Untimely errors cost Padres again in 6-5 loss to Cubs

Credit: AP Photo

Credit: Padres

Chicago, Illinois

Both the Chicago Cubs and San Diego Padres were feeling the sweltering Chicago heat Friday as temperatures reached the mid 90’s with humidity.

Even with an excessive heat warning in place, baseball would still be played on this day as fans struggled to find ways to keep cool while sitting in the historic seats of Wrigley Field.

The heat must’ve gotten to both Eric Lauer and Jon Lester on the mound, as the Padres and Cubs engaged in a back-and-forth offensive affair that saw three lead changes and two ties. However, the Padres were snakebit by poor defense again in the eighth inning.

San Diego got on the scoreboard first when Manny Margot singled to push his modest hitting streak to four games and later scored on Hunter Renfroe’s sacrifice fly. The Padres increased their to 3-0 in the third inning when Manny Machado, who was playing his first game in Wrigley Field, hammered Lester’s first offering into left field for a two-run home run. Lester seemed to be off his game today as he allowed four runs and 12 hits, the highest amount of hits he has allowed in a game since 2014.

However, Lauer wasn’t doing so hot (pun fully intended) either. Making his first start since coming off the bereavement list, Lauer was cruising until an Albert Almora line drive hit Lauer square in the back. While Lauer continued to pitch after, a single and a walk brought Anthony Rizzo to the plate. Rizzo, who hadn’t hit a home run since June 15th, slugged a go-ahead grand slam on a fastball that caught too much of the plate, and the Cubs suddenly had a 4-3 lead.

Francisco Mejia tied the game up with an RBI double in the fifth inning, but Javier Baez uncorked another home run off of Lauer in the bottom half of the inning, this time a solo shot to center field to make the score 5-4 in favor of the Cubs. After issuing a walk, Lauer made his exit from the game in favor of Luis Perdomo. Lauer, who pitched 4.2 innings of five-run ball, hadn’t allowed a home run since his start on June 8th against the Washington Nationals and hadn’t allowed multiple home runs since his second start of the season on April 2 against the San Francisco Giants. Coincidentally, he was the losing pitcher of record in both of those starts.

The score remained unchanged until the eighth inning when Josh Naylor hit his first pinch-hit home run of his career off of Steve Cishek, even including a flip of the bat for good measure. However, the poor defense that plagued San Diego in Miami followed them to Chicago. Craig Stammen got the first out in the bottom of the eighth then allowed a single to Rizzo. A ground ball off the bat of Addison Russel was made for a double play, but Fernando Tatis Jr. threw the ball to the side of Greg Garcia for an error. After an intentional walk, David Bote slapped a ground ball to Machado. Machado got the out at home but Mejia, trying to turn a double play, fired the ball to first baseman Eric Hosmer who couldn’t make the catch to allow Russel to score the go-ahead run.

The error was charged to Hosmer, but an equal case can be made for the error to go to Mejia. No matter whose fault it was, it was the seventh error committed by Padres fielders in the past three games and ultimately cost them a win today as former Padre Craig Kimbrel picked up his fifth save of the year.

The Padres need to tighten up the screw on defense, or they will continue to have outcomes like today. Joey Lucchesi will take the mound tomorrow for San Diego.

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2 thoughts on “Untimely errors cost Padres again in 6-5 loss to Cubs

  1. What a horrible loss. Starting pitcher left in after he get’s drilled in the back? Most managers would have seen that, coupled with summer in Chicago and played it smart and removed the guy. Not Andy Green though. His motto is “always wait, until it is too late”.
    The errors at the end of the game were ugly, too. Bone-head throw by Mejia, but Hosmer has to come up with that ball.

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