SAN DIEGO (AP) — “Slam Diego” is back, and Mike Clevinger was the beneficiary en route to his first win with the Padres.
Wil Myers homered twice, including San Diego’s seventh grand slam of the season, Austin Nola hit a three-run shot and Clevinger was impressive in his home debut for the Padres, who routed the Colorado Rockies 14-5 Tuesday night.
Clevinger gave up a three-run home run to Nolan Arenado just four batters into the game, but the Padres got it all back, and more, in the bottom of the inning.
Clevinger even wore a “Slam Diego” headband during his postgame Zoom call with the media.
“That was probably the biggest part of my whole entire night, was after I leaked that pitch there to Arenado and he put it in the seats, and to look around and see not any shred of doubt on any face,” Clevinger said. “Nobody was down besides me because I made a bad pitch. Everybody was so stoked to go hit once we got back in, they were like, ‘OK, let’s go bang up.’ Before the game I even said, ‘We’re going to score two touchdowns tonight,’ just joking around and we did.”
The Padres once again showed their remarkable ability to bounce back from a deficit.
“We’ve just got a different group of guys. It’s a bunch of dogs that is waiting to eat at all times,” Clevinger said.
The Padres, cruising toward their first postseason appearance since 2006, won their third straight and for the seventh time in nine games.
Myers hit his slam in the five-run first inning and then homered leading off the seventh to match his single-game high of five RBIs. His 11th homer gave him his eighth career multi-homer game.
The Padres have hit six grand slams since Aug. 17. They were the first team in history to hit a grand slam in four straight games — with Myers hitting the second one — and then the first to hit five in six games.
The Padres scored five runs in each of the first two innings, highlighted by Myers’ slam with one out in the first. Starter Chi Chi González (0-1) lasted just five batters after walking the first three, striking out Mitch Moreland and then hitting Austin Nola to bring in a run.
Jose Mujica came on for his big league debut and on his second pitch gave up Myers’ slam into the home run porch in the right field corner. It was Myers’ 10th homer and second slam this season.
“To predict grand slams, that’s kind of a hard thing,” Myers said. “There’s a little bit of luck that goes into that, in situations. It just shows what this team is capable of doing. It’s a very explosive offense with a lot of great players in it. Up and down the lineup, one through nine, can really go out and do some damage. That’s really been the biggest factor this year.”
Clevinger (2-2) settled down after allowing Arenado’s three-run home run with one out in the third. The right-hander, obtained in a blockbuster deal with Cleveland just before the trade deadline, held the Rockies to four runs and five hits in five innings, struck out eight and walked one. He lost his Padres debut 2-0 at the Los Angeles Angels on Thursday.
After allowing Matt Kemp’s two-out single in the first, Clevinger retired the next 11 batters.
The Padres piled on in the second, with Manny Machado’s two-run double and Nola’s three-run homer, his second since being obtained by the Padres on Aug. 30 from the Seattle Mariners. Nola had four RBIs.
Arenado’s eighth homer reached the second deck in left field for a 3-0 lead.
González “just looked as though he was trying to throw strikes and just couldn’t,” manager Bud Black said. “Something was just missing. But it looked as though the arm was working fine. He had a normal velocity to his fastball, had normal movement to his secondary pitches. He could just not get the ball in the strike zone.”
Padres: Placed 1B Eric Hosmer on the 10-day IL with a broken left index finger and recalled OF Abraham Almonte from the alternate training site. Hosmer was injured while bunting with two strikes in the first inning Monday night. Manager Jayce Tingler said Hosmer won’t need surgery and his finger is in a split. Tingler said the recovery time could be two to three weeks. The regular season ends Sept. 27.
Rockies: RHP Antonio Senzatela (3-1, 3.33 ERA) is scheduled to start the series finale Wednesday night. He is 1-0 against the Padres in two starts this season.
Padres: RHP Zach Davies (6-2, 2.23) is scheduled make his ninth start for San Diego. He is 1-1 against the Rockies this season.
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