The Padres had lost 12 of their last 14 heading into Friday night's game against the Angels in Anaheim. One of the only two games they won was the last time Joe Musgrove started, when he threw 6.0 innings of 1-run ball and the Friars outlasted the Phillies in 10 innings.
The San Diego kid came through again.
Musgrove spun a shutout, striking out nine and allowing just three hits in a 5-0 Padres win. Only one Angels hitter got as far as 2nd base against Musgrove, whose stellar start came at a great time, not just because San Diego has been in freefall for two weeks and needed something positive to happen. The Reds won again so the win keeps the Friars two games behind Cincinnati for the 2nd National League Wild Card spot.
It was nice to see the Padres offense finally show some signs of life. It also probably helped they were facing Cooper Criswell, a 25-year-old righty making his Major League debut.
In the 2nd inning Trent Grisham and Ha-Seong Kim singled and both scored on a line shot triple to right by Jurickson Profar to make it 2-0. Profar scored on a single by Jake Marisnick, the first RBI for the outfielder since being acquired by the Padres at the July 30 trade deadline. In the inning San Diego got three runs on five straight hits to chase Criswell.
Jose Iglesias helped the cause in the 5th inning. Manny Machado singled to lead off and should have been part of a double play. Eric Hosmer chopped one to 2nd base where David Fletcher fielded it and flipped to Jose Iglesias ... who dropped the ball.
Machado was initially ruled out but the Padres challenged and, to the surprise of most people who've seen replay officials decline to overturn fairly obvious calls, Manny was called safe. Catcher Austin Nola lined a single to left-centerfield to score Machado and make it 4-0.
A couple batter later, Trent Grisham hit a grounder that should have been two ... but Iglesias threw one darn near into the 1st base dugout. His 2nd error of the inning brought in Hosmer to make it 5-0, which turned out to be plenty because Musgrove was in complete control.
The only drama late in the game was whether or not Joe would get a chance to finish what he started. With his pitch count at 101 after the 8th inning, the San Diego bullpen was still.
After so many bullpen days lately, they would finally get a full night off.
With his 111th and final pitch, Musgrove struck out Justin Upton. The Padres have had two complete games this year, both authored by the Grossmont High School alum. Over his last 19.0 innings Musgrove has allowed a mere two runs with (21) punchouts.
The Padres can sweep the short 2-game set on Saturday night with Ryan Weathers on the mound against fellow lefty Jose Suarez.
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