Padilla, in danger of being bumped from the rotation with another poor start, pitched six shutout innings and the Pirates' leaky defense helped three runs score in the Phillies' 5-0 victory Wednesday night.
First baseman Daryle Ward's throwing error to the plate on Michaels' grounder and reliever Rick White's wild pitch scored two more runs, and Tomas Perez added an RBI double. Perez started only because shortstop Jimmy Rollins was a late scratch with a sore left hand.
Padilla (4-8) ended a three-game losing streak and won for the first time in five road starts by limiting Pittsburgh to four hits over six scoreless but adventuresome innings. He stranded two runners in each of his final three innings.
"I thought that was the most consistent he's been all season with his velocity," manager Charlie Manuel said of Padilla, whose fastball regularly hit 95 mph. "That's got to help him, they had runners on base and he didn't give up any runs."
"That's him at his best," Wagner said of Padilla, a 14-game winner in 2002 and 2003 who has won only 11 games the last two seasons. "When he's ready to pitch, he can do that to a lot of teams. It's something that's been overdue."
The day before, Manuel warned pitching-staff changes might come during the All-Star break. Padilla was the likely candidate to be dropped from the rotation after giving up 12 runs and 25 hits in 12 1/3 innings in his three consecutive losses.
With Padilla making his best start since shutting out the Reds for six innings in a 4-3 victory May 15, Philadelphia won only its fifth in 17 games. After taking two of three so far in Pittsburgh, the Phillies can win their first series in their last seven by winning Thursday night.
The Pirates lost their seventh in nine games and are 6-17 since reaching .500 by beating Tampa Bay 18-2 on June 11. Mark Redman's loss was the eighth by a Pittsburgh starting pitcher in nine decisions, with the only win coming on Kip Wells' four-hit shutout Tuesday night.
Redman (4-8) lost his fourth in a row despite giving up only three hits in six-plus innings, getting little support offensively or defensively. In his 11 starts the Pirates have lost, he has gotten just 23 runs of support.
"It's unfortunate we couldn't get some runs to relax him," manager Lloyd McClendon said. "For whatever reason we have not been able to score runs for him."
Redman appeared to get out of the third without allowing a run when he got Michaels to hit a short fly, but the ball somehow fell within a glove's length of right fielder Matt Lawton, second baseman Jose Castillo and Ward.
"To give up a little blooper like that tears you up," catcher David Ross said. "We just can't seem to help him that much."
Redman politely declined to talk to reporters, possibly because he felt he also didn't get much help from plate umpire Larry Vanover. Redman and Ross were seen talking to Vanover about what they felt was an overly tight strike zone.
"I definitely talked to him," said Ross, who refused to criticize the umpiring. "We may have had a difference of opinion. But the umpires are out there busting their rear ends, too."
The Pirates had plenty of chances against Padilla, who got Ward to pop out to second baseman Chase Utley on an excellent running catch to end the fourth and Tike Redman on a fly ball with runners on second and third in the fifth. Ross struck out to end the sixth with runners on first and third.
- Sam Holbrook, scheduled to be the second base umpire, left for a family emergency and was replaced by Dusty Dellinger.
- Redman has allowed 21 runs in 24 innings during his four consecutive losses.
- Redman lost for the first time in four career decisions against Philadelphia.
- The Pirates have not won consecutive games since June 10-11.
- Wagner is happy former Astros teammate Roy Oswalt won the Internet vote for the final spot on the NL All-Star team, beating out Wagner and three other pitchers. Wagner said, "He probably should have been on there in the first place."