Mazur dominates in debut but Padres offense scuffles in 4-2 loss

Credit: AP Photo

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Credit: AP Photo

Following a disappointing loss Monday to Los Angeles Angeles, the Padres had something to look forward to: San Diego called up the organization’s #5 ranked prospect, Adam Mazur, to make his Major League Baseball debut on the hill.

“Just go and be you,” Padres skipper Mike Shildt revealed he told Mazur before his debut. “Go execute what got you here and enjoy it.”

Mazur listened to his manager and shined, allowing just one earned run on two hits over six frames to begin his career. While the hurler issued four free passes, he induced three crucial twin killings to limit any damage from the debut nerves impacting his command.

Despite Mazur’s debut gem, the Padres offense remained quiet as the Angels, who had been 1-8 in their past nine games entering the series, took the series with a 4-2 win over San Diego.

After the Padres plated just one run against lefty Tyler Anderson on Manny Machado‘s first-inning home run in the 2-1 loss to open the series, San Diego’s alarming splits versus left-handed pitching progressed. Despite being a right-handed heavy lineup, the Friars are slashing a bleak .229/.300/.350 against lefties through the first 63 games of the 2024 campaign. Halos manager Ron Washington gave the start to another southpaw in Patrick Sandoval, entering the action with a 5.34 ERA over 60.2 frames.

At the end of his line, Sandoval spun six innings of one-earned run baseball as San Diego again scuffled against left-handed pitching.

The Padres struck first in the third inning via a two-out rally. Sandoval hit Luis Arráez with a fastball before Fernando Tatis Jr. extended his hitting streak to 10 games for the first time since 2021 on a single. Then, Machado notched his second two-strike knock of the day in as many at-bats, an RBI single to left that scored Arráez from second.

However, the Angels answered immediately in the bottom of the third inning when Los Angeles cashed in a free pass Mazur issued to Luis Guillorme‘s walk. After Guillorme advanced to second base on a fielder’s choice, Luis Rengifo plated him on a bloop 79-MPH single to even the score 1-1.

The Padres missed a the opportunity to place Mazur in line for the win in the sixth frame. Trying for another two-out rally, Jurickson Profar singled, and Donovan Solano walked. After a six pitch left-on-left battle, Jake Cronenworth grounded out to shortstop to end the inning.

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Yuki Matsui relieved Mazur in the seventh inning and loaded the bases, issuing two walks and a single to the three Halos he faced. Enyel De Los Santos entered with no one out to face Mickey Moniak, who grounded into a 1-2 force out. Then, Zach Neto gave the Angels their first lead of the night with a two-RBI double. Los Angeles extended their lead 4-1 on a wild pitch. All three runs in the inning were charged to Matsui.

The Friars got one back in the top of the eighth inning when Tatis Jr. crossed the plate on Cronenworth’s two-out single. However, the inning left San Diego unsatisfied as it began with two singles countered by back-to-back punch outs looking. Frustratingly, the Friars went down in order in the ninth.

Padres starters have hurled a combined 17.1 innings with three earned over the past three games, all of which have been losses.

“It’s super frustrating,” Shildt said post-game. “It’s what the name of the game is—starting pitching and eating up innings. Those guys have done their part and given us a chance.”

San Diego looks to salvage the final game of the three-game set tomorrow (6/5) and make it a 3-3 road trip with Dylan Cease on the mound.

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