-backs seems to bring out the best in Gallardo, who is 6-0 with a 1.02 ERA in seven career starts against Arizona.

Gallardo will try to continue that streak on Sunday when the D-backs and Brewers square off in the series finale at Miller Park.

"He's got three 'plus' pitches, and when you command those pitches, you're going to do well against anybody," Brewers manager Ron Roenicke said. "Why certain players do better against certain teams is hard to say. Sometimes it's a matter of having a team that's more patient and you're able to get ahead with strikes, or it's a team that swings all the time.

"I know one thing. I know we need to see him good tomorrow."

Even with Gallardo's track record against his club, Arizona manager Kirk Gibson is confident that the lineup he pencils in on Sunday will be able to find success against the Brewers' ace.

"I feel differently about this team, I think we've got a real good understanding about that," Gibson said. "Some guys are just tough to beat."

While Kennedy may not have those same kind of numbers, he's had his fair share of success against Milwaukee. Going 1-1 against the Brewers last season, Kennedy is 2-2 with a 3.03 ERA in five career starts.

The right-hander won his second consecutive Opening Day start on Monday by tossing seven innings and allowing just two earned runs with eight strikeouts against the Cardinals.

"The pitching performance by Ian was awesome," Gibson said after that victory. "I don't how else to explain it. He had everything working. Fastball spotted well, it was pumped up to 94. It was kind of the old Ian we saw a couple years ago."

D-backs: Gibson still confident in Bell
Even after reliever Heath Bell gave up three runs in one-third of an inning on Tuesday, Gibson said before Saturday's game that he won't hesitate to put the veteran right-hander back on the mound.

Gibson held true to his word, bringing Bell in for an inning of work in Saturday's contest. In the outing, Bell held the Brewers scoreless, allowing only one hit.

"We're going to get Heath on track," Gibson said. "This guy's had a ton of success in the big leagues, you don't think he's ever been through this before? He's got a ton of confidence. Nobody likes to go through it, but he's not going to run from it."

Brewers: Aramis lands on DL; Braun day to day
Milwaukee was without its two best hitters Saturday. Left-fielder Ryan Braun sat out the game with a stiff neck and third baseman Aramis Ramirez was placed on the 15-day disabled list with a sprained left knee.

An MRI scan confirmed the sprain for Ramirez, who missed two weeks in Spring Training with the same injury. To fill his roster spot, the Brewers promoted utility man Josh Prince from Triple-A Nashville.

"It could have been worse," Ramirez said Saturday. "Last night, I didn't feel good. There's never a good time for injuries, but at least it's not that serious, I guess."

Worth noting
• For the first time since Game 5 of the 2011 NL Championship Series, the Brewers played a meaningful game Saturday without Ben Rouse in the stands. The Fort Atkinson, Wis., native and leukemia survivor attended 167 consecutive regular-season and playoff games, including all 162 games in 2012 to raise awareness for "Be the Match," a national bone marrow donor registry. Rouse attended the Brewers' first four games of 2013 before taking Saturday off.

• D-backs first baseman Paul Goldschmidt is hitting .360 (9-for-25) with five doubles, one home run and seven RBIs in seven career games against the Brewers.

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