Manny Machado is an MVP candidate because, quite frankly, it's terrifying to think where the Padres would be without him right now. Case-in-point:
Mets starter Chris Bassitt was throwing a gem on Saturday night at City Field. In the 6th inning of a scoreless game he threw Machado a slider that probably should have been called strike three. Home plate umpire Jim Wolf said it was high.
Manny didn't squander his opportunity.
Machado ripped the next pitch into the left field seats for his 16th homer of the year, a 2-run shot that accounted for the Padres entire scoring output in a 2-1 San Diego win. The Friars' All-Star 3rd baseman has carried the offense for long stretches of the season in what is arguably his best big league season (which is saying something for a guy with his resume).
Get San Diego local news, weather forecasts, sports and lifestyle stories to your inbox. Sign up for NBC San Diego newsletters.
Blake Snell got the start and had some shaky moments but made pitches when he needed to. The Mets got baserunners in the 2nd, 3rd, 4th, and 5th innings but Snell was able to solve each dilemma with a timely double play ball or strikeout. The lefty ended up going 5.0 shutout innings with five punchouts and he was followed by one heck of a performance by the San Diego bullpen.
Nabil Crismatt allowed a hit but erased that with a double play ball in the 6th, then sat back and watched Adrian Morejon throw BBs. Morejon struck out four of the five batters he faced, all with fastballs of at least 98 MPH. Luis Garcia got the final two outs in the 8th, giving way to Taylor Rogers in the 9th.
The closer was the shakiest of them all. Rogers put two runners on with a walk and hit, then J.D. Davis hit a bloop single to right to score Pete Alonso and cut the lead in half. With the tying run at 3rd base Rogers got Tomas Nido to pop out to Jake Cronenworth at 2nd base to end the game.
The Padres win the series and have a chance to sweep the team with the 2nd-best record in the National League, in their ballpark, on Sunday night in another fantastic pitching matchup. Joe Musgrove takes the mound against Carlos Carrasco.
LISTEN: With NBC 7 San Diego's Darnay Tripp and Derek Togerson behind the mic, On Friar will cover all things San Diego Padres. Interviews, analysis, behind-the-scenes...the ups, downs, and everything in between. Tap here to find On Friar wherever you listen to podcasts.