The San Diego Padres’ struggles against the Colorado Rockies continued when they faced off for the eighth time this year, a pitching rematch between Eric Lauer (5-5, 4.14 ERA, 4.16 FIP) and German Marquez (6-3, 4.19 ERA, 3.71 FIP). When pitchers faced off May 10th in Colorado, the Rockies won 12-2. The Rockies got the best of the Padres again, winning 14-8 Saturday night.
Seemingly carrying over momentum from Friday’s 16-12 comeback win, the Padres started hot. Third baseman Greg Garcia led off the game with a double down the left field line. Rockies’ left fielder David Dahl reached for it with his bare hand and couldn’t get a grip. Garcia kept running, diving for home just under the tag. Eric Hosmer walked on four pitches and went to third on Manny Machado’s single to right field. A wild pitch scored Hosmer and moved Machado to second. After Hunter Renfroe and Wil Myers struck out, red-hot Ian Kinsler singled home Machado, giving the Padres a 3-0 lead in the first inning.
Colorado answered right back with a single to right by Blackmon and a double to left from Trevor Story. Lauer struck out Nolan Arenado on a high fastball. A light groundball from Dahl to Garcia at third scored Blackmon on the fielder’s choice. Ian Desmond’s groundball to Hosmer ended the inning.
Marquez helped his cause, doubling to left-centerfield to score Tony Wolters who was aboard with a two-out walk. Marquez scored on Blackmon’s single to center field that dropped in front of Myers. Blackmon took second on the throw home. Story’s single to left scored Blackmon to give the Rockies a 4-3 lead. Arenado added a single through the left side of the infield. Dahl bounced a ball off that Lauer stabbed at with his glove, but he couldn’t recover the ball in time to make the play. Bases loaded, Lauer faced Ian Desmond. With his 50th pitch of the first two innings, Lauer forced a groundout to Hosmer to end the barrage.
Machado led off the third with a double, the third straight inning the Padres had their lead-off man aboard. With two outs, Machado advanced to third on a wild pitch. Kinsler tied the game with a single up the middle. Kinsler was nearly picked off twice by Marquez and finally picked off on a third attempt.
Mark Reynolds doubled with one out in the Rockies half of the third. Wolters walked on four pitches, giving Marquez another chance. Marquez struck out bunting. Blackmon, already with ten hits in the series, picked up his third of the game, bouncing a ground rule double off the warning track in left-center. Reynolds scored, giving the Rockies the lead. Robbie Erlin came on in relief to face Story and issued an eight-pitch walk. Arenado, hitting .467 against Erlin, struck out on a check-swing, keeping the score at 5-4 Rockies.
The Rockies added two runs in the fourth on three singles and a sacrifice fly. A strong throw from Myers nabbed Ryan McMahon on the back end of the sacrifice fly, trying to go from first to second.
In the fifth, Machado struck out looking on a ball out of the zone and was ejected for taking issue with the call. Hosmer and Renfroe walked in the inning, but strikeouts of Garcia, Machado, and Myers doomed the scoring opportunity. The strikeout of Myers was his third in the game.
Blackmon had his fourth hit in the game in the fifth, for the third consecutive night against the Padres. Story followed with his third hit of the game, reaching for the fourth time in the game. Arenado lunged after a breaking ball and launched it into the outfield, but Myers made the catch for the second out of the inning. Erlin hit Dahl with a pitch, giving Desmond another chance with the bases loaded. Desmond delivered, launching a grand slam into the visitor’s bullpen in center field, increasing the Rockies’ lead to 11-4.
The Padres loaded the bases with two outs in the top of the sixth on singles by Naylor and pinch-hitter Manuel Margot, and a walk to Garcia. Marquez’s 100th pitch of the game took Hosmer to a full count. Hosmer fouled off a pitch then drilled a single past the shortstop Story, clearing the bases, and cutting the deficit to 11-7. Colorado manager Bud Black went to his bullpen, summoning Carlos Estevez to face Fernando Tatis. Tatis took over shortstop after Machado was ejected. Tatis singled, and Hosmer took second. Both runners advanced on a balk, but Hunter Renfroe was called out on strikes to end the inning.
Andy Green came out of the dugout heated in the bottom of the sixth inning and was promptly ejected. He continued to yell at the umpires for several minutes as Rod Barajas tried to get Green to leave the field. Matt Strahm was also ejected for the Padres.
Phil Maton pitched the sixth for the Padres, recording the first 1-2-3 inning of the game.
Myers opened the seventh reaching second with a liner off the glove of a diving Desmond in centerfield that was ruled an error. Kinsler doubled to centerfield to score Myers. Naylor checked his swing on a fastball just off the plate and walked. Chad Bettis was summoned from the Rockies’ bullpen. He retired the next three Padres hitters in order, preserving the 11-8 lead.
Geraldo Reyes began the seventh inning by walking Story and giving up a single to Arenado. Dahl brought both runs home with a triple and scored on Desmond’s sacrifice fly to right. McMahon collected his third hit of the night and advanced on Bettis’ bunt. Wolters lined a shot past Tatis at shortstop, but the Padres’ rookie made an amazing diving catch to stop the onslaught.
Reyes set the Rockies down in order in the eighth, striking out Blackmon, the first time a Padres pitcher had managed to strike out Blackmon in the series.
The Padres ended the game with a whimper, managing only an infield single by Tatis over the last two innings. Lauer took his sixth loss of the year. Marquez improved to 7-3.
Nick Margevicius (2-6, 5.02, 5.58) will pitch for the Padres in the series finale on Sunday. Twenty-two-year-old Peter Lambert (2-0, 1.50, 3.49) will get his third start of the year for the Rockies. The Padres are 2-6 against the Rockies this season.