Pollock powers D-backs past Padres
PHOENIX -- A three-run homer by A.J. Pollock keyed a five-run seventh-inning rally as the D-backs beat the Padres, 6-4, on Tuesday night at Chase Field.
San Diego grabbed an early lead on Justin Upton's 26th homer of the season and led, 3-1, after Travis Jankowski delivered a two-out, run-scoring single in the seventh.
The D-backs offense, which had been held in check by starter Tyson Ross, finally came alive in the seventh off the San Diego bullpen. Right-hander Bud Norris opened the inning by walking Chris Owings, allowing a triple to Nick Ahmed and then walking pinch-hitter Aaron Hill. Padres manager Pat Murphy brought in Kevin Quackenbush, who allowed Pollock's home run on his first pitch.
"Ross had nasty stuff tonight," D-backs manager Chip Hale said. "As usual. He's got that slider guys just don't see. The guys kept at it, the attitude was good on the bench, and the one thing I kept harping on was you could see his pitch count was rising, and we knew at some point we would get him out of the game."
MOMENTS THAT MATTERED
J-Up continues to unload on D-backs: As a Brave and now as a Padre, Upton has continued to destroy his old team, which traded him before the 2013 season. Upton homered to open the second inning, a prodigus 458-foot shot deep into the left field seats. It was his eighth homer against the D-backs and fourth at Chase. Five of them have come this season as a member of the Padres.
"There's times when Justin looks like he's destined for the Hall of Fame, the way he swings," Padres manager Pat Murphy said. "He's got great abilities. When he plays the way he played tonight you start believing that, wow, this guy's a real super player. That ball he hit tonight, he crushed. And then he followed it up with some great at bats after that."
Pollock in the clutch: Having lost three straight heading into Tuesday night, the D-backs were desperate for a spark, and they got one from Pollock. After missing scoring opportunities earlier in the game, Pollock made sure they fully capitalized in the seventh, hitting a three-run homer off Quackenbush.
"That first pitch for sure I was looking for a fastball that I could get in the air to the outfield," Pollock said. "I just didn't want to be too late on him. I wanted to make sure I took a nice, aggressive swing on it, and it worked out."
Ziggy gets it done: There were some anxious moments for the D-backs in the eighth as the Padres loaded the bases off Daniel Hudson with two outs. Hale went to closer Brad Ziegler for the four-out save and -- after a wild pitch allowed a run to score -- Ziegler slammed the door to earn his 26th save.
"Unfortunately with the struggles we've had lately just winning games, I've had a lot of days off, so they feel like I'm fresh enough to do that," Ziegler said of pitching more than one inning.
Padres combust in the seventh: Four relievers couldn't hold a 3-1 lead. Two of them -- Norris and Quackenbush -- faced six batters and didn't record an out. They combined to allow five runs on three hits and three walks, including Pollock's three-run homer.
YOU'RE OUT OF HERE
Murphy was ejected for the fifth time this season -- a high total considering that he took over for Bud Black on June 16. He was tossed in the eighth inning from the dugout by plate umpire Alfonso Marquez, with pinch-hitter Brett Wallace at the plate. Murphy then got his money's worth by taking up his case with Marquez behind the plate.
UPON FURTHER REVIEW
Pollock led off the D-backs first with a walk and was called out on an attempted steal of second base when second base umpire Dan Bellino ruled that he came off the bag during his slide. The D-backs challenged the call, and upon replay review, it was determined that Pollock maintained contact with the base, and the call was overturned.
Then in the seventh, Ender Inciarte stole second with no one out and Paul Goldschmidt at the plate. Bellino called him safe. Murphy asked for a review and after a two-minute delay, the call stood.
Padres: The Padres play for the final time this season at Chase Field in a 6:40 p.m. PT start. Right-hander Andrew Cashner (5-15, 4.27) is slated to be on the bump, facing the D-backs for the fifth time. He's 1-3 with a 2.63 ERA against them.
D-backs: The D-backs wrap up their three-game series with the Padres and nine-game homestand on Wednesday night with left-hander Robbie Ray on the mound. Ray is 1-1 with a 1.72 ERA over his last three starts.
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