Southpaws Joe Saunders and Cory Luebke went toe-to-toe yesterday afternoon at San Diego's sprawling Petco Park, giving up but one run between them in 12 combined innings of work.
|D-Backs hope to win series against Pads tonight|
Saunders, who was starting his first game of the new season for the Arizona Diamondbacks', turned things over to set-up man Daniel Hernandez in the 8th inning after fairly breezing through seven shutout innings.
That's when bad things happened.
Little-known Padres' outfielder Chris Denorfia hit a two-run homer just outside the long reach of Arizona's Chris Young to give his team a 2-1 lead, and one inning later, a win by the same score.
It was the D-Backs' first loss of the season after a 4-0 start, and was a tough way to go.
Saunders' performance was the story of the day until the 400-foot blast stole a win from him and his team.
Lost in the late-inning dramatics was a telling stat: Arizona left eleven men on base to San Diego's five in the contest. In the first inning, for example, which was the only frame in which the D-Backs scored, Paul Goldschmidt struck out swinging to end the inning.
Goldschmidt also lined out to the pitcher in the fifth with two men on to end that mini-threat.
Such is life in a 162-game season, and Arizona won't have much time to reflect on what could have been a 5-0 start.
The two NL West teams finish up their series tonight at Petco, with D-Backs ace Ian Kennedy looking for his second win of the young season.
Game will be broadcast on Channel 34 (KSAZ) and on KTAR-AM, 620 on the dial.