Hedges’ 2-run homer helps Padres to 3-0 win vs Twins
SAN DIEGO (AP) — A day after keeping All-Star reliever Brad Hand and starter Jhoulys Chacin at the trade deadline, the San Diego Padres shut down the Minnesota Twins in a pitchers’ duel.
Chacin combined with two relievers on a three-hitter and Austin Hedges, who missed time recently with a concussion, hit a two-run homer in the eighth inning of a 3-0 win Tuesday night.
The Padres had only two hits off Twins starter Jose Berrios and led 1-0 going into the eighth before Hunter Renfroe singled off Alan Busenitz with one out and Hedges homered to right-center, his 14th.
“You always enjoy a pitching duel,” Chacin said. “You see Berrios how well he was pitching, how hard they were taking at-bats against him. The only thing you can do is try to go out and throw zeros and hopefully your team will score runs. We did in the sixth and Hedges hit the two-run homer.”
Chacin (11-7) allowed three hits in seven innings, struck out three and walked two.
Kirby Yates pitched a perfect eighth and Hand worked a 1-2-3 ninth for his seventh save.
“The pitching was awesome,” said Hedges, the Padres’ catcher. “Chacin battled. His stuff was great. Everybody was really good, was on point, stuck with the game plan, executed pitches. It was a really, really good all-around team win.”
Hedges said he was “absolutely” happy the Padres held onto Hand.
“I think he threw a slider to (Miguel) Sano today and he didn’t know what that was. It was nasty,” Hedges said.
Berrios (9-5) held the Padres hitless through five and allowed only one run in seven innings. Renfroe opened the sixth by beating out an infield single to third base. Hedges followed with a double to right and Manuel Margot hit a sacrifice fly with one out. Hedges was thrown out trying to reach third.
Berrios had faced the minimum 15 batters until the sixth. He issued a one-out walk to Carlos Asuaje in the first before Jose Pirela hit into a double play.
“I was trying to be passive, but aggressive at the same time,” Berrios said through a translator. “Try to throw a lot of quality pitches. They’re very aggressive and we knew that going in. That was part of the plan. Like I said, I was being passive because of that, but also attacking them. Everything was working — the fastball, the curve, the change, it was working pretty well, and that’s why it went so well.”
Minnesota manager Paul Molitor said Berrios “had a really good night. I thought he used all his pitches. He got a little unlucky on a couple fronts, that we didn’t give him any run support.”
Hedges said that while he was on the disabled list, he put in some extra work on his hitting. Both his hits Tuesday night were opposite field.
“That felt really good,” he said. “To see that work out was really cool, especially using the other field. I think when I’m hot, when I’m going good, I’m using the whole field. It allows me to stay on more pitches.”
The Twins have lost three straight and seven of eight.
Molitor wrote “No retreat, no surrender” on a greaseboard in a hallway in the Twins’ clubhouse. He said he was inspired by hearing the Bruce Springsteen song “No Surrender” on the playlist on his iPhone while on his morning walk along the waterfront. He said it summed up the Twins’ feelings after All-Star closer Brandon Kintzler was traded to Washington on Monday.
Molitor said the Twins have to trust the front office. “It makes it tough in the short term because it leaves a void that’s been more than adequately filled the whole season. I haven’t had to change closers, he’s been there almost every time there’s been a game that needs to be saved and it changes dramatically what we’re going to be doing at the end of the game to try to replace him. It’s kind of the nature of what we have to do from time to time.”
Molitor said he won’t name a closer right now.
Twins: OF Byron Buxton was activated from the 10-day disabled list. He missed 14 games with a left groin strain.
Twins: RHP Ervin Santana (11-7, 3.37 ERA) is scheduled to start Wednesday’s matinee series finale. He’s 2-0 with a 1.69 ERA in four career starts against the Padres.
Padres: RHP Luis Perdomo (5-5, 4.76) is 2-0 with a 2.12 ERA in three interleague starts this year.
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