A few fans tuned out after the Dodgers scored a pair in the top of the first. A lot more tuned out after they put up 3 in the fifth. But not any of you, right? True believers that you are, you stuck around for the epic ninth inning comeback. And if you're wondering how a lineup devoid of all but one of their regular infielders puts together a 3-run rally in the bottom of the ninth, Ben Higgins would like to point something out to you.
Padres are now 3-0 when wearing the "19" home plate patch over their hearts.— Ben Higgins (@BenHigginsSD) June 21, 2014
The game started pretty badly, with Dee Gordon hitting a leadoff triple that turned into a run courtesy of Jace Peterson's throwing error. A double from Adrian Gonzalez and an RBI single from Matt Kemp rounded out the Dodgers' first. Seth Smith got one of those runs back right away by sending a nice souvenir to the the kids at the beach.
Ian Kennedy settled down a bit after that and held LA at 2 until the fifth inning, when everything fell apart. After a single by Dodgers starter Dan Haren, Dee Gordon reached first on a fielder's choice. A wild pitch sent him to second. He didn't need the wild pitch, though; Kennedy walked Hanley Ramirez. Yasiel Puig hit a single right into the 5.5 hole. Everth Cabrera deflected it, which gave Alexi Amarista a chance to catch Ramirez at home. Alexi's throw was off the mark, though, allowing Ramirez to score and Puig to reach third. Gonzalez hit a sacrifice fly to put the Dodgers up 5-1.
Amarista atoned for his error in the bottom half of the inning, hitting a leadoff double. Jake Goebbert pinch hit for Kennedy, and picked up his first major league hit and RBI with a line drive single to right. One inning later, Smith hit his second homer of the night to narrow the gap by another run.
Down by two in the bottom of the ninth, Amarista started things off with a single to center. Going for broke, Bud Black sent Carlos Quentin to the plate in Peterson's place. Quentin sent the ball rattling around the left field corner for an RBI double to put the Padres within one. Will Venable followed suit with a masterful at bat, fighting through six pitches before launching the seventh into the left center gap to make it 5 all, with the winning run in scoring position. Rene Rivera laid down a perfect bunt to move him 90 feet closer to victory. All the Padres needed was a sacrifice fly, and Everth Cabrera only needed one pitch to deliver. A fly ball to right field sent Venable home for the win.
Tyson Ross will try to keep the winning streak alive at 7:10 PM tomorrow night.
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Jodes led the comment thread, and there were so many recs that I'm going to say everybody wins.