PHOENIX (AP) — The San Diego Padres have little to play for as the season winds down, but Saturday will certainly be a game they remember from 2017.
The Padres overcame a five-run deficit in the ninth inning to stun the Arizona Diamondbacks 8-7, with youngster Carlos Asuaje delivering the key hit.
Asuaje’s single drove in the tying run, and an error by Arizona left fielder David Peralta allowed the go-ahead run to score.
“I can’t say enough about the guys before me that set up that situation,” Asuaje said. “I was fortunate enough to get a pitch, and do what I intended to on it.”
The five-run comeback was the largest this season for San Diego, and marked the first time the Padres scored six runs in an inning since April 2016 at Colorado.
After trailing 6-0 in the seventh inning and 7-2 in the ninth, San Diego surged ahead, sparked by Wil Myers’ second two-run homer of the game.
“That was really cool, especially to come back on a team that’s as good as they are, as hot as they’ve been,” Myers said.
Arizona nearly came back in the bottom of the ninth, putting runners at the corners against Brad Hand when Jake Lamb walked and J.D. Martinez singled with one out, his fourth hit.
A.J. Pollock flied out to short left, Adam Rosales loaded the bases when he was hit by a pitch and Hand struck out Ketel Marte on a 96 mph fastball that was high and outside, earning his 17th save in 22 chances.
Arizona, which began the night with a six-game lead for the NL’s top wild card, lost its second straight following a team-record 13-game winning streak.
“Fun one to come back and steal from them, and you knew they were going to come back in the ninth inning, because that’s what they do,” Padres manager Andy Green said.
Myers’ homer off Andrew Chafin cut the Padres’ deficit to 7-4. Fernando Rodney (4-4) relieved and struck out Cory Spangenberg, then walked Jabari Blash and threw a wild pitch. Austin Hedges hit an RBI double and scored on a single by pinch-hitter Erick Aybar, and Manuel Margot singled.
Asuaje sliced an opposite-field single to left, the fifth straight batter to reach against Rodney. Aybar scored, and when Peralta allowed the ball to bounce past him and go all the way to the fence, Margot raced home.
Diamondbacks manager Torey Lovullo was asked about his decision to stick with Rodney, among other choices he made on the night.
“I will replay it all night long. I believe in the decisions I made,” Lovullo said. “There were some reasons and a strategy that I followed and it just didn’t work out.”
Phil Maton (3-0) won despite allowing Peralta’s RBI single in the eighth.
Diamondbacks starter Zack Godley held the Padres scoreless until the seventh inning. Godley gave up a hit leading off the game, then retired 19 of his next 20 batters – Luis Torrens reached on a wild pitch while striking out in the sixth.
San Diego trailed 6-0 before Myers homered in the seventh. Godley allowed four hits in seven innings, striking out nine.
“I felt in command. I made a couple of mistakes in the seventh and those guys made me pay for it,” Godley said.
Peralta had three RBIs out of the leadoff spot. Paul Goldschmidt went 1 for 5 with an RBI in his return after missing five games because of right elbow tightness.
Padres starter Jhoulys Chacin allowed four runs and seven hits in five innings.
Arizona built a 4-0 lead in the fifth on Peralta’s two-run single and RBI singles by Goldschmidt and Martinez. Daniel Descalso homered off Miguel Diaz leading off the sixth and Chris Iannetta hit an RBI single.
Arizona recalled LHP Anthony Banda, OF Jeremy Hazelbaker and INF Ildemaro Vargas from Triple-A Reno, increasing their active roster to 34. Banda has made four starts for the Diamondbacks this season. Hazelbaker made the opening-day roster and Vargas played in two games.
MEXICAN BASEBALL HONORED
On the Diamondbacks’ annual Hispanic Heritage Day, the team wore black “Los D-backs” jerseys and recognized the franchises of the Mexican Pacific League, which were represented by team mascots.
Diamondbacks: RHP Randall Delgado may miss the rest of the season with a flexor strain in his pitching arm. He felt discomfort after pitching on Wednesday. A decision on Delgado is pending evaluation of his MRI by Dr. James Andrews next week.
RHP Luis Perdomo (7-9) starts Sunday for San Diego and LHP Robbie Ray (12-5) for Arizona. Ray is 3-0 with a 0.93 ERA in his last three starts, striking out 33 and walking four over 19 1/3 innings.
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