After another stellar outing by Tyson Ross on Saturday evening, the Friars looked primed to win the “rubber-match” of their three-game series with the Reds this afternoon. The Padres had a 2-0 lead when the eighth inning rolled around, their starter was in fine form, and it definitely looked like they would beat the Reds. Sadly for San Diego, they could not hold on and they eventually lost to Cincinnati by the score of 3-2 in the bottom of the 13th inning.
The Padres drew first blood on a kooky play in the top of the second. With the bases loaded and one out, Rene Rivera hit what was supposed to be a routine sacrifice fly to center field. After he received the relay throw from center, Cincinnati’s shortstop Cesar Izturis tried to throw out Logan Forsythe at second base. Izturis botched the throw though, and Forsythe came all the way around to score.
Armed with a 2-0 lead, everything looked bright for San Diego considering how well Ian Kennedy pitched. In fact, the newly acquired starter did a terrific job through the game’s first seven inning for the Friars in his second start with the team.
The right-hander only allowed one hit during the aforementioned span, and he most importantly held Cincinnati off of the scoreboard. At one point, Kennedy even retired 16 batters in a row! Unfortunately for Kennedy, he was left with a “no-decision” because Xavier Paul tied the game with a two-run home run off of him in the bottom of the eighth.
I can’t say that Kennedy is entirely at fault here, particularly because his run support was essentially non-existent. San Diego’s lineup went 1-17 with runners in scoring position, and they left 15 base runners stranded during 13 innings of play! At least to me, the Padres’ hitters could have at least spotted their starter another insurance run or two over that span.
After Paul’s dinger though, all bets were off and the game was deadlocked. From then on it was four straight innings of “zeros” on the scoreboard while both teams waited to see whose bullpen would blink first. San Diego’s bullpen, just like they have for most of the season, was eventually the one that folded.
The normally reliable Tim Stauffer loaded the bases after he allowed a walk, a double, and hit a batter before Joey Votto played the hero for the Reds. Votto’s sacrifice fly gave the Reds the go-ahead run and the win, and the Padres lost their second consecutive series in a row.
Today marked another tough loss for the Friars. As it has been all season long, San Diego has seemed to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory more often that they have done the opposite.
As far as the upcoming schedule goes, the Padres will head to Denver to finish off their six-game road trip with a three-game set against the Rockies. The Friars are tied with Colorado for third place in the division, so a series win would provide some cushion for San Diego as they try to finish the season strong.
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