One Run Is Still Good Enough--Padres beat Dodgers, 4-3

Times Staff Writer

The Dodgers and Padres, never more than a run apart in four games last week, stayed in close contact again Monday night.

Pinch-hitter Bruce Bochy’s home run off Ed Vande Berg leading off the bottom of the 11th finally won it for San Diego, 4-3, before a crowd of 25,432 in Jack Murphy Stadium.

It was a record eighth straight one-run game for both teams.

Dodger pitcher Bob Welch pitched longer than he has in his career, 9 innings, and seldom has pitched better, striking out a career-high 12 batters.

But because of shoddy outfield play by Ken Landreaux, who had just entered the game as a defensive replacement, Welch could do no better than a tie when he left.

Mariano Duncan’s home run had given the Dodgers a 3-2 lead in the top of the 10th, but a two-base error by Landreaux in left and John Kruk’s RBI single, Kruk’s first big-league hit, tied the score in the bottom of the inning.

The Padres forced extra innings by turning two Dodger hits into a double play in the ninth. Steve Sax, who had three hits, doubled off Lance McCullers to open the ninth.

Mike Scioscia then followed by lining a single just off the line in right. But Padre right-fielder Tony Gwynn charged the ball, backhanded it and in one motion fired to the plate. Sax, running on a sore right heel, pulled up lame and was tagged out at the plate by catcher Terry Kennedy for one out.

Kennedy then fired down to second, where Scioscia was tagged out in a rundown.

Welch, who gave up a solo home run to Steve Garvey that tied the score, 2-2, in the sixth, saved some of his best pitching for the late innings.

Welch, who threw 149 pitches, struck out Garvey and Terry Kennedy in the eighth with Tony Gwynn on third. Gwynn had singled and reached third when his ball went through the legs of center-fielder Cesar Cedeno .

In the ninth, after a walk to Graig Nettles and a sacrifice, Welch struck out Dane Iorg and retired Marvell Wynne on a fly to left.

But he couldn’t survive Landreaux’s error on Gwynn’s ball down the left field line that glanced off his glove and bounced into the Dodger bullpen.

Welch, who shut out the Padres, 1-0, on three hits in his first start last Wednesday, may have been even tougher Monday.

At least he was for Gwynn, who struck out three times in a game for the first time in 460 big-league games.

Gwynn, who won the batting title with a .351 average in 1984, fanned just 33 times in 622 at-bats last season, when he hit .317.

Welch had nine strikeouts through the first seven innings, while walking just one.

After 13 scoreless innings, however, the Padres finally broke through in the fifth. Tim Flannery, the No. 8 hitter, hit a line drive to left that fell in between left-fielder Bill Russell--who was playing the left-handed hitting Flannery near the line--and Cedeno, who made a long run from center but could not reach the ball in time.

Flannery wound up on second with a double, was sacrificed to third by Mark Thurmond and scored on Wynne’s fly to Cedeno.

The Dodgers had taken a 1-0 lead in the third, when Sax--the only Dodger to be hitting for average in the first week (.346)--singled to center, the first of his three hits.

Mike Scioscia walked, Welch sacrificed and Sax scored on Duncan’s infield out.

In the sixth, Russell singled and was picked off first by Thurmond. Russell headed for second, and although Garvey’s throw appeared to have beaten Russell to the bag, shortstop Garry Templeton did not apply the tag quickly enough to retire the runner.

One out later, Cedeno hit a smash down the third-base line that Nettles grabbed staggering into foul territory. His off-balance throw, however, bounced past Garvey and Russell scored.

But after Kevin McReynolds struck out leading off the sixth, Garvey hit Welch’s first pitch over the wall in left, tying the score again.

Dodger Notes Even though Franklin Stubbs had home runs in each of his last three games, Manager Tom Lasorda sat him down against Padre left-hander Mark Thurmond. Bill Russell played left and Cesar Cedeno (in lieu of Ken Landreaux) was in center. Lasorda said he was tempted to keep Stubbs in the lineup. “But I don’t want to do that to him. I want to play Cedeno and Russell.” On Sunday, after Stubbs’ third home run, ninth RBI and ninth strikeout in 18 at-bats, Lasorda had said: “A home run hitter is going to strike out a lot, anyway. Look at Babe Ruth and Reggie Jackson. Look at Mike Marshall. He struck out a lot last year and still hit 28 home runs. Stubbs is going to strike out a lot, but he’s going to improve. He’s got awesome power to any field. He can hit 30, 35 home runs in this league.” . . . Dodger catcher Mike Scioscia, who was involved in five tag plays at the plate in the first seven games--in each case, the runner was out--said he can’t recall having three collisions like he had in the Giant series happen one after another. Scioscia took shots from Chris Brown (Friday), Candy Maldonado (Friday) and Chili Davis (Sunday) and held his ground-and the ball--each time. “I’m not really into collisions,” Scioscia said. “The odds on five plays like that are so great. You have to have a great situation for the runner, and the outfielder charging the ball and making a great throw.” Asked if he had a signal to let his wife, Ann, know he was OK after a collision, Scioscia said: “She knows when I’m carried off the field on a stretcher that I’m hurt and when I stay in the game, I’m all right.”