Schimpf's HR backs Richard as Padres blank Marlins

Schimpf's HR backs Richard as Padres blank Marlins

MIAMI -- One swing from Ryan Schimpf -- a solo home run to right -- and seven shutout innings from Clayton Richard were enough for the Padres to hold off the Marlins, 1-0, on Saturday night at Marlins Park.

The Padres bounced back after allowing a four-run, late-inning lead disappear on Friday night in a 7-6 loss. Brad Hand, tagged for three runs on Friday, recorded three huge outs after inheriting a runner on first in the eighth inning. San Diego's win evened the series. Kevin Quackenbush recorded his first save of the season, and Miami was blanked 1-0 for the third time this month.

"I think that shows the resiliency of Brad Hand, how good he's been all season for us," Padres manager Andy Green. "I thought he was outstanding, and Quack executed his pitches well. Real strong from those two guys, especially preserving a 1-0 lead on the road."

With the Cardinals' loss to the A's, the Marlins remain 1 1/2 games out of the second National League Wild Card spot. But because the Pirates won, they too are 1 1/2 behind St. Louis. Miami is a game ahead of the Mets.

Richard found himself in jams in the first three innings, with Miami putting a runner at third base in each of those frames. But after getting out of trouble, the left-hander settled down and didn't allow a runner to advance past first base over his next four innings before exiting after 94 pitches.

"He's a guy who is going to stay down, is going to throw soft," Marlins manager Don Mattingly said of Richard. "You've got to force him up in the strike zone and get him in the strike zone. He gets the double-play ball there in the first inning. Guys that were better against him, it seemed like they went the other way with him. We just weren't able to sustain enough rallies with him."

For the second straight night, Schimpf showed his left-handed power. His blast with two outs in the fourth inning off Jose Urena was his 16th of the season.

"That was the difference in the game," Urena said, "but something had to happen. That was a full count for this guy. He was sitting ready for something to hit right there."

Stretched out: Richard's seven-inning stint was a season high. He worked five innings in his first start of the season on Aug. 14 against the Mets and went six innings in his next outing. Richard completed seven frames on 94 pitches (63 strikes) to record his first win of the season.

"Got into a little bit of a rhythm," said Richard, who praised the work behind the plate from catcher Derek Norris. "I was able to rely on him and he kept me in it. A combination of that and our defense playing so well. That and Schimpf in the lineup, it's usually a good thing." More >

Richard's strong start

Prado produces, offense stalls: Martin Prado continues to come through in the clutch, and on Saturday, the veteran third baseman collected four hits, including a double, but the middle of Miami's order wasn't able to follow with productive at-bats. In the first, Prado singled. With runners at first and third with one out, Marcell Ozuna bounced into an inning-ending double play. Prado doubled to lead off the third and was stranded at third. After a leadoff single off Jose Dominguez in the eighth, Prado was lifted for pinch-runner Dee Gordon. Again, Miami was unable to manufacture the tying run.

"Martin is amazing," Mattingly said. "Just being so steady and consistent. He's that guy. I don't know where we'd be without those three or four guys who have been really steady for us, and Martin has obviously been that guy on the field, leader in the clubhouse and guy who is really valuable for us." More >

Prado's 4-for-4 night

Power surge: Schimpf blasted his second solo homer of the series in the fourth inning on a 3-2 pitch from Urena that gave the Padres a 1-0 lead. It was the rookie's 16th home run of the season, tying for third most by a Padres second baseman in a single season.

"The [first-inning] single was the shocker of the day," Green said. "The home run, those happen. He got another changeup that he was able to elevate to the pull side."

Urena making strides: Urena has improved since joining the rotation after Adam Conley went on the disabled list. On Saturday, his lone mistake was costly, as Schimpf homered with two outs and a full count in the fourth inning. Urena put himself in a bad spot, falling behind 3-0. In his last 16 2/3 innings, or since the second frame of his Aug. 16 start in Cincinnati, Urena's ERA is 1.62. He gave up five runs in the first inning of that outing against the Reds.

"I was feeling fine," Urena said. "I was trying to do the things I had to do, keep the ball down, and make them put the ball in play. It was a pretty good game."

Marlins turn two in the 1st

"We can't ask for anything more than our guys keeping us in the game, and give us a chance to win. We just weren't able to put anything on the board tonight." -- Mattingly, on the bullpen putting up 3 1/3 scoreless innings

Quackenbush, a product of Tampa, Fla., recorded his first save of the year in just his second opportunity. The right-hander was pressed into duty because closer Brandon Maurer had been extended the night before. It marked Quackenbush's first save since 2014.

Quackenbush notches the save

Padres: Luis Perdomo (6-7, 6.24 ERA) takes the mound for the Padres at 10:10 a.m. PT in the Sunday series finale at Marlins Park. The right-hander snapped a three-game skid with a win in his last outing. He went seven innings against Arizona and did not allow an earned run, scattering five hits while striking out five with no walks.

Marlins: A blister to Andrew Cashner prompted the switch to Justin Nicolino, who was 7-6 with a 4.13 ERA in 14 Triple-A starts. The lefty last pitched for Miami on July 6. Nicolino made 12 starts with the Marlins in the first half, going 2-5 with a 5.57 ERA. More >

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Joe Frisaro has covered the Marlins for since 2002. He writes a blog, called The Fish Pond. Follow him on Twitter @JoeFrisaro and listen to his podcast.

Glenn Sattell is a contributor to based in Miami and covered the Padres on Saturday.

This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.