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Padres: Bad Day, Worse Night

From Associated Press

After losing six games in a row at home, including a late-inning blowout against Cincinnati the night before, the last thing the Padres needed was plane trouble on the way out of San Diego.

Or extra innings Thursday night at Chicago.

But that’s the way things have been going lately for the Padres, whose flight was delayed for five hours because an inflatable slide on the plane malfunctioned.

And the Padres’ slide in the National League West continued to seven losses in a row when Terry Shumpert hit a three-run homer in the 14th inning for a 6-3 Cub victory.

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The Padres didn’t arrive in Chicago until noon, local time, and that might have been the best part of their day.

“This has been a tough 24 hours for us,” San Diego Manager Bruce Bochy said. “After not getting in until noontime today, I’m very proud of my team for giving its all in 14 innings on just four hours sleep.”

The Cubs put San Diego to sleep in the 14th when Jose Hernandez opened the inning with a single off Willie Blair (0-4) and moved to second base on a sacrifice by Doug Glanville. After Brian McRae was intentionally walked, Mike Hubbard grounded out to second. McRae reached second safely after being caught in a rundown when first baseman Archi Cianfrocco threw to third to try to get Hernandez off the bag.

Shumpert, who came on as a defensive replacement, then hit his first National League homer on a 0-and-2 pitch.

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"[Blair] made me look bad on the first two pitches,” Shumpert said. “He threw me two sliders that I couldn’t catch up with. When he threw me the third one, I got my bat through the strike zone and luckily hit it out.”

Said Blair: “I thought I had him pretty well set up. He couldn’t catch up with my slider, then I hung one and he took care of the rest.”

Florida 4, Pittsburgh 3--After a 7-1 swing through Los Angeles, San Diego and San Francisco, the Pirates returned home and ran into Devon White, whose two-run single beat them in the ninth inning.

White had also singled in a run in the eighth for the Marlins, who were 0-38 when behind after eighth innings.

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Pittsburgh’s five-game winning streak was snapped, predictably enough at home, where its 12-20 record is the worst in the National League.

New York 2, St. Louis 1--The Mets’ Robert Person, a St. Louis native called back up from the minors earlier in the day, gave up only three hits over seven innings in his hometown, where the Mets got home runs from Todd Hundley and Jeff Kent on consecutive at-bats.

The Mets have won five of seven and the Cardinals have lost four of five. St. Louis has scored three runs in the four losses.

Hundley led off the seventh inning with his 17th homer and Kent followed with his sixth on a 2-and-0 pitch by Benes (3-8).

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San Francisco 12, Houston 8--Barry Bonds had four hits, including his first home run in more than a month, to lead the Giants, who scored six runs in the first inning but almost blew a 9-0 lead at San Francisco.

Bonds’ homer, a two-run shot in the eighth inning, was his first since May 11 and ended a streak of 102 at-bats without a homer, longest of his career. The previous longest was 92, in 1989.

Colorado 4, Philadelphia 1--John Vander Wal hit a two-run homer and drove in three runs at Denver, where Bryan Rekar continued his mastery of the Phillies.

Rekar, returning to the Rockies on Monday after a six weeks at triple-A Colorado Springs, handcuffed the Phillies on four hits through eight innings. At one point, Rekar (2-2) retired 13 batters in a row.

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