Padres 11, Diamondbacks 6
SAN DIEGO (AP)—For one game, at least, Jake Peavy was a better hitter than pitcher.
The Padres’ ace drove in two runs with his first career triple and added a double in San Diego’s 11-6 win against the Arizona Diamondbacks on Thursday.
Peavy’s triple, which he finished with a headfirst slide, highlighted the five-run third and helped the Padres take a 7-0 lead.
The cushion came in handy because Peavy (3-0) went from pitching lights-out to getting pulled with the bases loaded and one out in the sixth. He struck out eight but allowed five runs, four earned, on 10 hits and two walks, and his ERA rose from 0.90 to 2.13.
Earlier in the day, Peavy received a text message from his friend Michael Barrett, the Chicago Cubs’ catcher. Barrett kidded Peavy for his “tired” swing when he had to pinch-hit in the Padres’ 14-inning win at Wrigley Field on Tuesday.
“I just text messaged him back, ‘Hey, I think that thing got me messed up. It got me thinking I was a hitter and I forgot how to pitch today,”’ Peavy said.
“Hey, a win’s a win. I’ll take a win any day of the week,” he said. “Today was a good day. The boys battled.”
Khalil Greene and Rob Bowen hit solo homers for the Padres, who’ve struggled offensively this year but managed to score a season-high in runs. Bowen had three RBIs and scored three runs, both career-highs.
The Padres split the two-game homestand, with the win coming less than 24 hours after they lost 5-3 in 12 innings. It was the most runs the Padres scored at spacious Petco Park since July 18, when they beat Philadelphia 10-6.
Arizona’s Chris Young had a solo homer among his three hits, and scored three times.
Peavy allowed only three baserunners—one of whom he picked off—through four scoreless innings, then got worked over by the bottom of the Diamondbacks’ order. The right-hander allowed nine of his last 13 batters to reach base.
“I just didn’t make a whole lot of good pitches,” Peavy said. “I think I mentally relaxed a little bit with a 7-0 lead. I felt good, and I just kind of let my guard down. It was different.”
Young hit a solo homer with one out in the fifth, his second. Diamondbacks starter Livan Hernandez kept the inning alive with a two-out single, and Arizona added three more singles, including Orlando Hudson’s two-run base hit.
Peavy retired Scott Hairston on a pop foul leading off the sixth but couldn’t get another out. The next four batters reached, including Miguel Montero with an RBI single and pinch-hitter Tony Clark with a walk that chased Peavy.
“Psychologically, when you’re down 7-0 and Peavy is on the mound, that can be a little demoralizing,” Arizona manager Bob Melvin said. “But we kept pecking away and got him out of there, and ended up getting pretty close.”
The Padres jumped on Hernandez in the third. Russell Branyan hit an RBI double and Bowen an RBI single, and both scored on Peavy’s triple over Hairston’s head into the left-center gap.
Peavy said he couldn’t help but slide headfirst.
“It’s hard thinking when you’re out there playing the game,” said Peavy, who then scored on Marcus Giles’ sacrifice fly. “It’s something I know that’s probably not advised. I’m sorry for doing it but I was just playing the game. I’ll try to go the other way next time.”
Giles said he wasn’t surprised to see Peavy flying around second toward third.
“That’s just the way Peav is,” Giles said. “He’s all-out, every time. He’s a grinder.”
Manager Bud Black, a former big league pitcher, said it worries him to see the way Peavy ran the bases. But, Black added, “They love to play, these guys. It’s tough to take the youthful exuberance out of them. You don’t want to. It’s what makes them what they are.”
Giles also hit an RBI single in the second, and Mike Cameron had a sacrifice fly in the first.
Hernandez (1-1) allowed seven runs and eight hits in five innings, walked five and struck out two.
“They are a good-hitting team and they were hitting anything I threw them,” Hernandez said.
Greene hit his third homer and Bowen his first, both off Brandon Medders in the seventh.
Black said the Padres are discussing whether to contact the league office about David Wells’ ejection by umpire Doug Eddings on Wednesday night. Wells, who was jawing at Eddings from the dugout in the 12th inning, said the umpire rubbed his belly and told the pitcher, “You’re fat.” Eddings denied that, saying, “That’s false. I would never.” … Eddings worked behind the plate Thursday.