Blake Snell strikes out 13 in 2-0 victory as Padres take series vs. Diamondbacks

Padres, Blake Snell

Credit: K.C. Alfred

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Credit: Orlando Ramirez, USA Today Sports

Blake Snell was coming off a start against the Oakland A’s on Tuesday night that was very promising. In five innings of work, Snell only allowed one run in five innings while striking out six and walking three. This was a great sign for Snell who was coming off one of his worst outings, allowing seven runs against the same Oakland team.

Going into his start on Sunday, the question was whether he would be able to continue pitching well after a strong start while building on the momentum for the first time in a while. Snell did that and more on Sunday, shutting out the Arizona Diamondbacks in a 2-0 victory for San Diego while going seven innings and tying a career-high with 13 strikeouts.

“The slider was off the charts.  It had great depth to it.  He was locating his fastball as well. Those two combinations make it tough on anybody,” said catcher Austin Nola when asked about Snell’s performance today.

For the Padres, it was the second night in a row that their starting pitcher went seven innings.  Last night, Yu Darvish went seven strong innings only allowing two runs while striking out 12. It is the first time in Padres’ history that starters struck out at least 12.

“It feels good coming out of my hand. I’ve switched things up to make them more consistent. I’m starting to feel stronger again and more like myself. Now it’s continuing to do this, continuing to attack and stay aggressive,” said Snell when following his performance.

Opposite of Snell, Madison Bumgarner for the Diamondbacks had a solid game himself against the Padres’ lineup. In seven innings of work, Bumgarner struck out five and only walked one while giving up a pair of runs. Unfortunately for Bumgarner, he wasn’t quite as dominant as Snell, who shut the Diamondbacks down completely.

For San Diego’s offense, it was once again the Jake Cronenworth show on Sunday afternoon. Cronenworth accounted for both of San Diego’s runs on Sunday, singling home Adam Frazier in the bottom of the first. Frazier had three hits in the afternoon and continues to play well since joining San Diego. Cronenworth then hit a long solo home run to right field in the bottom of the fourth. For Cronenworth, it was his 16th of the season. On top of that, he added a fantastic play at shortstop.

Following Snell, the Padres’ bullpen was able to close down their 2-0 lead, with Emilio Pagan and closer Mark Melancon throwing scoreless innings to finish off the game. Pagan struck out two Diamondbacks in the eighth, while Melancon struck out two of his own in the ninth. In total, the Padres struck out 17 while cruising to a series victory after a tough loss on Friday night got the series started.

The Padres now head into a three-game series with the Miami Marlins at Petco Park starting on Monday night. Joe Musgrove (7-7, 2.87 ERA) looks to get the series started off right for the Padres as August rolls on.

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