CHICAGO (AP) _ Just when the Chicago Cubs thought they'd established a winning attitude at Wrigley Field, the Milwaukee Brewers pitched their way to a three-game sweep.
Rookie Ben Sheets picked up where Jimmy Haynes and Jamey Wright left off as the Brewers throttled the first-place Cubs for three straight games on a field where Chicago had won 13 straight entering the series.
``Not too many guys will say about our pitching staff: 'I want him and him and him,''' Brewers manager Davey Lopes said after Sunday's 6-3 victory. ``But they win battles.''
``It was just big for us to come in here and win three,'' Sheets said. ``Jimmy Haynes started it on Friday and set the tone for the whole weekend.''
Sheets (9-4),who pitched the gold-medal winning game in the 2000 Sydney Games, won his fifth straight decision. He allowed five hits and three runs, including a pair of homers to Matt Stairs, in 5 1-3 innings.
Jeromy Burnitz, Jose Hernandez and Tyler Houston homered for the Brewers in their first sweep at Wrigley Field in nine series.
The Cubs were held to four runs and 18 hits in the three games.
``We understand what happened. We just didn't hit and they came in and outpitched us,'' Cubs manager Don Baylor said.
``We ran into three tough pitchers this weekend,'' Stairs said. ``We're in a skid right now.''
Burnitz hit a three-run homer in the first off Jason Bere (4-4) _ the second straight game Milwaukee had a three-run shot in the first.
``We came off two wins and get three runs in the first and that's a big relief for a pitcher,'' Sheets said.
Rondell White had a 17-pitch at-bat in the second inning against Sheets, hitting 10 foul balls before flying out to left. That pushed up Sheets' pitch total that reached 98 before he was pulled.
``White was the one at-bat that killed him. It took a lot out of him,'' Lopes said.
``That's the longest at-bat I've ever seen,'' Sheets said. ``He kept fouling and fouling.
Stairs, who has three homers off Sheets this season, hit a solo shot in the second and a two-run drive in the sixth following a double by Sammy Sosa.
Houston, like Hernandez an ex-Cub, hit a two-run shot off Jeff Fassero in the eighth to put the Brewers up 6-3.
Notes: Geoff Jenkins returned to the Brewers lineup after missing three games with a sore hand. He had a single and walk. ... Bere, who pitched for Milwaukee last season, has one win in his last 11 starts, going 1-4 with six no-decisions. But the Cubs have scored only 23 runs in his last 10 outings, 10 of them in one game ... The teams have already played four series this season and play one more _ a five-game set at Wrigley in August. ... Since the Cubs and Brewers began playing with an interleague series in 1997 when Milwaukee was still in the AL, the teams have split 52 games.