The San Diego Padres came into Saturday’s game three against the Arizona Diamondbacks in desperate need of a win. Not only had San Diego lost three straight after Friday night’s loss, but they now sit 10 games behind the San Francisco Giants for first place in the National League West.
The Diamondbacks, owners of the worst record in Major League Baseball at 37-80, seem to have the Padres’ number in games at Chase Field. In their last 14 games heading into Saturday’s game, the Padres were 1-13 in Arizona. The worst of it had yet to come for the Padres, as they’d find out on Saturday.
Tyler Gilbert, Diamondbacks’ 27-year-old rookie pitcher, making his first career start on Saturday against the Padres, dominated the struggling Padres’ lineup in the form of a no-hitter. Gilbert struck out five and walked three but did not give up a hit in his nine full innings of work as Arizona beat the Padres 7-0.
Gilbert located his pitches all night, relying on his location and movement due to a lack of overpowering stuff. His fastball sat in the low 90s all night, but he moved around the strike zone and his defense made great plays behind him at times. The Padres hit a lot of balls hard, but they were right at somebody basically all night.
“Tip the cap to Gilbert obviously, it was a special night for him. He had us off..a lot of 4-seam, and a lot of cutters and we couldn’t figure him out,” said Padres manager Jayce Tingler when discussing Gilbert’s no-hit night.
San Diego starter Joe Musgrove struggled to find command early on, giving up five runs in the first inning, which seemed to bury the Padres’ spirits right away. He was able to get through five innings to save the bullpen, but he ended up allowing six runs on 10 hits while striking out four and walking two. The team never really bounced back after Musgrove’s disaster of a first inning.
“Nobody said this was going to be easy. Whenever you’re down like this, it’s an opportunity to come together and fight together,” said Tingler about his club.
The Padres will look to avoid being swept at Chase Field in Sunday’s game four. Craig Stammen (5-3, 3.31 ERA) will get the spot start for the Padres.
Kevin is a San Diego Native covering the San Diego Padres and their affiliates