Friday, April 8, 2016

Padres break out, spoil Story's show at Coors

While Rockies rookie Trevor Story was busy making home run history, the Padres were happy to put a streak of futility behind them. San Diego ended a 30-inning scoreless streak to start the season with a six-run fourth inning en route to its first victory, 13-6, in the Rockies' home opener at a sold-out Coors Field.
"As soon as the first run scored, I think everybody relaxed," said Padres skipper Andy Green, who picked up his first win as a big league manager. "You saw a lot of missiles hit after that. These guys can hit. They've been good baseball players for a long time. It was just one of those things that you can't explain in baseball."
Story tied a Major League record by homering in his fourth game to start a season, with a two-run shot off Padres starter Colin Rea in the bottom of the fourth.
Story added his sixth homer off Ryan Buchter in the bottom of the ninth, becoming the first player in MLB history to tally six home runs in his first four games.
Even in defeat, Rockies manager Walt Weiss could marvel.
"I've never seen anything like it, let alone a rookie," Weiss said of Story. "It was fun to watch, one of the few bright spots today."
Matt Kemp blasted a three-run homer in the fifth and Melvin Upton Jr. went deep for two in the sixth, both off reliever Justin Miller, for an 11-5 lead.
It was a festive occasion for most, but not for starting pitchers. Rea gave up five runs on six hits and four walks, and lasted just 3 1/3 innings, with Story's homer being his goodbye delivery -- yet he wasn't the losing pitcher. That's because Rockies righty Jordan Lyles gave up five runs on seven hits and three walks in 3 1/3 frames.
Rally starter: Call Upton a trend-setter. With one out in the top of the fourth inning, Upton scored the Padres' first run on an RBI single by Jon Jay. The next five men in the order all followed suit. Cory Spangenberg knocked in two with a triple and came around to score on Kemp's single. Yangervis Solarte would later cap the rally with a two-run double, scoring Kemp and Wil MyersMore >
His-Story: Story tied Willie Mays (1971), current Padres hitting coach Mark McGwire (1998),Nelson Cruz (2011) and Chris Davis ('13) in homering in the first four games of a season. The two homers he hit in his Major League debut and the homers in four games to begin his career also are records. More >
"I like to bring good energy to the team," Story said. "Walt said I was a bright spot [Friday], and I guess that's good, but the ultimate goal is to win and we didn't do that today."
Not making him pay: Rea languished through 32 pitches and three walks in the first inning, but escaped with no runs. He enticed Gerardo Parra to swing through a high, 89-mph cutter, and fanned Mark Reynolds on a 2-2, 96-mph fastball. The pitch count continued to climb, which led to Rea's exit, but keeping the Rockies from scoring then turned out big.
Relievin' Robbie: The Padres recalled left-hander Robbie Erlin before Friday's game, and they wasted no time getting him into the action. Erlin entered in a one-run game in the bottom of the fourth and promptly tossed 3 2/3 shutout frames, allowing only one hit to earn the win.
"He's somebody we trust, somebody we believe in," Green said of Erlin. "Obviously bringing him into a game that's that close and letting him pitch crucial innings, we clearly believe in him. [His return to the Majors] came quick and we're happy to have him here."
"Offensively we finally broke the seal and started scoring a whole bunch of runs. Now we're averaging almost four runs a game -- so there's not much to talk about." -- Green, on the offensive breakout
"Today's loss is on my shoulders, definitely. There's no way around it. Trevor puts too more in the seats and we can't talk about that as much as we should. That's my fault." -- Lyles
The Rockies' attendance of 49,360 was a sellout. The 50,977 tickets distributed represents a Coors Field regular-season record.
Padres: Drew Pomeranz makes his Padres debut, perhaps fittingly against his former club, the Rockies, with first pitch at 5:10 p.m. PT. Pomeranz hasn't returned to Colorado since he spent his first three big league seasons here. He won a rotation spot out of camp after spending the past two seasons primarily as a reliever in Oakland.
Rockies: Lefty Jorge De La Rosa struggled with control and nearly lost a big lead to the D-backs on Opening Day, but the bullpen and the slugging offense saved him from a loss. He'll try to do better on Saturday at 6:10 p.m. MT.

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