Padres Roll 11 in 12th
Even when things don’t work out for the San Diego Padres, they work out.
For the Dodgers, nothing works.
Damian Jackson couldn’t get a sacrifice bunt down in the 12th inning Tuesday night, so he singled to left field to give the Padres a 4-3 victory over the Dodgers before 36,398 at Qualcomm Stadium.
It was the Padres’ 11th victory in a row, tying the franchise record set in 1982 and matched last year as they won the National League pennant.
The Padres, who overcame a 3-0 deficit, beat the Dodgers for the fifth consecutive time this season, including a three-game sweep at Dodger Stadium last week.
Ben Davis opened the 12th inning and reached on second baseman Craig Counsell’s error. Carlos Baerga walked and Jackson singled just inside the left-field foul line to end the game.
Mike Maddux (0-1) was the loser.
The game was almost over three innings earlier, but somehow, the Dodgers overcame their shoddy play defensively and escaped the ninth inning despite the Padres having the bases loaded and none out.
Gary Sheffield started a double play when he caught a ball hit by Reggie Sanders in shallow left field, slipped, got up and threw to third baseman Adrian Beltre, whose relay throw to catcher Todd Hundley nailed Woody Williams, who was running from third. Ruben Rivera then flied out to send the game into extra innings. The Padres also left the bases loaded in the 10th.
How bad have things gone for the Dodgers? Center fielder Rivera robbed the Dodgers of a potential go-ahead run in the ninth, taking a solo home run away from Eric Karros with a sensational catch against the wall.
And Rivera had entered the game in the eighth. But such are the breaks for the struggling team.
Many things have gone wrong for Dodger starter Ismael Valdes recently. Valdes began the game having lost in his previous five starts.
He worked seven solid innings, but it wasn’t surprising that he failed to preserve a 3-0 lead in the sixth.
In the sixth, Sanders smacked a leadoff triple over the head of center fielder Todd Hollandsworth.
With one out, the Padres cut the lead to 3-1 on a sacrifice fly by Wally Joyner. They pulled even in the seventh, opening the inning with three consecutive singles against Valdes.
Ashby helped himself with a run-scoring single. With none out and runners on first and second, Ashby faked a bunt attempt and singled through the hole at shortstop that opened when Jose Vizcaino broke to cover the third-base bag because Beltre charged in on Ashby’s fake.
San Diego tied the score at 3-3 on a groundout by Eric Owens. The appreciative crowd gave the Padres a standing ovation when the inning ended.
Valdes was removed for a pinch hitter in the eighth inning of another wasted effort. He had his 10th quality start of the season--but nothing to show for his work.
Hundley staked Valdes to a 2-0 lead in the first with a two-run homer. Leadoff batter Eric Young singled to open the game against Ashby with Hundley on deck.
Hundley has batted second since being reinstated as the No. 1 catcher because Manager Davey Johnson figures teams will be reluctant to pitch around him with Sheffield batting third.
Hundley has been getting good pitches. He rediscovered his batting stroke while tormenting the San Francisco Giants during a three-game series in Northern California. He had three homers in 12 at-bats in the series and drove in six runs.
On Tuesday, Ashby threw Hundley another good pitch in the first. Hundley blasted his 11th homer to left field on a 1-and-1 count. The Dodgers added another run in the sixth when Young singled, stole two bases and scored on a passed ball by catcher Ben Davis.
Valdes has had only three leads to work with during his difficult stretch. For a change, Hundley provided an early advantage for Valdes.
Typically, though, the Dodgers found a way to waste things.