San Diego Padres Lose in Extras, Lauer Shines Again

SAN FRANCISCO, CA - JUNE 24: Eric Lauer #46 of the San Diego Padres pitches against the San Francisco Giants during the first inning at AT&T Park on June 24, 2018 in San Francisco, California. (Photo by Jason O. Watson/Getty Images)
SAN FRANCISCO, CA - JUNE 24: Eric Lauer #46 of the San Diego Padres pitches against the San Francisco Giants during the first inning at AT&T Park on June 24, 2018 in San Francisco, California. (Photo by Jason O. Watson/Getty Images) /

The San Diego Padres took the final game of their four-game series in San Francisco into extras, but couldn’t leave the Bay Area with a win.

Things began with a bang for the San Diego Padres today, as Manuel Margot extended his hitting streak to six games with a leadoff homer to put the Friars ahead 1-0 right off of the bat. Hunter Renfroe walked with one out, but no other damage was done.

Eric Lauer made quick work of the Giants in the first, striking out Gorkys Hernandez and Brandon Belt before getting Andrew McCutchen to fly out. Lauer has been locked in for some time now, and his dominance would continue today.

The Padres went down in order in the second, and Lauer worked around a Hunter Pence walk to register another scoreless frame. Renfroe singled with two outs in the top half of the third, but nothing came of it.

Lauer pitched a perfect third inning and used a variety of pitches to keep San Francisco’s hitters consistently off-balance. He finally allowed his first hit of the afternoon in the bottom of the fourth, a one-out single courtesy of McCutchen. Buster Posey singled in the next at-bat, but Lauer got Brandon Crawford to ground into a 4-4-3 double play and escaped the jam.

Friars’ offense is dormant

Matt Szczur singled to lead off the fifth, but Lauer laid down a poor bunt and Szczur was erased on a fielder’s choice. Margot replaced Lauer at first after a groundout, and Eric Hosmer continued his slump with a fly out to center.

Eric Lauer navigated his way around a two-out Alen Hanson single in the fifth, finishing off the frame with a strikeout of his counterpart, San Francisco rookie hurler Dereck Rodriguez.

The Padres went down in succession in the sixth, and Lauer finally cracked in the top half of the inning. Hernandez smoked a line drive over the center field wall (right where the angles meet) to tie the game at one apiece. He allowed a two-out double to Posey but retired Crawford to limit the damage to just one run.

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Padres’ bullpen takes over and does their job, again

After going down one-two-three in the seventh, the Padres brought Craig Stammen into the game to replace Lauer and he set down the Giants in similar fashion in the bottom half, punching out Pence and Hanson.

Wil Myers sent a single into right field to lead off the eighth, but Margot grounded into a 6-4-3 double play to erase the runner. Hosmer walked, but Renfroe flew out to right to end the threat.

Kirby Yates pitched the bottom of the eighth and set down the first two batters of the inning before giving up a double to left field that Renfroe got a glove on but couldn’t reel in.

He redeemed himself in the next at-bat, though, with a fantastic, over-the-wall catch along the right-field wall to end the inning.

Giants’ lefty Will Smith retired the Friars in order in the top half of the ninth, and Yates returned the favor in the home-half to send the game into extra-innings.

Sam Dyson replaced Smith in the tenth to the same results as his predecessor, then Andy Green made the call to bring in his newly-activated, ten-year MiLB-veteran reliever, Robert Stock, to make his MLB debut. And what a debut it was.

Stock’s debut was great, what followed wasn’t

After allowing a leadoff double to Joe Panik to start the frame, Stock struck out Hanson, induced a groundout from Austin Slater, and K’d Hernandez to work out of trouble. Very impressive.

The Padres went ahead in the top of the eleventh, but the lead was short-lived. Margot led things off with a walk, and after Hosmer and Renfroe were retired, Cory Spangenberg pulled a single to right, scoring Margot and putting Stock in line for a win in his first MLB game.

Alas, that was simply not in the cards. Brad Hand worked the bottom of the eleventh and struck out Brandon Belt to get things started. McCutchen doubled in the next at-bat, then Hand intentionally walked Buster Posey, and hit Crawford with the next pitch.

Next: Trading for Franco is an Unnecessary Move

With the bases loaded and one out, Hunter Pence golfed a slider into right field to score Cutch and Posey and, just like that, the San Diego Padres head to Texas with a series loss instead of a split.