Phils makes another save, beats Padres 4-3 on Miller’s brace
PHILADELPHIA (AP) – Brad Miller doubled up with an out in the 10th inning to save the beleaguered Phillies relieving box, giving Philadelphia a 4-3 win over the San Diego Padres on Friday night.
The Phillies lost a 3-0 lead in the ninth inning, their 22nd stoppage of the season and their eighth in nine games.
“It’s a tough game,” said manager Joe Girardi. “(The bullpen) will start. I believe in them and I will stay positive, that’s my nature.
Jose Alvarado got the final from the eighth in relief from Zack Wheeler but allowed three of the first four hitters to reach the ninth, including an RBI brace from Fernando Tatis Jr. Ranger Suarez (4-2) entered and allowed a two-run double to Jurickson Profar.
“We knew Wheeler was going to be a challenge,” San Diego manager Jayce Tingler said. “We were hoping to get to the paddock and we did. We just didn’t get to the pen early enough.
Suarez was better in the 10th, dropping all three batters. That set up Miller, who drove an Austin Adams (2-2) slider deep to the center-right with runners in the first and second and one out. Miller rounded the goals off as if it were a home run, but the ball bounced off the wall. It was good enough to score Andrew McCutchen from second place.
“It was really good,” Miller said.
Wheeler pitched 7 2/3 innings scoreless and Didi Gregorius scored on his return to the Philadelphia roster. Wheeler allowed four hits with nine strikeouts and no walks.
“When you get a performance from Zack Wheeler like that, you have to be able to win that game,” Girardi said.
Tatis, the NL’s starting shortstop in the next All-Star game, doubled twice for the Padres, who have lost only for the third time in their last 14 games.
Gregorius has missed the last 50 games due to inflammation in his right elbow and pseudogout. He was solid off the shortstop and gave Philadelphia a 3-0 lead with a home run with a fifth out, leading Chris Paddack’s 2-1 change at 86 mph over the right wall.
Paddack allowed three runs on four hits with five strikeouts and one walk in seven innings.
Wheeler struck out pinched hitter Wil Myers for the second out in the eighth, then was pulled out by Girardi, who was loudly booed.
“I get the frustration, but I take Joe’s back on this,” Wheeler said. “I understand the fans doing this, but there’s more to it than tonight.”
Wheeler lowered his ERA to 2.05.
“It’s amazing,” Miller said. “What our guy does is Cy Young, MVP, that’s all. He’s right in the corners with power stuff; it’s incredible. It was really special to see him pitch every five days.
The first pitch was just 14 hours after the Padres arrived in Philadelphia after Thursday night’s 5-4 loss to Cincinnati which included a 52-minute rain delay. Tingler said the Padres cut their normal pre-game activities short, doing only light work on the pitch and hitting into the cage.
Padres: Tingler said that LHP Blake Snell (disease) and RHP Daniel Lamet (inflammation of the right forearm) continue to progress. Snell could start Sunday against Philadelphia while Lament contemplates a comeback after the All-Star break.
Phillies: To make room for Gregorius, Philadelphia sent Nick Maton to the Lehigh Valley Triple-A.
Padres RHP Yu Darvish (7-2, 2.44 ERA) are set to face Philadelphia RHP Zach Eflin (2-6, 4.20) as the streak continues on Saturday night.
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