Close pitchers’ duel ends in 5-2 Padres loss

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Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

Following last night’s thriller, the Padres and Dodgers clashed in a classic Wild West pitcher’s duel.

One night after treating the baseball world to a “game of the year” candidate early in this young season, the San Diego Padres and Los Angeles Dodgers faced off in the middle game of a three-game tilt in LA.

Matt Waldron started for the Padres and had something of an interesting outing. The right-hander only surrendered one run on three hits in five innings but continuously worked his way out of jams as a result of an uncharacteristic four walks given up. This was the second quality outing in a row for Waldron, who has a 3.14 ERA across 14 ⅓ innings this season. For the Dodgers, right-hander Gavin Stone took the mound and tossed 5 ⅔ no-hit innings before allowing three hits and a run in the inning. Stone would end up allowing 2 runs in 6 ⅔ innings, punching out four.

The Dodgers would score the first run of the game in the bottom of the fifth inning, where, with two on and two out, Mookie Betts hit a ground ball to left field, scoring James Outman on a close play at the plate. The Dodgers took this 1-0 lead into the top of the sixth, where the Padres rallied with two outs. Kyle Higashioka hit a two-out single through the 5.5 holes, and Jackson Merrill (hitting out of the lead-off spot in the order) singled down the line to push the tying run 90 feet away. With two on and two out, Fernando Tatis Jr tied up the game with a double to left center field.

Tom Cosgrove relieved Waldron and got into some trouble early, hitting Max Muncy with a pitch and giving up a one-out single to Enrique Hernandez. Gavin Lux then pulled a sharp ground ball to right field that bounced off Tyler Wade’s glove to give Los Angeles the lead. Cosgrove allowed an RBI single to Mookie Betts before being pulled from the game. Shohei Ohtani then hit a sacrifice fly off new Padres pitcher Adrian Morejon to cap off the inning at 4-1.

Gavin Stone returned to the mound for the Dodgers and would get two quick outs before allowing a ground ball double to Ha-Seong Kim. Tyler Wade would drive in Kim to make the score 4-2, and he would steal second off Dodgers reliever Michael Grove, but Eguy Rosario would punch out to end the threat.

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Morejon returned to the hill for the seventh inning and dealt with some questionable defensive play. On a single by Teoscar Hernandez, Fernando Tatis Jr threw behind the runner at first, but the ball got past first baseman Jake Cronenworth and catcher Kyle Higashioka, allowing Hernandez to get to third. Hernandez would score on a sacrifice fly to make the score 5-2 in favor of Los Angeles.

Daniel Hudson and Jhony Brito would trade scoreless eighth innings to lead the game to the ninth inning. Against Dodgers closer Evan Phillips, the Padres would bring pressure with singles by Manny Machado and Jurickson Profar. Ha-Seong Kim would hit into a fielder’s choice to bring up the tying run with two outs. With runners now on second and third, Tyler Wade would ground out to second base to end the game.

The Padres look to bounce back and take the series tomorrow afternoon at 4:00 pm on Sunday Night Baseball.

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