Diamondbacks 12, Padres 3
PHOENIX, Aug. 12 —The Arizona Diamondbacks slugged 14 hits en route to a 12–3 victory over the San Diego Padres Thursday night. Caleb Smith, relieving for emergency opener Matt Peacock, scattered four hits and a walk across 5 1/3 innings while allowing an unearned run and striking out five.
Diamondbacks shortstop Josh Rojas and catcher Carson Kelly each went 4-for-5 with two RBI, with Rojas scoring two runs and Kelly scoring one. Right fielder Pavin Smith added three hits and four RBI of his own. They were not the only players to have success at the plate, however, as every Diamondback who batted reached base at least once.
Padres Open Scoring against Diamondbacks
Padres left fielder Tommy Pham opened the game with a double, a rocket to the gap in left-center. Second baseman Adam Frazier, up next, one-upped Pham with a missile to right-center. It reached the wall in the corner, 413 feet away, for a stand-up RBI triple. After third baseman Manny Machado struck out, shortstop Jake Cronenworth lined an RBI single to right, making the score 2–0. Peacock got out of the jam without further damage when first baseman Eric Hosmer followed with a 4–6–3 double play groundout.
Padres starting pitcher Yu Darvish pitched himself out of a jam in the first. A leadoff single by shortstop Josh Rojas and two-out single by catcher Carson Kelly put runners on the corners for left fielder David Peralta. Peralta, however, could not cash in, lining to right for the third out.
Diamondbacks Take Lead over Padres
The Diamondbacks threatened again in the third after a leadoff single by Caleb Smith, who relieved Peacock after 1 1/3 innings. Rojas walked, bringing up center fielder Ketel Marte. He chopped a ball near the plate and high in the air. Hosmer gathered the ball in time to make a lunging tag near first, getting Marte for the first out. On 2–1, he took a pitch inside, but plate umpire Dan Iassogna called it a strike. After Smith argued, he stepped back in the box and, two pitches later, lined a game-tying double to right. One pitch later, Kelly plated Smith with a single to right. Six pitches after that, Darvish hung a splitter to Peralta and paid dearly. Peralta launched a drive into the pool in right-center for a two-run homer, giving the Diamondbacks a 5–2 lead.
Darvish left the game with lower back pain after the first pitch to second baseman Josh VanMeter with two outs in the third. Matt Strahm relieved him and struck VanMeter out on three pitches, ending the inning.
The Rout Is On
The Diamondbacks blew it open in the fourth. Rookie third baseman Drew Ellis led off with a single. Caleb Smith tried to bunt him to second, but a quick play and strong throw by Machado cut Ellis down at second. A double by Rojas against the shift put runners on second and third with one out. Strahm walked Marte intentionally to load the bases for Pavin Smith, whose Texas leaguer to shallow left brought home both Caleb Smith and Rojas to give the Diamondbacks a 7–2 lead. A double off the left-field wall by Kelly scored Marte from third, making the score 8–2.
The Padres made it 8–3 in the top of the sixth thanks to an unearned run. Machado hit the first pitch of the inning deep to center. Marte ran it down but muffed it. The error put Machado on second with one out. A single by Cronenworth advanced Machado to third. Machado scored when Hosmer grounded into a 4–6 force play. Myers followed with a rocket toward first. Walker plucked it out of the air and tagged Hosmer before he could dive back to first, ending the frame with a line drive double play.
In the bottom of the seventh, the Diamondbacks piled on. They took advantage of reliever Austin Adams’ control problems. Peralta led the frame off with a called strikeout before Walker earned a free pass. VanMeter advanced Walker with a grounder to first. A hit batsman — Ellis — and a walk by pinch-hitter Daulton Varsho loaded the bases. This brought the hook from Padres manager Jayce Tingler, who summoned Craig Stammen to clean up the mess. Rojas welcomed Stammen to the game with a two-run single, running the score to 10–3.
The score became 11–3 in the bottom of the eighth off sidearmer Tim Hill. Kelly got things rolling with a one-out single, his career-high fourth hit of the game. Peralta took his place at first after grounding into a 5–4 force play. A walk by Walker advanced Peralta to second, and a single by VanMeter scored him. Ellis also walked, loading the bases for pinch-hitter Jake Hager. He also walked, bringing in Walker and making the score 12–3.
Rojas dug in, looking for his fifth hit. The first pitch came near his head, forcing him to bail out. Rojas took some time calming down, standing out of the box the whole time. Hill yelled at Rojas to get back in the box, to which Rojas responded, “Throw it over the plate!” while pointing toward home. This brought the Padres defenders in around their pitcher, with catcher Victor Caratini getting in front of Rojas.
Cooler Heads Prevail
Diamondbacks manager Torey Lovullo came onto the field to settle Rojas down. “It’s my job to deescalate any situations like that,” Lovullo said. “I don’t want to see athletes go on the field from two different dugouts because you never know what could happen at that point. So my first thought was to get out there and separate (Rojas) and the catcher. It looked like the catcher made a move towards him, and he’s got a job to do. I just wanted to make sure that (Rojas and Caratini) were separated. Once I saw they were separated by the time I got out there, I wanted to refocus (Rojas) and make sure he was ready to finish the at-bat and finish a great day. He was having an amazing day. I (didn’t) want anything to distract him and get in the way of him having a perfect day.”
When the dust settled, Rojas lined to center for the third out. Jake Faria pitched a scoreless night to close out the victory.
Lovullo praised Caleb Smith after the game, saying, “I can’t say enough (about) what he did. He came in and took us deep into the ballgame. We had some unfortunate news that we had to deal with. The guys made some adjustments and picked one another up. Caleb was at the top of the list for giving us what he did and allowing us to win this baseball game. He was pounding the zone, and he gave us the chance to get that lead and keep extending that lead. Without him today, it wouldn’t have been the type of game that we had. Kudos to him.”
Caleb Smith left the mound to a standing ovation. Lovullo said, “Those are great moments. Every player likes that type of very positive attention. The fans that are here are so engaged. They know what was going on and appreciated the effort that he gave. It was great to see them acknowledge the effort.”
Caleb Smith (4–8) earned the win in relief, while Darvish (7–7) took the loss in his short outing. The Diamondbacks and Padres square off again Friday evening in the second game of their four-game series. Blake Snell (6–4, 4.86 ERA) and Madison Bumgarner (6–7, 4.42 ERA) — both lefties — will start for the Padres and Diamondbacks, respectively. First pitch will be at 6:40 pm Arizona time.
Caleb Smith, Matt Peacock, Josh Rojas, Carson Kelly, Pavin Smith, Tommy Pham, Adam Frazier, Manny Machado, Jake Cronenworth, Eric Hosmer, Yu Darvish, David Peralta, Ketel Marte, Josh VanMeter, Matt Strahm, Drew Ellis, Austin Adams, Daulton Varsho, Jayce Tingler, Craig Stammen, Tim Hill, Jake Hager, Victor Caratini, Torey Lovullo, Jake Faria, Blake Snell, Madison Bumgarner