Bogaerts, Cruz, bullpen lead San Diego past Braves, 5-4

Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports

ATLANTA – Xander Bogaerts drove in the go-ahead run in the sixth inning, Nelson Cruz went 3 for 5 with two RBIs and the San Diego Padres got strong relief pitching to beat the Atlanta Braves 5-4 on Friday night.

The Padres began the game with a 5.84 bullpen ERA, third-highest in the majors, before Brent Honeywell, Luis García and Josh Hader combined to blank Atlanta in the last 4 1/3 innings. Hader celebrated his 29th birthday with his second save of the season – retiring three of four batters with two strikeouts in the ninth.

Bogaerts put San Diego up 5-4 with an RBI single that bounced into shallow right field on a check-swing. His good fortune helped San Diego, which advanced to the NL Championship Series last year, stop a two-game skid and improve to 4-4.

The Braves, who dropped to 6-2, scored three times in the third to force a 3-3 tie on Marcell Ozuna‘s homer, Riley’s RBI single and a wild pitch by starter Nick Martinez, who gave up a bases-loaded walk in the fifth to make it 4-4. Martinez walked five and allowed four runs in 4 2/3 innings.

Atlanta rookie Jared Shuster had his own struggles with command throughout four-plus innings, walking four and giving up four runs and six hits. He issued a one-out walk to Juan Soto in the first and gave up an infield single to Manny Machado and an RBI double to Cruz before allowing a bases-loaded walk that made it 2-0.

San Diego led 3-0 in the second on Cruz’s infield single. The Padres went up 4-3 in the fifth when Machado doubled and scored on another single by Cruz.


Atlanta RF Ronald Acuña Jr. leaped to make a tough catch against the wall to rob Soto of an extra-base hit and end the fourth.


Ozzie Albies and LF Eddie Rosario went a combined 0 for 9 with 14 runners left on base.


The Braves placed CF Michael Harris II on the injured list with a lower back strain and called up Eli White from Gwinnett to take his place. Sam Hilliard took the spot of Harris, last year’s NL Rookie of the Year, in the lineup and went 2 for 4. Manager Brian Snitker said Harris isn’t injured seriously and should be ready to return in 10 days. … Padres RHP Joe Musgrove, recovering from a fractured left big toe, gave up five hits and three runs – two earned – while striking out six in a rehab start Thursday for Triple-A El Paso in Sacramento. Manager Bob Melvin said it was too early to tell if Musgrove will need another rehab start before he rejoins the rotation. Melvin added that LHP Ryan Weathers, who took Musgrove’s spot, will likely get another start, Monday at the New York Mets.


Braves RHP Charlie Morton (1-0, 5.06 ERA) will start opposite San Diego RHP Michael Wacha (1-0, 6.00) as the teams play the third game of a four-game series. Rain is forecast for Saturday, so the game could get pushed up as part of a doubleheader on Sunday.

McCutchen’s sacrifice fly lifts Pirates to 5-4 win, extends Athletics’ road losing streak to 15

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PITTSBURGH – Andrew McCutchen’s tiebreaking sacrifice fly in the eighth inning lifted Pittsburgh to a 5-4 victory over Oakland on Monday night, extending the Pirates’ win streak to six games and sending the Athletics to their record-tying 15th consecutive road loss.

The 15 straight defeats away from home matches the Athletics’ record since they moved from Kansas City in 1968. Oakland set that mark in 1986.

The major league-worst Athletics (12-50) have lost five games in a row overall. They are on pace to finish the season exactly 100 games under .500 at 31-131.

“It’s tough,” Athletics manager Mark Kotsay said. “Tonight’s game, we didn’t play well enough to win the game. I don’t want to say we gave the game away but there were a lot of instances where we had a chance to capitalize on opportunities and didn’t do it.”

McCutchen also singled and drew three walks to go with two RBIs. The 2013 NL MVP now has 1,998 career hits.

With the score tied at 4, Ji Hwan Bae led off the decisive eighth inning with a single off Sam Moll (0-3) and advanced to third on Austin Hedges’ one-out single. McCutchen’s sac fly plated Bae.

“I was just trying to get the job done. I understand the situation there,” McCutchen said. “We just need to get the run. I was trying to bear down against a hard thrower and trying to get that run in as much as I can, and I was able to do it and have a good at-bat.”

Angel Perdomo (1-0) retired both hitters he faced. and Colin Holdeman pitched a scoreless ninth inning for his first career save. It was an eventful inning for Holderman as the first three batters reached base, but he struck out Carlos Perez with runners on the corners to end it.

“I began my career as a starting pitcher in the minor leagues but ever since I was switched to relief, this has been the goal, to get a save in the big leagues,” Holderman said.

Pittsburgh starter Johan Oviedo gave up three runs and four hits with five strikeouts and two walks.

Oakland left-hander JP Sears did not allow a hit until Mark Mathias’ leadoff single in the fifth but was unable to make it through the inning. Sears was charged with one run in 4 2/3 innings while allowing two hits, walking five and striking out six.

Sears has not allowed more than two runs in five consecutive starts. His nine no-decisions are the most in the major leagues.

Ryan Noda and Brent Rooker had two hits each for the Athletics.

The Athletics tied the score at 4-4 in the eighth inning on pinch-hitter Aledmys Diaz’s run-scoring double. Oakland left the bases loaded, though, when Nick Allen hit an inning-ending flyout.

Consecutive bases-loaded walks keyed a three-run sixth inning that put the Pirates 4-3. McCutchen and Bryan Reynolds each worked bases on balls off Shintaro Fujinami to tie the score at 3-all and pinch-hitter Jack Suwinski followed with a sacrifice fly.

The Athletics opened the scoring in the first inning when rookie Esteury Ruiz reached on catcher’s interference, stole his MLB-leading 30th base of the season and scored on Noda’s single. Seth Brown doubled in a run in the third and came home on Perez’s sacrifice fly to push Oakland’s lead to 3-0.

Connor Joe hit an RBI double for the Pirates in the fifth.

The Pirates drew 10 walks, their most in a game in nearly two years.

“We had a bunch of opportunities that we didn’t capitalize (on), but the thing I think I was most proud of is we got down and we didn’t rush to get back,” Pittsburgh manager Derek Shelton said. “We were still patient.”


Athletics: LHP Kirby Snead (strained shoulder) is expected to pitch in the Arizona Complex League on Tuesday, which will be his first game action since spring training. … RHP Freddy Tarnok (strained shoulder) will throw a bullpen on Tuesday.


Pirates catching prospect Henry Davis was promoted to Triple-A Indianapolis from Double-A Altoona. In 41 games at Double-A this season, the 23-year-old hit .284 with 10 home runs and seven stolen bases.

“He was performing offensively at a level where we felt like he was more than ready to meet the challenges,” Pirates general manager Ben Cherington said. “He improved as an offensive player even since spring training, focusing on the things we were challenging him on. Defensively, he’s made strides too.”

Davis was the first overall selection in the 2021 amateur draft from the University of Louisville.


Athletics RHP James Kaprielian (0-6, 8.12 ERA) will make his first start in June after taking the loss in all four starts in May and face RHP Mitch Keller (7-1, 3.25). Keller has eight or more strikeouts in seven consecutive starts, the longest streak by a Pirates pitcher in the modern era (since 1901).