Nothing personal, that’s just how he is.
“I’ve always said, I don’t play baseball, I feel it,” Bradley said.
Everyone at Wrigley Field felt Bradley’s presence Tuesday night when he hit his towering two-run homer off Peavy to help the Cubs beat the San Diego Padres 6-2 on Tuesday night.
Alfonso Soriano(notes) and Kosuke Fukudome(notes) each had two doubles and three hits, Bobby Scales(notes) added his first major league home run and Rcih Harden won his fourth straight decision for the Cubs.
Peavy (2-5), whom the Cubs were interested in obtaining in the offseason, is the last Padres starter to get a win, on April 16. San Diego has lost nine straight road games, and four in a row overall.
Off to a poor start after signing a three-year, $30 million deal, Bradley watched his 439-foot homer to deep center, his fourth of the season, before rounding the bases. The drive just fell shy of the second deck in the bleachers, which is rarely reached outside of batting practice. Bradley has a five-game hitting streak, but came into Tuesday’s game hitting .179 with only six RBIs.
“I was just glad we got the lead and won the game,” said Bradley, who played 42 games with the Padres in 2007. “Jake’s probably the best pitcher I ever played with.”
Scales’ home run came as a pinch hitter in the seventh, and the 31-year-old career minor leaguer has hit safely in the first five games of his major league career.
Not that he’s bragging.
“It isn’t easy,” Scales said. “This game will humble you. So I’m just trying to keep my head down and keep grinding.”
Backed by an early lead, Peavy got out of several jams before Soriano’s RBI double in the fifth made it 2-1.
“That got us going,” Cubs manager Lou Piniella said. “We started to swing the bats after that.”
“He’s starting to swing it,” Piniella said. “That ball he hit tonight, that’s the longest ball I’ve seen hit here in the few years I’ve been here. I was happy for Scalesy, too.”
His hitting streak is the longest for a rookie Cub since Jerome Walton’s seven-game streak in 1989, according to Elias Sports Bureau.
Peavy gave up three runs on six hits in six innings, striking out nine and walking two.
“I made a bad pitch to Milt,” Peavy said. “I’ve got to make an adjustment there. I’d like to have that pitch back.”
Harden (4-1) retired 13 in a row after Gonzalez’s two-run homer in the first. He gave up two runs on four hits in six innings. He struck out five and walked one. Aaron Heilman(notes), Carlos Marmol(notes) and Kevin Gregg(notes) pitched three scoreless innings.
“The big thing for me is just keeping my walks down,” Harden said. “If I can stop giving away free passes, it helps me a lot.”
“We couldn’t muster anything past the first inning,” Padres manager Bud Black said. “We got three singles after that.”
Padres 2B David Eckstein(notes) was in the lineup after getting hit in the ribs by Houston’s Roy Oswalt(notes) on Sunday. Eckstein was a gametime decision. … The Padres are 6-17 since Peavy’s last win. … Lee returned to the lineup after missing five games with a bulging disc in his neck. He struck out three times, with a walk. … Cubs injured RHP Carlos Zambrano(notes) will test his strained left hamstring in a rehab start this weekend in Clearwater, Fla. He could return to the rotation on May 22 in San Diego. … Padres RHP Cha Seung Baek’s(notes) rehab will go on indefinitely after he injured his elbow pitching in the minors Saturday. Baek’s MRI came back negative but San Diego manager Bud Black said Baek won’t be throwing anytime soon.