San Francisco Giants manager Bruce Bochy doesn’t want to hear about his team playing the role of spoiler in the NL West. Regardless, they’ve been doing little to slow down the San Diego Padres’ playoff run.
The Padres (80-67) won 6-0 on Saturday for their seventh straight victory against the Giants and sixth in a row at home. It also moved San Diego two games behind NL West-leading Arizona, which lost to the Los Angeles Dodgers earlier in the day.
San Diego also leads Los Angeles and Philadelphia by 1 1/2 games in the wild card race and has a game in hand.
San Francisco, though, lost Bonds in the second inning with a strained right big toe. Bonds, who has 762 career homers, jumped at the wall trying to catch a fly ball and landed awkwardly. Bochy said X-rays were negative and that Bonds likely would be out two-to-three days.
The Giants (66-82) are mired in last place in the West, but Bochy doesn’t like the spoiler label.
“The way I look at, this is about us finishing out the season strong, not about being a spoiler,” he said. “We have some things we want to accomplish in the final games and that’s what we are looking at.”
With one of their few offensive threats in Bonds apparently sidelined, Peavy (17-6, 2.44 ERA), who owns the lowest ERA in baseball and leads the NL in wins and strikeouts (215), should have an easier time as he tries to pad his impressive numbers in hopes of winning the NL Cy Young Award.
“I still have three or four starts left,” he told the Padres’ official Web site. “Let’s see what the rest of the season brings.”
Peavy is 8-1 with a 2.37 ERA over his last 10 starts. He gave up two runs in seven innings of Tuesday’s 9-4 road win over the Dodgers, giving him the most wins by a Padres pitcher since Kevin Brown’s 18 in 1998.
“It just comes down to executing pitches. This late in the season, you’ve definitely got to pick and choose your spots and save your bullets,” said Peavy, who improved to 9-1 with a 2.13 ERA on the road. He is 8-5 in 17 home starts with a 2.68 ERA.
Peavy made his season debut against the Giants on April 3, and scattered three hits over six innings of a 7-0 road win in his only start of the season against San Francisco. He’s 9-6 with a 3.44 ERA in 19 career starts against the Giants.
Brett Tomko, signed on Sept. 4 after being cut by the Dodgers, allowed four hits over six innings in his first start with San Diego. He combined with four relievers on a six-hitter—the Padres’ major league-leading 19th shutout, tying the team record set in 1985.
In the finale, the Padres will face rookie Tim Lincecum (7-4, 3.99), who is 0-1 with a 4.18 ERA over his last four starts and has only one win in eight outings since beating Atlanta on July 26.
The right-hander didn’t get a decision in the Giants’ 5-3 loss to Arizona on Monday, but gave up two runs and six hits in 6 2-3 innings to bounce back after lasting a career-low three innings in his previous start on Sept. 4 at Colorado.
Lincecum’s only start against the Padres came on June 25, when he gave up four hits in seven scoreless innings of the Giants’ 4-3 win in 11 innings at home.