Offense goes quiet as Padres drop series

April 25th, 2018

DENVER -- During a 13-run onslaught in Colorado on Monday night, the Padres insisted their bats had finally come to life. Over the next two days, their offense was rocked right back to sleep.
San Diego mustered two runs in a pair of losses to the Rockies, the latest a 5-2 defeat on Wednesday afternoon at Coors Field. Colorado right-hander worked six scoreless innings, and recorded 11 of the 16 strikeouts by Rockies pitchers. Many of the same issues surfaced for a slumping, swing-happy Padres offense.
"We had our pitches to hit off Jon Gray early in counts, and we missed them," manager Andy Green said. "We gave [pitchers] who strike guys out an opportunity to punch us out."
Of course, the Padres are playing without (family leave) and (tight left hamstring), who have anchored the heart of their order for most of the season. Both are expected back Friday, and their return can't come soon enough. Hosmer, in particular, drew four walks Monday before his departure. The rest of the Padres, meanwhile, have desperately searched for that type of plate discipline.
Those struggles were tested further by home-plate umpire Hunter Wendelstedt. In the final two frames, three Padres went down looking on questionable calls. After a leadoff double from in the ninth, rookie was rung up on a pitch that appeared well below his knees.
"He shouldn't be getting rung up on that," Green said. "That should be something that's celebrated. He should be walking to first base off their closer in the ninth inning. But it's a ball that's called a strike. You want your guys rewarded for that when they're working that hard."
The Padres got some late consolation with a sac fly in the seventh and a RBI groundout in the ninth. But they never mounted a serious threat.

Meanwhile, San Diego righty was undone by a three-run third that gave the Rockies an early 4-0 edge. Ross walked the first two hitters of the frame, and tripled them home. He'd score one batter later on a sacrifice fly.
Ross was removed with his pitch count at 94 after four innings -- not the encore he was hoping for following Friday's no-hit bid in Arizona. He threw 127 pitches in that start, and Green noted some potential fatigue. Ross wasn't about to use that as an excuse.
"I had normal rest, normal recovery, was ready to go today," Ross said. "Unfortunately I just had some long innings early."

Ross allowed six hits and three walks while striking out seven -- by no means a disastrous showing in a day game at hitter-friendly Coors Field. But his offense would do him no favors.
"The game ... can humble you quick," said Myers, who went 2-for-4 and played first base for the first time this season in Hosmer's absence. "You can go out and have a great day, then come back and have a terrible day. And vice versa."

Methodical rally: The Rockies opened the scoring with a tough-luck second inning for Ross. led off by reaching on an errant throw from Headley, a play which was ruled a hit. Two pitches later, Ross appeared to have picked off Story, but Wendelstedt had called time a moment prior. Ross would surrender two more seeing-eye hits, and Colorado had plated its first run courtesy of three singles with an average hit probability of 30 percent.
No swiping: With two outs in the sixth, broke for second base and was nailed on a nice throw from Rockies catcher Tony Wolters. The Padres challenged the ruling, as it appeared Pirela's slide beat the throw. But replays proved inconclusive, and the call stood. Down by four with Myers at the plate, Pirela's break seemed questionable. Afterward, Green took responsibility for taking "an aggressive chance."
"I don't want to get thrown out stealing in that situation," Green said. "But if we can scratch a run across with two outs, we're one run closer to coming back into the game. It's an aggressive chance, and it didn't work out."

When Cordero makes contact, he hits the ball hard. Harder than just about anyone in the sport, in fact. Cordero struck out twice and walked once Wednesday, but in the top of the second, he ripped a 116.8 mph rocket that one-hopped DJ LeMahieu. The Rockies second baseman made the play look easy, though it assuredly wasn't. In the past week, Cordero has crushed three lasers at 116 mph or harder -- the Padres' three highest exit velocities ever recorded by Statcast™.

"We've been beat up. That's been obvious. But you've got Major League players on the field that can make baseball plays and didn't make plays. It's probably hurt us most offensively. You take anybody's 3-, 4-hole hitters out of the lineup, it hurts." -- Green
Following an off-day Thursday, the Padres return home for a three-game series against the Mets beginning Friday at 7:10 p.m. PT. starts for San Diego opposite New York's . Hosmer (family leave) and Villanueva (tight left hamstring) are expected to return to the lineup.