To his credit, Patrick Corbin did an outstanding job over his eight innings of work against the Padres this afternoon. Overall, the left-hander allowed one run and tallied eight strikeouts against San Diego’s hitters in the rubber-match of the series. Unfortunately for Corbin, the one run proved to be one too many as his lineup ran into a freight-train named Tyson Ross.
If one missed the top of the first inning, then they missed the only run of the entire game. Just like they had done last night, the Friars’ lineup came up big with two outs and a man on base. Chase Headley tripled off of Corbin with two down in that frame, and the third baseman was singled home by Carlos Quentin in the following at-bat.
Armed with a 1-0 lead, I was happy to see the Padres’ hitters give Ross some much needed run support early in their game against Corbin. Little did I know that the one run was all that Ross would need during the entirety of his start.
In what was arguably the best performance of Ross’ entire big league career, Arizona’s hitters simply could not find a solution for his fastball and extremely effective slider. The slider in particular was what made the right-hander extremely effective, and the fact that his fastball stayed in the mid-90’s until the seventh and eighth innings did not hurt either. Ross only surrendered three hits and one walk during his eight innings of work, and he mowed down seven of Arizona’s hitters via the strikeout.
The bottom of the third was the only real “problem inning” for Ross after he allowed a leadoff triple to Cliff Pennington. San Diego’s starter however retired the next three hitters in a row to strand Pennington at third as he prevented the Diamondbacks from tying the score at 1-1.
After Pennington’s triple, Ross only allowed two more base-runners over the final five innings of his start. Tyson’s stability through those innings proved to be huge, especially because Corbin was in such a groove after he allowed the run-scoring single to Quentin in the top of the first.
Kudos must also go to Huston Street for his efforts in the ninth inning. Armed with only a 1-0 lead, Street came in and shut the door on the heart of Arizona’s batting order in a 1-2-3 frame. Street’s save capped off Ross’ second win of the season, and second win in as many starts as the Friars took the final two games of their three-game set with the Diamondbacks.
With their starting rotation an already “hodge-podge” brigade, the Friars appear to have found a potential long-term solution in the form of Ross. Now healthy, the final two months of the season should provide for numerous amounts of opportunities for Ross to solidify a spot for himself in the back-end of San Diego’s starting rotation.
Tomorrow, the Padres will finally head home to Petco Park to begin a three-game series with the Reds. Sean O’Sullivan, another mid-season addition to the starting rotation, will take the mound in game one tomorrow at 7:10 PDT.
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