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Arizona at San Diego

San Diego
W: C. Vargas (10-8) L: M. Thompson (3-4)
S: T. Pena (1)
HR: ARI - None   SD - None

Diamondbacks snuff out late rally by Padres, go over .500 mark with win

CBS SportsLine.com wire reports

SAN DIEGO -- Claudio Vargas hit the ball as hard as any Padres batter did on Saturday.

His pitching was pretty good, too.

The Arizona right-hander combined with three relievers on a five-hitter and helped himself with a two-run double, and the Diamondbacks escaped a big ninth-inning jam to beat San Diego 5-3 on Saturday.

Asked if he were happier about the hit than his pitching, Vargas smiled and said: "Both, man."

The Diamondbacks popped back above .500 and regained sole possession of second place in the moribund NL West. The Diamondbacks and Padres entered the day tied for second in the division and a game behind Cincinnati in the NL wild-card race.

The Diamondbacks, though, still have their eyes on the division title.

"That's what I think we have to do if we want to win the division, is play like we did today," Vargas said. "Good pitching, good defense and big hits."

For the Diamondbacks, Vargas' hit was definitely the biggest.

Vargas came in with only three hits this year, but two were doubles. He hit another one with two outs in the fifth to give the Diamondbacks a 2-0 lead.

Padres rookie Mike Thompson (3-4), making an emergency start for Clay Hensley, had faced just one batter over the minimum until center fielder Mike Cameron misplayed Orlando Hudson's fly ball into a double with one out in the fifth. After Stephen Drew struck out, catcher Chris Snyder was intentionally walked to get to Vargas. The pitcher promptly doubled into the gap in left-center.

"That's my second time they walk the catcher and I got a base hit," Vargas said. "He threw me a fastball up and in the middle of the plate. That's the first two runs of the game."

Manager Bob Melvin was impressed.

"That was a huge hit at the time," Melvin said. "He hasn't done much for us offensively this year. But as well as Thompson was pitching and we weren't getting good swings, then all of a sudden he gets the hit, drives in a couple of runs and obviously it's a big momentum shift for us.

"Then to continue to pitch the way he did as long as he did, was a pick-me-up."

The inconsistent Padres, who beat the Diamondbacks 8-2 on Friday night, managed only three hits and one run off Vargas (10-8) in seven innings. He struck out five and walked two in his third straight strong start.

"Early in the game we had a tough time figuring out Vargas," Padres manager Bruce Bochy said. "We didn't hit any balls hard."

Brandon Lyon allowed one hit in the eighth and closer Jorge Julio walked the bases loaded with two outs in the ninth before making way for rookie Tony Pena. Pena gave up an infield RBI single to Geoff Blum and walked pinch-hitter Mike Piazza before striking out Mark Bellhorn for his first career save.

The defending NL West champion Padres lost for the ninth time in 12 games. The Padres are hitting .196 in the first six games of a 10-game homestand against NL West opponents.

"We didn't play well today; offensively, defensively," Bochy said. "We were shabby out there."

The Diamondbacks scored two more runs in the sixth, on Drew's single and a wild pitch by Doug Brocail.

Drew doubled in the ninth and eventually scored on Eric Byrnes' sacrifice fly.

Hensley felt pain in his left buttocks in recent days, so Thompson was summoned Friday night from Las Vegas. He was preparing to fly to Portland, Ore., where he had been scheduled to start Saturday night for the Triple-A Beavers. It was the fourth time Thompson was brought up this year.

He allowed four runs and six hits in 5 2/3 innings, walked three and struck out two.

San Diego got its run in the fifth when Todd Walker tripled to right-center with one out and scored on Blum's sacrifice fly.


  • Vargas has a 1.86 ERA in his last three starts, having allowed four earned runs and 15 hits in 19 1/3 innings.
  • Padres SS Khalil Greene was placed on the 15-day disabled list with a strained left middle finger.
Copyright 2017 by STATS LLC and The Associated Press. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC and The Associated Press is strictly prohibited.
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Diamondbacks pitcher Claudio Vargas allows one run and strikes out five in seven innings.  (AP)
Diamondbacks pitcher Claudio Vargas allows one run and strikes out five in seven innings. (AP)

Players of the Game

C. Vargas
IP 7.0
H 3
ER 1
BB 2
K 5

S. Drew
AB 4
R 1
H 2
HR 0

Related Video

February 17, 2017
NL West Preview: Arizona Diamondbacks (2:12)
Arizona Diamondbacks
Eric Byrnes, CF3001100 .277
Chad Tracy, 3B5010003 .276
    Jorge Julio, P0000000 .000
    Tony Pena, P0000000 .000
Luis Gonzalez, LF4010001 .281
Conor Jackson, 1B3110101 .284
    Brandon Lyon, P0000000 .000
    Damion Easley, 3B0000000 .218
Shawn Green, RF-1B4010000 .283
Orlando Hudson, 2B4210002 .281
Stephen Drew, SS4121021 .317
Chris Snyder, C2100101 .295
Claudio Vargas, P3012000 .098
    Carlos Quentin, RF0000000 .250
2B - Orlando Hudson (26, M. Thompson), Stephen Drew (10, Adkins), Claudio Vargas (3, M. Thompson)
SF - Eric Byrnes (2)
SH - Chris Snyder (1)
RBI - Eric Byrnes (53), Stephen Drew (15), Claudio Vargas 2 (4)
2-OUT RBI - Stephen Drew (9), Claudio Vargas 2 (2)
Team LOB - 6
DP - Jackson-Drew-Vargas
Arizona Diamondbacks
Claudio Vargas (W,10-8) 7311250 4.89
Brandon Lyon (H,23) 1100000 3.79
Jorge Julio 0.2022310 4.29
Tony Pena (S,1) 0.1100110 2.95
Pitches-Strikes - Claudio Vargas 106-62, Brandon Lyon 14-9, Jorge Julio 28-10, Tony Pena 17-11
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Claudio Vargas 5-9, Brandon Lyon 2-1
Batters Faced - Claudio Vargas 24, Brandon Lyon 4, Jorge Julio 5, Tony Pena 3
San Diego Padres
Dave Roberts, LF4000001 .304
Mike Cameron, CF2110210 .266
Brian Giles, RF4000012 .269
Adrian Gonzalez, 1B4010021 .293
Josh Bard, C3100101 .321
Todd Walker, 3B-2B2110200 .279
Geoff Blum, SS3012001 .248
Josh Barfield, 2B2000010 .282
    Doug Brocail, P0000000 .000
   a- Rob Bowen, PH1000000 .253
    Jon Adkins, P0000000 .000
   b- Mike Piazza, PH0001100 .283
    Ben Johnson, PR0000000 .242
Mike Thompson, P1000000 .158
    Mark Bellhorn, 3B3010023 .192
a-grounded out for Brocail in the 8th
b-walked for Adkins in the 9th
2B - Mark Bellhorn (10, Lyon)
3B - Todd Walker (2, Vargas)
SF - Geoff Blum (2)
RBI - Geoff Blum 2 (20), Mike Piazza (52)
2-OUT RBI - Geoff Blum (9), Mike Piazza (19)
CS - Mike Cameron (5, 2nd base by Vargas/Snyder)
Team LOB - 6
DP - M. Thompson-Blum-Gonzalez, Walker-Blum-Gonzalez
San Diego Padres
Mike Thompson (L,3-4) 5.2644320 4.40
Doug Brocail 2.1100000 5.03
Jon Adkins 1111000 3.80
IBB - Snyder by Mike Thompson
HBP - Quentin (by Jon Adkins)
WP - Doug Brocail (1)
Pitches-Strikes - Mike Thompson 92-50, Doug Brocail 37-22, Jon Adkins 17-8
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Mike Thompson 11-3, Doug Brocail 3-4, Jon Adkins 2-1
Batters Faced - Mike Thompson 25, Doug Brocail 8, Jon Adkins 5
Game Information
Attendance - 34250
Game Time - 2:56
Temperature - 73
Umpires - Home - Alfonso Marquez, First Base - Tom Hallion, Second Base - Mike Everitt, Third Base - Larry Young