The Padres thankfully avoided a sweep at the hands of the Dodgers this evening thanks to some solid pitching by Jason Marquis and some timely hitting by the bottom of the batting order against Clayton Kershaw.
Yasmani Grandal, who batted eighth, helped the Friars draw first blood in the top of the second with a run-scoring single to right field. Dodger right fielder Yasiel Puig, who “did no wrong” until that point in the series, misplayed Grandal’s base-hit and his mishap allowed Jesus Guzman to score (Puig also went 0 for 4 tonight).
The Padres then capitalized again when Jedd Gyorko launched a solo shot to left field off of Kershaw. Gyorko has been one of San Diego’s most pleasant surprises this year, and it has been nice to see that the franchise has a solution at the second base position for the first time in a very long time. San Diego’s hitters weren’t finished after Gyorko’s blast though.
In the top of the sixth Guzman smacked a double to the opposite field off of Kershaw to score one run. Then in the bottom of the ninth, Gyorko and Grandal each hit a sacrifice fly and Will Venable laced a single to plate another as the Friars pushed their lead to 6-2.
While the bottom of the order performed well for San Diego, Jason Marquis shook off his last rough outing and gave the Friars 6.1 solid innings of work (including 5.2 innings of no-hit ball). Although he allowed a gopher-ball to Scott Van Slyke in the bottom of the seventh, the veteran starter only allowed two runs on three hits to go along with six strikeouts on the night.
Thankfully for Marquis, his bullpen held up his one-run lead to ensure a team-leading seventh victory for him. Tim Stauffer, Dale Thayer and Luke Gregerson combined to pitch 2.2 innings of shutout-ball as they slammed the door shut on Los Angeles.
The Padres will begin a four-game set against the Rockies tomorrow at 5:40 PM (Pacific Time), so let’s hope that they can build off of this series-finale win.