Thursday, April 17, 2014
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Cashner Grinds Through Padres Win Over Rockies

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[April 17, 2014]  SAN DIEGO  Five days after throwing his second one-hit, complete-game shutout in a span of five starts, San Diego Padres right-hander Andrew Cashner did not flirt with another gem Wednesday night against the Colorado Rockies at Petco Park.

In fact, the Padres starter lost his no-hit bid and shutout to the Rockies' fifth hitter when Justin Morneau drove a changeup 411 feet beyond the fence in right-center.

Even so, Cashner held Colorado to two runs (one earned) on nine hits over 7 1/3 innings, and the Padres defeated the Rockies 4-2 at Petco Park.

"Cashner worked his way through that game," said Padres manager Bud Black. "Overall, it was a well-pitched game. He had good movement and location. His intent is to throw strikes, get outs and not give up runs. He was pitching as the aggressor."

The Padres tied the game on Tommy Medica's second-inning homer and took a 3-1 lead in the bottom of the fifth  scoring the go-ahead on a passed ball just two days after they defeated the Rockies when two runs scored on a combination wild pitch/error.

Medica started in left field for the Padres because they were facing a left-handed starter (Jorge De La Rosa) for the first time since Opening Day.

"I thought the Medica homer was crucial," said Black. "I didn't want to let De La Rosa get in the front-running position. He's always been tough on us. Tommy's homer swung the momentum back to us."

In the fifth, third baseman Alexi Amarista started the two-run rally with a one-out, drag-bunt single to the right side and was sacrificed to second by Cashner. Shortstop Everth Cabrera hit a high chopper off the plate for an infield single, putting runners at first and third. Amarista scored the go-ahead run when a De La Rosa slider got through catcher Jordan Pacheco for a passed ball.

Outfielder Chris Denorfia then doubled down the right field line  the only ball hit out of the infield in the inning  scoring Cabrera from second to make it 3-1. Denorfia singled home the Padres fourth run in the seventh.

The turning point came in the top of the sixth when the Rockies loaded the bases against Cashner on three straight, one-out singles  two of which were grounders that Amarista, who was subbing for Chase Headley, couldn't handle at third.

Cashner got catcher Jordan Pacheco to ground to Cabrera, who converted an inning-ending double play.

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"I threw Pacheco five straight inside sinkers," said Cashner.

"He's got a real hard sinker and it came into play against Pacheco," said Rockies manager Walt Weiss. "You don't get many opportunities against a guy like that."

"I thought my sinker was good tonight," said Cashner (2-1, 1.27 ERA in four starts). "I thought my command slipped later."

Right-hander Huston Street picked up his fifth save.

De La Rosa (0-3) gave up three runs, two earned, on seven hits over six innings. His ERA fell from 9.69 to 7.57 after his best outing of the season.

NOTES: Rockies 1B Justin Morneau finished 3-for-3. ... Padres 3B Chase Headley missed Wednesday's game with a right biceps strain. 1B Yonder Alonso took grounders at third just in case Headley is more than day-to-day. ... Padres RHP Casey Kelly, rehabbing from 2013 Tommy John surgery, successfully completed a simulated game in Arizona. He might make one more simulated start before starting a rehab assignment. ... Padres LF Carlos Quentin took live batting practice for a third straight day but has yet to run on the bone bruise in his left knee, ruling out the possibility of starting a rehab assignment this weekend.

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