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Rookie pitcher hits slam off Scherzer, Padres overtake Nats

July 9, 2021 GMT
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San Diego Padres' Daniel Camarena, right, is congratulated by Manny Machado after hitting a grand slam off Washington Nationals starting pitcher Max Scherzer during the fourth inning of a baseball game Thursday, July 8, 2021, in San Diego. (AP Photo/Derrick Tuskan)
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San Diego Padres' Daniel Camarena, right, is congratulated by Manny Machado after hitting a grand slam off Washington Nationals starting pitcher Max Scherzer during the fourth inning of a baseball game Thursday, July 8, 2021, in San Diego. (AP Photo/Derrick Tuskan)

SAN DIEGO (AP) — Rookie reliever Daniel Camarena hit a stunning grand slam off Washington ace Max Scherzer and the San Diego Padres overcame an eight-run deficit, finally beating the Nationals 9-8 Thursday night on Trent Grisham’s RBI single in the ninth inning.

The Padres matched the biggest comeback in franchise history, helped by Fernando Tatis’ 28th home run and Grisham’s two-out hit.

But it was Camarena’s blow that really jolted the crowd at Petco Park.

Camarena, who went to San Diego’s Cathedral Catholic High, was called up earlier in the day for his second stint with the Padres. He replaced Yu Darvish starting the fourth inning and allowed Trea Turner’s second homer of the game, a two-run drive that gave the Nationals an 8-0 lead.

With the Padres’ bullpen taxed in recent days, manager Jayce Tingler had Camarena bat for himself against the struggling Scherzer with the bases loaded and two outs in the fourth. The left-hander drove a 1-2 fastball into the right-field stands to send the crowd into a frenzy and pull the Padres to 8-6.

Camarena had struck out in his only previous big league at-bat. In the minors, he was 5 for 28 (.179) with no extra-base hits and zero RBIs.

Camarena became the second pitcher in history whose first hit was a grand slam. The first was Bill Duggleby of the Philadelphia Phillies in 1898.

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Tommy Pham started the Padres ninth with a leadoff single against Sam Clay (0-2), advanced on consecutive groundouts and scored when Grisham singled with two outs.

Fernando Tatis Jr. hit his 28th homer for San Diego. All-Star Mark Melancon (2-1) pitched the ninth for the win.

DODGERS 6, MARLINS 1

MIAMI (AP) — Julio Urías allowed Jazz Chisholm’s leadoff homer, then pitched shutout ball through the seventh inning for his major league-leading 11th win, and the Los Angeles Dodgers beat Miami to avoid a four-game sweep.

Urías (11-3) gave up just four more hits, struck out nine and walked two.

Chris Taylor’s RBI single tied the score in the fourth. Matt Beaty singled in the go-ahead run in the fifth, chasing Sandy Alcantara (5-8_, and Will Smith hit a sacrifice fly off David Hess.

Miami announced Don Mattingly will return for a seventh season in 2022.

PHILLIES 8, CUBS 0

CHICAGO (AP) — Brad Miller hit three home runs in a game for the first time in his career and Philadelphia routed the sinking Cubs.

Miller hit a solo drive in the third inning and added two-run homers in the fifth and seventh innings. With a chance at joining the other 18 players who have hit a record four home runs in a game, Miller popped up in the ninth.

Zach Eflin (4-6) tossed six crisp innings as the Phillies took three of four games at Wrigley Field. Didi Gregorius added a two-run shot and All-Star catcher J.T. Realmuto scored on a double steal.

The Cubs lost for the 12th time in 13 and dropped to 43-45 as they struggled at the plate without injured stars Kris Bryant and Javier Báez.

Adbert Alzolay (4-9) lost his fifth straight start.

BREWERS 5, REDS 3

MILWAUKEE (AP) — Avisaíl García hit a tiebreaking, two-run homer in the eighth inning as Milwaukee boosted its NL Central lead to seven games over Cincinnati.

The matchup marked the first of seven straight games between the top two teams in the division — four in Milwaukee and, after the All-Star break, three in Cincinnati. The Reds had won six of their previous seven overall.

Garcia’s 16th homer of the season came off reliever Brad Brach (0-1).

Reliever Devin Williams (6-1) earned the win and Josh Hader pitched a scoreless ninth for his 21st save.

INDIANS 7, ROYALS 4

CLEVELAND (AP) — Franmil Reyes hit a three-run homer with two outs in the ninth inning as Cleveland ended a nine-game losing streak, its longest under manager Terry Francona.

After Kansas City manager Mike Matheny elected to have reliever Greg Holland (2-4) walk the dangerous José Ramírez to put runners at first and second, Reyes made him pay with his blast into the left-field seats.

Carlos Santana homered twice for the Royals, connecting for a tying shot in the ninth off James Karinchak (5-2).

TWINS 5, TIGERS 3

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — Ryan Jeffers and Miguel Sanó homered, leading J.A. Happ and the Minnesota Twins over Detroit.

Jeffers’ homer with one out in the fifth inning marked Minnesota’s first runner against Tigers starter Tarik Skubal.

Sanó started the seventh with his 15th homer of the season, connecting against off Skubal (5-8) to tie the game at 3. The Twins added two more runs in the inning,

Happ (5-4) allowed three runs and eight hits in seven innings. Tyler Duffey pitched a perfect eighth and Taylor Rogers secured his eighth save in 10 chances.

MARINERS 4, YANKEES 0

SEATTLE (AP) — Rookie Logan Gilbert (3-2) pitched one-hit ball over seven innings, struck out a career-high eight and retired his final 18 batters.

Kyle Seager and Dylan Moore homered off Jordan Montgomery (3-4) as Seattle salvaged the final game of the three-game set.

Paul Sewald struck out a pair in the eighth and Kendall Graveman finished. New York was held to one hit for the first time since Sept. 25, 2019, vs. Tampa Bay and dropped to 3-8 when going for a series sweep this year, including 1-5 on the road.

ATHLETICS 2, ASTROS 1

HOUSTON (AP) — Jed Lowrie and Matt Olson drove in runs to back Frankie Montas (8-7), who allowed one run and five hits in 6 2/3 innings and struck out 10. Oakland stopped a three-game skid and ended Houston’s six-game winning streak.

Jake Diekman gave up one hit in a scoreless ninth for his seventh save. Lance McCullers Jr. (6-2) lost for the first time in 10 starts since April 14, giving up two runs and seven hits while striking out eight in seven innings.

ROCKIES 9, DIAMONDBACKS 3

PHOENIX (AP) — Dom Nunez, hitting just .159, doubled twice and singled as Colorado avoided a three-game sweep by Arizona, a major league-worst 25-64. The Rockies won for just the seventh time in 40 road games this season. They’re 31-17 at Coors Field.

Chi Chi Gonzalez (3-5) allowed three runs and six hits in five innings.

Colorado scored twice in the sixth off Jordan Weems (0-1) for a 4-3 lead and added four runs in the seventh.

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