Cashner's start: 'It was a weird one'
Padres pitcher strikes out career-best 12, also allows 11 hits in only 4 2/3
SAN DIEGO -- While the pitching line Andrew Cashner put together rated as historically unique on Monday -- and not necessarily in a good way -- the means by which he got there certainly looked a little familiar to his manager.
"Tonight was sort of, in some ways, a microcosm of his season," Padres manager Bud Black said of Cashner's start at Petco Park against the Mets. "Limited run support when he pitches and we made an error early."
Cashner fell to 2-8 as he allowed five earned runs in 4 2/3 innings, allowing 11 hits to go with a career-high 12 strikeouts as the Padres fell to the Mets, 7-0, in the first game of a three-game series.
In terms of hit-and-miss stuff, Cashner had exactly that.
While Jacob deGrom of the Mets was dealing on the other side, taking a perfect game into the sixth inning before Clint Barmes singled, Cashner was experiencing an entirely different kind of start.
• Cashner became the first Major League pitcher to finish with double-digits in strikeouts and hits allowed in a start of less than five innings.
• He is the first pitcher since Curt Schilling in 2001 to have 12 or more strikeouts in a start, allow 10 or more hits and six or more runs.
• He is also the first pitcher in the modern era to strike out at least 12, not issue a walk and not complete five innings, according to the Elias Sports Bureau.
"It was a weird one," Cashner admitted afterward. "I thought I had some of the best stuff I've had this season. Some balls just fell in. I think the main mistake was the home run on a hanging slider."
Trailing 2-0 in the fifth inning, Cashner allowed a two-run home run to Daniel Murphy, who had four hits in the game. Cashner couldn't get the elusive final out, allowing four runs in the inning.
"I just couldn't stop it after that [home run]," he said.
Cashner's ERA went from 3.00 to 3.46 in what has been a hard-luck season. In seven of his 11 starts, he's received one or fewer runs of offensive support.
And the Padres haven't always played sound defense behind him. A first-inning error by third baseman Will Middlebrooks led to an unearned run, the 13th unearned run he's allowed this season.
If any of this has bothered Cashner, he certainly hasn't let on. He's tried to maintain an even keel regardless of how many runs his teammates score for him or what the defense does behind him.
"This game, if you take a step back and feel sorry for yourself, that's when things get going [in the wrong direction]," he said. "You've got to keep the mindset that the next pitch is the next pitch."