Mandatory Credit: Eric Hartline-USA TODAY Sports
Seven magnificent innings of 4-hit ball by Tyson Ross was wasted. That seems to be the theme of the 2014 season for the San Diego Padres, as they dropped a heartbreaker to the host Philadelphia Phillies by the score of 3-0. Reliever Joaquin Benoit even tossed a scoreless 8th, and instead of going with the closer, Huston Street in a scoreless ballgame in the 9th, Bud Black went with Nick Vincent, who within a handful of batters, flushed the team’s pitching effort right down the toilet.
After striking out Marlon Byrd to open the bottom of the 9th inning, a walk to Dominic Brown, a beaning of Carlos Ruiz of all people, and then the unthinkable happened: utility infielder Reid Brignac took Vincent deep for a walk-off, game-winning, 3-run home run over the right field wall to give the Fightin’s the 3-0 win.
It wasn’t as if the teams tore the cover off of the baseball. They combined for 11 total hits–5 of which the Padres’ accrued against Philly starter Cole Hamels. The San Diego native owned the Padres all night, striking out 11 over 8 frames in a tough no-decision. Not a single hitter on either side had more than 1 hit each. In a strange twist, Tony Gwynn, Jr. pinch-hit for Hamels, leading to closer Jonathan Papelbon coming on in the 9th to send down the Friars without as much as a whimper aside from a Chase Headley hit-by-pitch.
Everth Carbrera led the futility at the plate tonight, whiffing three times himself. Perhaps he’s upset that the Padres’ drafted Trea Turner with their first pick on last week’s draft. Hit batting average has dipped to .226 on the season. Hard to be a stolen base threat when you can’t steal first base.
The two teams don’t have long to rest, as the series finale begins at 10:05 a.m. PDT tomorrow morning. The Padres will send the strugglingEric Stults
(2-7, 5.68) to the bump to take on just as badKyle Kendrick
(1-6, 4.30). Perhaps the poor pitching duel could lead the Padres scoring a run or two before they leave town. From Philly, the Padres will move on to Queens to take on the Metropolitans of New York.
Keep The Faith.