SAN DIEGO -- With the backing of early run support and two homers by Franchy Cordero, Padres left-hander Clayton Richard was phenomenal Tuesday, guiding San Diego past the Reds to a 6-2 victory.Richard held Cincinnati, losers of five straight, to eight hits in 8 2/3 innings, not allowing a Reds
SAN DIEGO -- With the backing of early run support and two homers by Franchy Cordero, Padres left-hander Clayton Richard was phenomenal Tuesday, guiding San Diego past the Reds to a 6-2 victory.
Richard held Cincinnati, losers of five straight, to eight hits in 8 2/3 innings, not allowing a Reds batter past first base until the seventh. Richard faltered with two outs in the ninth, when Tucker Barnhart's two-run, pinch-hit double off Richard's career-high 127th pitch ended his bid for a shutout.
"We desperately wanted to see him get that last out, just for him," Padres manager Andy Green said. "He deserves those opportunities. He's earned those kinds of opportunities. He's earned that trust. We felt good about giving him that opportunity."
In the eighth, Green visited Richard -- then at 105 pitches -- on the mound. Richard told his manager he was capable of continuing, and Green trusted him.
"I really appreciate the opportunity he gave me because I don't think a lot of managers would do that in that situation," Richard said. "… I felt really appreciative to have the opportunity to keep on staying in there and trying to finish what we started.
The Padres' first four batters singled off Reds starter Scott Feldman, with William Myers fisting an RBI single into right before Yangervis Solarte grounded a ball up the middle to score another run.
"They had four singles on seven pitches and they had two runs in,'' Reds manager Bryan Price said. "None of them was really hit on the barrel. But that's putting the ball in play and making something happen.''
Cordero homered in the third to give his team a 3-0 lead. It was the 100th home run Reds pitching has allowed this season, the most of any team. Cordero hit the 101st in the seventh. Cory Spangenberg extended his hitting streak to five games with an RBI single in the fifth and Jose Pirela, who went 2-for-5 to push his hitting streak to seven games, drove in a run in the eighth.
"We're just getting some good pitches to hit and getting the barrel to the ball, and the results are showing up," Cordero said through a team interpreter. "I'm making sure that pitches are in the zone, and when it comes to the offspeed stuff, I'm just making sure that they're definitely up."
MOMENTS THAT MATTERED
Franchy's follow-up: A day after hitting his first Major League home run, Cordero doubled down. In the third, he sent a Feldman changeup over Petco Park's center-field fence. At a projected 420 feet, it was the farthest Cordero has hit a ball by 27 feet. He outdid himself in the seventh, tagging Tony Cingrani for a projected 428-foot solo shot; it was the second-hardest hit of his rookie season at 112.7 mph, according to Statcast™. In 56 plate appearances in the Major Leagues, Cordero is slashing .327/.375/.635.
"It's a testament to, one, [bench coach] Mark McGwire," Green said. "In Spring Training, the first day he saw him, he points at him and says, 'That kid can hit. He's going to hit.' He's loved him from the first day of Spring Training."
Spangenberg saves day: Richard ran into trouble in the eighth, allowing a pair of singles to begin the frame. He recovered, striking out a pair before an eight-pitch walk to Joey Votto loaded the bases. When Adam Duvall chopped the first pitch he saw from Richard toward third, Spangenberg made an outstanding barehand play to get Richard out of the jam.
"That was awesome," Richard said. "It saves a guy in the bullpen, first, and then it gives me a chance to come back out, so it's terrific. It was a big-time play."
"It's nice to know that the fans get it. They understand a situation like this and what goes into it. It's special. In a big league game, to get a standing ovation, it's special." -- Richard on the reaction of Petco Park when he exited in the ninth
"Baseball is a funny game. Sometimes you can make great pitches and they have soft contact and they find holes. Other times you can make terrible pitches and they hit it right at guys. So that's the beauty of baseball, but at the same time it's the frustrating part.'' -- Feldman on the Padres not barreling balls up but still producing two first-inning runs
SOUND SMART WITH YOUR FRIENDS
Of the eight hits Richard allowed, three had a lower than 12 percent chance of being a hit, including Barnhart's two-run double in the ninth, according to Statcast™.
PIRELA PROVIDES SPARK
Pirela continued a strong performance that began when he arrived in the Major Leagues this season. He hit an infield single in the first that extended his hitting streak to seven games. After going hitless in his next three at-bats, Pirela added a two-out RBI single in the eighth. He's batting .484 overall and .555 during the streak.
Reds:Amir Garrett takes the mound for first time since exiting Friday's game in the second inning with a bruised left hand. Garrett, a southpaw, was hit by a line drive off the bat of Dodgers catcher Austin Barnes. Garrett had a short start before that outing, working 2 2/3 innings and surrendering nine runs (eight earned) on seven hits in a loss to the Braves. First pitch is at 3:40 ET as the Reds wrap up a disappointing six-game road trip still seeking their first win.
Padres:Jhoulys Chacin will make his seventh start at Petco Park, where he has been dominant. The veteran right-hander has a 3-1 record and 1.58 ERA in 40 innings at home this season. First pitch of the series finale is set for 12:40 p.m. PT.
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Jay Paris is a contributor to MLB.com based in San Diego. He covered the Reds on Tuesday.
Nathan Ruiz is a reporter for MLB.com based in San Diego.