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Hundley's homer paces Padres' victory

The SportsXchange

SAN DIEGO - Nick Hundley provided a much needed boost to the San Diego Padres' woeful offense.

Hundley hit a three-run homer and the Padres scored for the first time in three games on their way to a 4-1 victory over the Arizona Diamondbacks on Monday before an announced crowd of 15,869 at Petco Park.

The Padres (73-83) beat the Diamondbacks (79-77) for the fifth straight time at Petco. They also scored for the first time since a 2-0 win Friday over the Los Angeles Dodgers, who blanked the Padres on Saturday and Sunday.

Hundley connected off Arizona starter Brandon McCarthy for his career-high 12th home run, breaking a 1-1 tie in the sixth inning. Hundley wasn't sure if his homer would stay fair. It started curving toward the left-field foul line after it left his bat before landing just fair and bouncing off the second level of the Western Metal Supply building.

"I watched it about halfway there, and I thought it was going to be foul for sure," said Hundley, who also has a career best in RBIs with 43. "Fortunately, it stayed true. But right when I hit it I thought it was a homer. About halfway through its life, I thought it was foul. I'm pretty ecstatic about it.

"(McCarthy) has thrown good against us all year. Working both sides of the plate, staying off the barrel. Against the Dodgers, we were one big hit away from winning a couple of those games. Fortunately, we got it tonight."

McCarthy (5-10) allowed four runs on eight hits in six innings. He struck out two and walked none, throwing 89 pitches (64 strikes).

"I felt good but I made a couple of mistakes, including the one to Hundley, and it cost us," McCarthy said. "It's 0-1 and I'm throwing a breaking ball there to try and set up something else. It's a bad pitch."

Padres starter Eric Stults gave up a run and scattered seven hits with five strikeouts and two walks in 6 2/3 innings. He threw 116 pitches (74 strikes). It was the second consecutive win for Stults (10-13), who snapped a 10-game winless streak by beating the Pittsburgh Pirates in his last outing on Sept. 17.

In facing the Diamondbacks for the fourth time this season, Stults said he knew he needed to change things up, so he used his slider more.

"It's tough when you see a team a lot and they've seen you a lot," said Stults, who is 2-2 this season and 5-4 in his career against Arizona. "They know your tendencies, they know what your pitches do and what pitches you like to throw. Tonight we didn't deviate a whole lot except we changed our approach to how many sliders I threw. It seemed to work against these guys."

San Diego closer Huston Street retired the side in order in the ninth for his 33rd save in 34 chances.

Padres shortstop Ronny Cedeno was hit in the head by a pitch from reliever Heath Bell with two outs in the seventh inning. Cedeno left the game, but the extent of his injury was unknown. Padres manager Bud Black said after the game that Cedeno was "woozy" and would be evaluated over the next 24 hours.

"He's got a little bit of a headache. He hit him pretty square," Black said. "We'll continue to monitor him overnight."

In the eighth, Luke Gregerson of the Padres threw an inside pitch that missed second baseman Aaron Hill, causing home plate umpire Hunter Wendelstedt to warn both benches.

Chase Headley's RBI single to center scored Chris Denorfia for a 1-0 lead with two outs in the first, ending the Padres' 21-inning scoreless string. Denorfia led off with a hit and advanced to second on a groundout.

The Diamondbacks opened the second with consecutive singles by Matt Davidson, Wil Nieves and Cliff Pennington to load the bases. After McCarthy struck out, Davidson came home on a fielder's choice by Adam Eaton to tie the score.

It stayed that way until Hundley crushed McCarthy's breaking ball to cap the scoring.

NOTES: Arizona 1B Paul Goldschmidt extended his hitting streak to 13 games with a first-inning double. ... A single in the fifth inning allowed Eaton to extend his hitting streak to 10 games. ... Padres OF Will Venable was out of the starting lineup due to an abdominal injury. Venable has been ailing for the past couple of weeks, Black said. His return is unknown.
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