Archie and friends: 5-run frame lifts Bradley vs. Padres
By AJ Cassavell and Steve Gilbert
PHOENIX -- Archie Bradley had the finest outing of his big league career and Paul Goldschmidt contributed a pair of RBIs as the D-backs beat the Padres, 6-3, on Sunday afternoon to claim the series win.
"I'm so solid and so comfortable in my mechanics that I'm more focused on the outcome, not worrying about if I'm landing in the right spot or whatever's going on mechanically," Bradley said.
Bradley (2-0) scattered four hits and allowed three runs while setting career highs in both innings pitched, with 7 1/3, and strikeouts, with nine. The Padres managed to score off Bradley when Christian Bethancourt singled home a run in the second and Alexei Ramirez hit a solo shot in the fifth, with the Friars' final run coming when reliever Daniel Hudson allowed an inherited runner to score in the eighth.
The D-backs' offense gave Bradley support early with a run in the first and a five-run outburst in the second. Goldschmidt capped the inning with a two-run double and Bradley helped out his own cause by laying down a successful safety squeeze -- which turned into a single when Wil Myers pumped home before airmailing a throw to first.
"I saw the runner out of my peripheral vision and wanted to make the play at home," said Myers, who is in his first season as a full-time first baseman, and has been very good there for the most part. "That was one of those things that I should've known, that early in the game, just take the out. That's one of those things where I was too aggressive, and I'll learn from experience."
MOMENTS THAT MATTERED Hey Archie!: With the injury to Rubby De La Rosa, Bradley figures to get an extended look in the rotation. The former first-round pick flashed a good curveball Sunday to go with his mid-90s fastball. If he continues to pitch like that he could find himself in the big leagues to stay.
"He's done a nice job in his first outing and he's going to continue in this rotation for a while," D-backs manager Chip Hale said. "Teams are going to look at the video and they're going to make adjustments and he's going to have to locate pitches like he did today. So we've just got to keep building on it." More >
Goldy heating up: Goldschmidt was 5-for-8 in the series with the Padres and he is hitting .375 (15-for-40) over his last 12 games with 11 walks. That's more like the Goldschmidt the team is used to seeing, rather than the one who was hitting .222 on May 16.
"We just did a nice job, and of course Goldy was right in the middle of it," Hale said. "Great at-bats, battling and hitting the ball hard. Lot of guys -- Nick Ahmed had a couple of knocks. Just impressive to score early especially with a young pitcher like Archie and give him some confidence. Really impressed by the offense."
Settling in: It took some time, but Pomeranz would eventually find his groove. After Goldschmidt's double made it 6-1, Pomeranz didn't allow a hit to any of the last 13 batters he faced, striking out eight of them, while walking two. He finished with his ERA at 2.48 -- although a questionable scoring decision on a bunt single in the second to first baseman Myers could have kept that number a bit lower.
"I just had a better mix," Pomeranz said of his success in innings three through five. "I didn't mix from the beginning, I kind of got a little predictable. You've got to be able to read that sooner and start mixing pitches." More >
Alexei? Yes!: In eight seasons with the White Sox, Ramirez racked up 109 dingers. He launched his first in another uniform on Sunday when he smacked a 1-1 fastball from Bradley into the right-field seats. Ramirez has been in search of some pop for a while now, slugging at a career-low .289.
"It's good to see him get into one," said Padres skipper Andy Green. "We had a few good swings today, but we probably chased Bradley outside the zone more than we care to.
The D-backs optioned outfielder Peter O'Brien to Triple-A Reno following the game to make room for Monday's starter Edwin Escobar.
"I guess I was due for one of those crazy innings where stuff happens." -- Pomeranz
The Padres' loss dropped them to 0-8 on Sundays this season and 1-15 in series finales. Their only victory in the final game of a series came on May 11, when the Padres swept a doubleheader from the Cubs in Chicago.
With one out in the second, Nick Ahmed broke for home on a chopper to drawn-in second baseman Alexi Amarista. The ensuing play at the plate was close, but Ahmed was ruled safe -- and that ruling stood after a challenge by Padres skipper Andy Green.
WHAT'S NEXT Padres: The Friars head to Seattle for the first game of four straight against the Mariners -- two at Safeco Field and two at Petco Park. First pitch is slated for 1:10 p.m. PT. Andrew Cashner will get the ball, looking to build off a solid start in San Francisco on Tuesday, his first since returning from the disabled list.
D-backs: Edwin Escobar will be called up Monday to start against the Astros at 1:10 p.m. MST. This will be the 24-year-old's first big league start. Escobar made a pair of relief appearances for the Red Sox 2014 and was claimed off waivers by the D-backs on April 29..