Jeff Smith 11:59 p.m., Feb. 8
After losing the first two games of the three-game series against the Giants, the Padres got an excellent pitching performance from Jason Marquis while Jesus Guzman socked a pair of homers as San Diego salvaged the third game on Wednesday and beat the Giants 6-3. The Padres beat the slumping Tim Lincecum in the process, pushing the former Cy Young Award winner's record to 4-11 this season.
The Padres got on the board early, when with two outs in the top of the first inning, Chase Headley homered over the center field wall. It was Headley's twelfth home run or the season, and the Padres led 1-0 before the Giants came to bat.
In the bottom of the first inning, the Giants got the run back. Gregor Blanco opened the frame with a single to right field, and then stole second base. Ryan Theriot laid down a sacrifice bunt to move Blanco to third, and then Melky Cabrera hit a sacrifice fly to left and Blanco tagged and scored. Jason Marquis then settled in and the score remained tied at 1-1 until the fourth inning.
In the top of the fourth with one out, Jesus Guzman singled to left and John Baker singled to right field, putting Guzman at third base. Lincecum walked Everth Cabrera to load the bases. After Jason Marquis struck out, Will Venable laced a two-out double to left field, scoring Guzman and Baker, and the Padres led 3-1.
The Padres kept it up in the very next inning. With one out, Carlos Quentin singled to center field, and after Yonder Alonso flied out, Jesus Guzman belted a 2-run home run into the left field seats, and the Padres led 5-1. It was Guzman's fifth home run of the season.
As Jason Marquis continued to mow down Giants hitters, the Padres got another run in the top of the eighth inning, when Jesus Guzman hit another home run to left field, this one a solo shot, and the Padres led the Giants 6-1. In the bottom of the eighth inning, Marquis finally ran out of gas.
Brandon Belt reached second base on a throwing error by Everth Cabrera to open the frame, and Joaquin Arias hit an infield single, putting Belt at third base. Jason Marquis then uncorked a wild pitch, scoring Belt and putting Arias at second base.
Eli Whiteside then hit a ball to short stop, Everth Cabrera opting to force Arias at third base. That was all for Marquis, with manager Buddy Black going to the bull pen and putting in Joe Thatcher in relief.
Nate Schierholtz singled to left, Whiteside taking second base, and Gregor Blanco hit into a force play, Schierholtz out at second base while moving Whiteside to third. Black again went to the bull pen and brought in Luke Gregerson with two outs.
Ryan Theriot then singled to right field, Whiteside scoring. Black then brought in closer Huston Street with two outs in the eighth, and Street struck out Melky Cabrera to end the inning, the Padres now leading 6-3.
Street then closed out the bottom of the ninth inning, allowing only a double to Brandon Belt. It was Street's 17th save of the season, in as many attempts. Jason Marquis got the win, and improves to 6-9 on the year.
Tim Stauffer (elbow) threw his second bull pen session in three day before the game on Wednesday and reported no issues. Stauffer will now go to Peoria for more bull pen work to strengthen his arm and will likely appear in an Arizona Rookie League game there, before continuing to rehab in the minor leagues.
Both Alexi Amarista (thumb) and Cameron Maybin (wrist) appeared in Wednesday's game for defensive purposes. With Amarista, it's a good sign that his thumb is feeling better, and in Maybin's case, he continues to report improvement. Both players are expected to be ready in the next series.
After enjoying Thursday off, the Padres will face the Miami Marlins on Friday for the first game of a three-game series. The first game will feature Kip Wells (1-3, 4.00) for the Padres, going up against the Marlins' Carlos Zambrano (5-8, 4.42). Game time is 4:10 PDST, carried on television by Fox Sports San Diego, radio coverage on XX 1090 AM. Time Warner cable customers, as usual, are screwed unless they prefer radio broadcasts, and we don't even know anyone with AT&T U-verse, which also feels that the Padres are irrelevant. Sad, sad, sad.