Padres-DBacks: Rally Falls Just Short, Padres Lose 6-5

Todd KaufmannSenior Writer IMay 27, 2009

DENVER - APRIL 29:  Chris Burke #8 of the San Diego Padres pinch hits against the Colorado Rockies during MLB action at Coors Field on April 29, 2009 in Denver, Colorado. The Rockies defeated the Padres 7-5.  (Photo by Doug Pensinger/Getty Images)

Baseball has always been a game of inches, and never was that more true than on Tuesday night in Phoenix.

Down 6-5 in the ninth inning with two outs, Kevin Kouzmanoff drove a ball to deep right center field that looked like it was going to get out of the ballpark, but outfielder Chris Young pulled it down against the wall, preserving a 6-5 Arizona victory over the Padres, and ending San Diego's 10-game win streak.

San Diego put themselves in a 6-0 hole through seven innings, as starter Kevin Correia had an outing he'd rather forget. Correia gave up six runs on nine hits, striking out five and walking one through just five-and-one-third innings, one of his worst starts of the season.

Just when it looked like Arizona might have an easy time with the Padres, the San Diego bats came alive in the eighth inning.

Short stop Chris Burke led off the inning with a solo home run to left, his first of the season, and the Padres would eventually load the bases. Kevin Kouzmanoff would be hit by a pitch, forcing in the Padres' second run of the game, followed by an RBI single from Chase Headley, then a wild pitch would score Scott Hairston to pull San Diego to within two6-4.

In the ninth, things would get even more interesting as the Padres would once again load the bases. Scott Hairston would come to the plate with no one out, but would ground into a 5-4-3 double play, scoring Tony Gwynn Jr, pulling the Padres to within one6-5.

Kevin Kouzmanoff then came to the plate and drove a fastball from Arizona reliever Juan Gutierrez and it had some Arizona fans going through deja vu, because one night earlier, Chase Headley had driven a home run to the same spot that ended up being the difference in the game. This time, outfielder Chris Young ran it down on the warning track, making the catch before slamming into the wall, ending the game and bringing the Padres rally just short of another amazing come-from-behind victory.

Arizona starter Max Scherzer threw seven shutout innings, striking out 10, and helping himself offensively, as Scherzer drove in two of Arizona's six runs including an RBI double in the fifth that got them on the board. Scherzer would give up two runs in the eighth without recording an out and then would be pulled in favor of reliever Doug Slaten.

Adrian Gonzalez was a late scratch for the Padres, suffering from flu like symptoms but would make a pinch hit appearance in the eighth inning and he also narrowly missed a home run. “I just missed it,” Gonzalez told the Associated Press. “It was a good pitch to hit. It’s a game of inches. One inch more on top of the ball and it’s a home run.”

The two teams will finish out their three-game set tonight from Phoenix, AZ. and the Padres have the right man on the mound for a series win. San Diego ace Jake Peavy (4-5, 3.48) will take the ball for the Padres opposite Arizona right-hander Billy Bucker (1-0, 6.35) (no, not that Bill Bucker), who will make just his second start of the season.


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