Padres rally for two-game Mexican sweep, beat Giants 6-4

Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

MEXICO CITY – After a game that felt like a home run derby, Matt Carpenter expected Sunday could be more of the same. It was not.

Carpenter capped an eighth-inning rally with a tiebreaking, two-run double off the glove of diving centerfielder Mike Yastrzemski, and the San Diego Padres beat the San Francisco Giants 6-4 for a two-game sweep of Major League Baseball’s first regular-season series in Mexico City.

A day after winning an 11-home run thriller 16-11, the Padres overcame a 4-0 deficit with three runs in the fifth and three in the eighth.

“After last night´s game you go to bed thinking that this one was going to be similar and it had a different feeling and we kind of have to play it a more traditional ballgame,” Carpenter said.

In the thin air of Estadio Alfredo Harp Helú, 7,349 feet above sea level, the first inning turned into another power display when LaMonte Wade Jr. led off with a home run off Yu Darvish.

Then the game settled down and the crowd, a majority supporting the Padres, went home happy.

“We were really looking forward to the series, we knew it would be really exciting and Mexico City didn’t let us down. The atmosphere was great,” Carpenter said.

Darvish allowed three homers after not giving up any in his first four starts. He allowed four runs and nine hits in six innings with nine strikeouts.

“The home run at the first at-bat really surprised me, but I got some advice from pitching coach Ruben Niebla and I could settle down for a good outing,” Darvish said through a translator. “Under these conditions you realize that there are some pitches that don´t move like you want, and my job was to find the ones that do work.”

San Diego headed home with a 15-14 record after going 6-3 on an 11-day trip.

“I´m not sitting here thinking about the record, but once we get home, being over .500 is significant,” Padres manager Bob Melvin said.

J.D. Davis went deep in the second and Mitch Haniger homered in a two-run third that included an RBI single by Yastrzemski, who is headed to the injured list.

Before a crowd of 19,633, Austin Nola‘s two-run homer and Juan Soto‘s RBI single against Alex Cobb cut the deficit to 4-3 in the in the fifth.

Tyler Rogers (0-2), who allowed Manny Machado‘s go-ahead, two-run homer a day earlier, couldn’t hold the lead and lost for the second straight day.

Juan Soto worked out an eight-pitch walk with one out in the eighth and Xander Bogaerts singled. Camilo Doval relieved, and Jake Cronenworth linked a tying single to right.

Nelson Cruz struck out and Carpenter fouled off three straight pitches before lofting Doval’s fourth straight 100 mph-plus offering into short center. Yastrzemski sprinted in and dived but the ball popped out of his glove as Bogaerts and Cronenworth scored.

Yastrzemski limped off the field, accompanied by manager Gabe Kapler and athletic trainer Dave Groeschner. Yastrzemski strained his left hamstring and likely will go on the injured list, Kapler said.

Luis García (1-2) pitched two hitless innings, and Josh Hader got three straight groundouts to remain perfect in 10 save chances, completing a game that took 2 hours, 52 minutes, down from Saturday’s 3:44.


The humidor for storing baseballs was at sea level settings and not for an altitude like Mexico City’s. “For several weeks they had a malfunction related to the water levels” Kapler said. “To my understanding it´s not something that you can just flip a switch on and fix. It’s an unforeseen challenge, one that you got to work together to get through the day.”


The teams reverted to regular uniforms Sunday, the Padres in home white pinstripes, the Giants in gray, a day after wearing special outfits for the series opener.


Cruz hit a drive off the wall in right-center in the second, at 42 years, 303 days becoming the oldest player to triple since Ichiro Suzuki at 42 years, 327 days on Sept. 13, 2016.


Giants: SS Brandon Crawford (right calf) didn’t play after exiting Saturday in the fourth inning. Kapler said Crawford was feeling better.


Padres: LHP Blake Snell (0-4, 5.48 ERA) is set to start Monday against Cincinnati, which sends RHP Luke Weaver (0-1, 7.71) to the mound.

Giants: RHP Ross Stripling (0-1, 6.89) starts Monday’s series opener at defending champion Houston, which starts RHP Luis Garcia (2-2, 4.00).

MLB, WNBA postpone games due to smoke from Canadian wildfires

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NEW YORK — With the stench of smoke permeating Yankee Stadium and wafting through its walkways, Major League Baseball postponed games in New York and Philadelphia on Wednesday night because of poor air quality caused by Canadian wildfires.

A National Women’s Soccer League game in New Jersey and an indoor WNBA game set for Brooklyn were also called off Wednesday amid hazy conditions that have raised alarms from health authorities.

The New York Yankees’ game against the Chicago White Sox was rescheduled as part of a doubleheader starting at 4:05 p.m. on Thursday, and the Philadelphia Phillies’ game against the Detroit Tigers was reset for 6:05 p.m. on Thursday, originally a day off for both teams.

“These postponements were determined following conversations throughout the day with medical and weather experts and all of the impacted clubs regarding clearly hazardous air quality conditions in both cities,” MLB said in a statement.

The National Weather Service issued an air quality alert for New York City, saying: “the New York State Department of Health recommends that individuals consider limiting strenuous outdoor physical activity to reduce the risk of adverse health effects.” In Philadelphia, the NWS issued a Code Red.

The Yankees and White Sox played through a lesser haze on Tuesday night. A day later, stadium workers and fans arriving early to the ballpark wore face masks for protection in a scene reminiscent of the height of the COVID-19 pandemic.

“It was business as usual for me coming in. I got in around 12, 12:30, and didn’t really think too much of it,” Yankees manager Aaron Boone said. “I actually walked outside about 2 o’clock and was like – like everyone else, like – whoa.”

White Sox manager Pedro Grifol thought MLB made the right decision postponing the game.

“These are health issues, right? So this has got to be it. We’ve been through everything – snow, rain, hail. I don’t think I’ve been through something like this,” he said. “Today at one point, it was pretty bad out there. We walked out of the dugout and it was kind of orange. They did the right thing. They got all the information.

“I’m assuming if Major League Baseball is comfortable setting up a doubleheader tomorrow, they have some type of information that it should be better than what it is today, or at least safe.”

In Philadelphia, the Phillies beat the Tigers 1-0 on Tuesday night in a game played in hazy conditions with the smell of smoke in the air. Afterward, manager Rob Thomson and his Phillies players said the conditions didn’t affect them.

About a half-hour before Wednesday’s postponement, Thomson said he thought the game would be played. But the Philadelphia skyline could not be seen from the ballpark in the afternoon, and the smoky smell remained.

Minor league teams nearby also changed plans. The Yankees’ Triple-A affiliate at Scranton/Wilkes-Barre in Pennsylvania, and the Mets’ top farm club in Syracuse, New York, postponed their games for the second consecutive night.

The Mets’ High-A affiliate in Brooklyn completed a game Wednesday against Greenville that began at 11 a.m.

The WNBA called off a game between the Minnesota Lynx and New York Liberty, saying the decision was made to “protect the health and safety of our fans, teams and community.” A makeup date wasn’t immediately announced.

Even inside Barclays Center at the morning shootaround, reporters could smell smoke in the arena.

The NWSL postponed Orlando’s match at Gotham in Harrison, New Jersey, from Wednesday night to Aug. 9.

“The match could not be safely conducted based on the projected air quality index,” the NWSL said.

At nearby Belmont Park, the New York Racing Association said training went on as planned Wednesday ahead of Saturday’s Triple Crown horse race. However, NYRA canceled training Thursday morning at Belmont and Saratoga Race Course upstate “due to poor air quality conditions forecast to impact New York State overnight and into Thursday morning.”

NYRA said a decision about Thursday’s live racing program, scheduled to begin at 3:05 p.m., will be made Thursday morning “following a review of the air quality conditions and forecast.”

“NYRA utilizes external weather services and advanced on-site equipment to monitor weather conditions and air quality in and around Belmont Park,” spokesman Patrick McKenna said Wednesday. “Training was conducted normally today, and NYRA will continue to assess the overall environment to ensure the safety of training and racing throughout the Belmont Stakes Racing Festival.”

New York’s NFL teams, the Giants and Jets, both had Wednesday off from offseason workouts. The Giants had been planning to practice inside Thursday, and the Jets said they are also likely to work out indoors Thursday.

Youth sports in the area were also affected, with parents quick to voice concern about their children’s safety outdoors.

In a statement Wednesday, the New Jersey State Interscholastic Athletic Association said schools should understand that all schedules were subject to change.

“NJSIAA is closely monitoring air quality data across New Jersey and local/state health advisories. As start times for athletic events draw near, we will make decisions for each venue and sport based on currently available information,” the organization said.

It’s not the first time in recent years that wildfires forced changes to the MLB schedule. A two-game series in Seattle between the Mariners and Giants was moved to San Francisco in September 2020 because of poor air quality caused by West Coast wildfires.

About an hour after Wednesday night’s game at Yankee Stadium was postponed, two fans visiting on vacation from Vancouver, British Columbia, were still lingering outside the ballpark.

“It’s just circumstances. What do I say? It makes me disappointed because this is one of the highlights of the trip,” said Malcolm, who was in town with his daughter and didn’t want to give his last name.

“I have a heart condition. That’s the only reason I’m wearing two masks and whatever. And my personal thought is that, why wasn’t it canceled two days ago? Because we knew about all this two days ago. But having said that, I don’t want the players running around and putting out in this, too. It can’t be good for them.”