Padres move into tie for second place in NL West; defeat the Dodgers 6-2

Pasedena Star-News

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Photo Credit: Keith Birmingham Pasadena Star-News

A grand slam off the bat of Manny Machado helped propel the San Diego Padres to a 6-2 win over the Los Angeles Dodgers. 

Chavez Ravine- Los Angeles, California

On Oct. 28, 2019, the San Diego Padres surprised many when they announced the signing of Jayce Tingler as the 21st manager in franchise history.

So far, Tingler has been pushing all of the right buttons and making all of the right moves as manager.

A Manny Machado grand slam, prefaced by two bunts and two Dodger errors, was all the offense needed for the San Diego Padres to defeat the Los Angeles Dodgers 6-2 as San Diego captured the second game of a four-game series.

Padres pitchers once again tamed the potent Dodgers offense as Garrett Richards and four relievers combined to limit Los Angeles to just two runs.

Once again, Los Angeles drew first blood. A Justin Turner line drive bounced off the glove of Jurickson Profar to lead off the second inning, but Richards bounced back to get the next two outs via a groundout and strikeout.

However, Chris Taylor’s line-drive single to right field brought Turner home. The next batter, Enrique Hernandez, slapped a double over the head of Profar, but a poor slide by Taylor combined with a strong throw from Fernando Tatis Jr. gunned down Taylor at home.

Things got chippy after the play with catcher Austin Hedges taking exception to Taylor going towards Hedges with his shoulder down instead of sliding into home plate on the foul side of the basepath. Words were exchanged, but cooler heads ultimately prevailed.

Enter the third inning and Tingler’s brilliant strategy: the long lost art of small ball.

Jake Cronenworth continued his white-hot pace with a double, and Hedges dropped a bunt, intending to advance Cronenworth to third. Ross Stripling’s ensuing throw, however, skipped away from Cody Bellinger and brought Cronenworth scampering home with San Diego’s first run.

Seeing how well it worked the first time, Tingler called for Profar to drop one down as well. What happened next can only be described as déjà vu, as Turner’s throw also pulled Bellinger off the bag.

Two bunts. Two errors. One run for San Diego. Momentum gained.

Tatis Jr. loaded the bases with a single and, after a Trent Grisham ground out, up stepped Machado with one out.

With the first pitch of the at-bat, Stripling hung an 81 MPH slider that didn’t slide. Machado sped up his bat and took the ball 410 feet to center field at a scalding 105.3 MPH for his tenth career grand slam.

The grand slam was all it took for San Diego to cruise to victory. Profar’s fifth-inning home run off of Stripling padded the lead while Richards and the San Diego bullpen put the Dodgers to rest.

Even a late comeback attempt in the ninth inning was snuffed out. After Los Angeles scraped together a run in the ninth off of Javier Guerra, Drew Pomeranz needed only one pitch to extinguish the Dodgers’ hopes and net his fourth save of the year.

With the victory, San Diego moves into second place at 11-7, tied with Los Angeles for second place in what is shaping up to be a wild National League West.

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