Hedges homers, Cahill pitches 7 in Padres’ 5-3 win Marlins
SAN DIEGO (AP) — Although Trevor Cahill had pitched at Petco Park before, he’d never trotted out to the mound from the home dugout until Friday night.
Backed by Austin Hedge’s impressive three-run homer, Cahill pitched seven strong innings in his home debut for his hometown San Diego Padres, who beat the Miami Marlins 5-3 on Friday night for their third straight win.
“I felt really good,” said Cahill, who signed as a free agent on Jan. 20. “I didn’t know what it would feel like. Pitching here, being in the home dugout, as the game was going on, it felt really special.”
Cahill grew up in northern San Diego County, where he pitched for Vista High. He said he saw more games when the Padres played at Qualcomm Stadium than he did once they moved to Petco Park, which is a farther drive.
“I literally watched every single Padres game on TV throughout high school when I was doing homework or whatever,” he said.
Cahill (1-2) held the Marlins to one run and three hits in seven innings, struck out six and walked one.
Cahill’s only mistake was allowing Marcell Ozuna’s homer into the second deck in left to tie it at 1 with one out in the second. It was his sixth.
“I’m sure it was cool,” manager Andy Green said. “As long as he’s pitched, it feels like another game. I’m sure it’s great for him to pitch before a great crowd on a Friday night, throw the ball incredibly well, keep us in the game where we were putting a ton of guys on base for honestly the first time in a while. We just couldn’t cash in until Hedgy had the swing.”
Hedges gave the Padres a nice cushion when he homered off the front of the balcony on the fourth floor of the Western Metal Supply Co. Building in the left field corner, his fourth. It was off reliever David Phelps (2-2). Rookie Manuel Margot was aboard on a single and Yangervis Solarte on an intentional walk.
“I felt great,” Hedges said. “In that situation, walking Soly, he’s been great for us; he probably would have drove the guy in, too, but I was just trying to get a knock to drive both those guys in and give us a little bit of a lead.”
After starting the season 0 for 24, Hedges has gone 9 for 27 with two doubles and four homers, with seven RBIs.
“He can hit,” Green said. “It gets pretty simple. We’ve known it the whole time. In that 0-for-20-whatever to start the season, other people doubted it; nobody in-house doubted it. We knew he was going to hit home runs when he was going to turn on fastballs. You’re going to go through stretches where it’s tough to hit. Tough game, tough level. He doesn’t quit. He grinds.”
The Padres scored a run earlier in the inning when Luis Sardinas, who singled while pinch-hitting for Cahill, came in on Wil Myers’ double play.
Giancarlo Stanton hit a two-run homer, his fifth, with one out in the ninth. He won the Home Run Derby here last July 12 and had a big homer for the United States in a victory against the Dominican Republic last month that put the Americans into the semifinals of the World Baseball Classic.
Margot hit a leadoff triple to right in the first and scored on Erick Aybar’s sacrifice fly. The Padres had runners on the corners with one out after Myers walked and Solarte singled before Adam Conley retired the side.
Conley held San Diego to one run and six hits in six innings, struck out five and walked two.
“I thought Adam was really good tonight,” manager Don Mattingly said. “He threw the ball really well for us, kept us in the game, really gave us the chance to wake up. We really didn’t do enough to win, other than Ozuna’s swing and we get a couple runs there in the ninth. But other than that, we didn’t really mount much of a charge against their guy all night.
“In between the Ozuna homer and the Stanton homer, there just wasn’t a lot of action. We didn’t get anything going on.”
Marlins: RHP Dan Straily (1-1, 4.61) is scheduled to make his fourth start.
Padres: RHP Jered Weaver (0-1, 4.24) is scheduled to make his home debut. Signed in the offseason as a free agent, his only other start at Petco Park was with the Angels on May 18, 2012, when the beat the Padres.
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