Machado stays hot, Padres win 3-2

Credit: AP Photo

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Credit: AP Photo

Steven Wilson has had one of the most action-packed starts to a career that one can have.

The fireballing 27-year-old started off his career by winning each of his first two games. It got even better for Wilson, as he picked up four holds as part of a hot streak where he sat down 22 consecutive batters. Since that streak ended, Wilson had allowed two home runs in 2.2 innings, as well as a challenging outing in Cleveland, where he walked the first two batters he faced.

However, with regular closer Taylor Rogers unavailable, Bob Melvin went to Wilson to pick up his first career save on Friday night.

Before Wilson came anywhere near the field, Yu Darvish started the game for the Padres. Darvish has finally looked like the elite pitcher that the Padres traded for two years ago. Darvish’s ERA does sit north of 4.00, but that is mainly due to the fact that he had a nightmare start in San Francisco at the start of the season.

This was Darvish’s fourth quality start of the season, eating up seven crucial innings from an exhausted bullpen. There were a lot of balls in play against Darvish, as he struck out just three batters, but he also did not walk any Marlins players. The Marlins threatened with runners on the corners in the second, but Darvish induced a groundout to end the threat and keep the game tied at zero. The Marlins finally got to Darvish in the sixth. Jazz Chisholm Jr. led off the frame with a single before Jesus Aguilar took advantage of Darvish’s lone mistake of the night. Aguilar deposited the ball into left-center field, but the Padres retained the lead thanks to runs from their superstars. 

San Diego found themselves in the lead with a formula that has become extremely familiar in the early parts of this season. Manny Machado picked up a two-out walk before coming around to score on Eric Hosmer’s double, putting the Padres into an early lead. In the fifth inning, Trent Grisham and Matt Beaty quickly doubled the advantage. Grisham led off the inning with a triple before coming around on Beaty’s double. Both balls came off the bat at over 104 miles per hour. Machado stayed hot with a two-out single to score Beaty that proved crucial. Machado’s single made it a three-run lead, which kept the Padres in front even after Aguilar’s home run. 

Robert Suarez worked a perfect eighth inning, which kept the Padres ahead by a run. San Diego’s regular closer Taylor Rogers has been stellar this season, but he had worked on both Wednesday and Thursday. Bob Melvin’s decision to keep faith in Wilson after a tough road trip looked like a poor one, as the Marlins started off the inning with a single and a walk. Wilson did not let the danger faze him, keeping cool to induce three straight flyouts, picking up his first career save. Melvin said that he thought it was “great for him {Wilson} to fight through that.”

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The Padres picked up their second consecutive one-run win, giving them the chance to win the series with a victory on Saturday night. San Diego’s bullpen will return to full strength, meaning that Rogers should be available should a save opportunity arise. However, the confidence that Wilson will have gained from securing the win, as well as Melvin’s trust in him, will prove crucial.

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