Upton Walks Off The Yankees

Padres outfielder delivers more late-inning heroics

The Padres have not swept a series in 2016. If they get their first one against the New York Yankees, it will probably have just a little extra special meaning for San Diego baseball fans who still remember the 1998 World Series.

Melvin Upton Jr. put the Friars in a position to pull it off. Upton hit his third walk-off home run of the season on Saturday night, a solo shot leading off the 9th against Yankees reliever Andrew Miller, to give San Diego a 2-1 win and their second straight one-run decision against the Yanks.

Upton has been the Padres’ best position player not named Myers and his big moment was made possible in part by San Diego’s best pitcher.

Lefty Drew Pomeranz made his second straight stellar start. Pomeranz went 7.0 innings, allowing one run and striking out seven. In his last two starts he’s gone 14.0 innings with just one run allowed, potentially rekindling his chances of getting a spot on the All-Star team.

The Padres got their first run in the 6th inning on a Matt Kemp RBI double that scored Wil Myers and tied the game 1-1. That’s how it stayed until the bottom of the 9th.

Yankees manager Joe Girardi had closer Aroldis Chapman ready to go but chose to stick with Miller, is setup man who is likely going to be on the American League All-Star team. Apparently Girardi did not check his stat sheet. Upton came in to the game with a .400 average and two home runs in his career against Miller.

Perhaps it should be no surprise, then, that Upton hammered the first pitch he saw in to the left field seats to send the Friar Faithful home happy. The Padres can complete that sweep on Sunday if Andrew Cashner can come off the disabled list and beat Chad Green.

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