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Hoffman matches Smith's saves record; Peavy K's 11 as Padres beat Bucs

CBS SportsLine.com wire reports
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SAN DIEGO -- It was vintage Trevor Hoffman, from the AC/DC blaring from the stadium speakers to a final, nasty changeup dropping toward the dirt and eluding the swing of a helpless batter.

Hoffman never veers from his routines or his signature pitch, and on Saturday night he tied Lee Smith's career saves record with No. 478, helping the NL West-leading San Diego Padres beat the Pittsburgh Pirates 2-1 to build a 1 ½-game lead over the Los Angeles Dodgers.

As he has for weeks, Hoffman said the Padres' playoff push is more important that his record pursuit.

"I know I'll be more relieved when we clinch a playoff spot," Hoffman said after pitching a perfect ninth for his NL-best 42nd save in 47 chances. "And I truly mean that. I'm not trying to deflect the attention from what's going on, and there's a lot of pressure involved in a pennant drive and preserving wins, let alone what it means to a major league record."

The 38-year-old closer has never been comfortable talking about himself, so it's been easier on him with the Padres trying to make consecutive playoff appearances for the first time in club history.

"It could be extremely lonely, in a sense, to go through this process with a team that wouldn't be in it and have all the attention on something that's very individualized," he said.

Jake Peavy struck out 11 to match the team record for double-digit strikeout games, and rookie Josh Barfield hit a go-ahead homer leading off the seventh.

With the sellout crowd of 43,168 on its feet, Hoffman jogged in from the bullpen, staring at the ground the whole way, with AC/DC's Hells Bells blaring, as it has for each of his home save opportunities since July 25, 1998.

Former teammate Xavier Nady flied out to center, Ronny Paulino grounded out and Hoffman tied Smith's record when he struck out Ryan Doumit struck on his signature pitch, a changeup.

"It was nasty," catcher Rob Bowen said. "It looked like it stopped, then started again after he swung. It just dropped off the table."

Said Hoffman: "I'll get an out any way I can, as long as they don't put it in play and score a run."

The 38-year-old Hoffman has three saves in five games following his blown save in Monday night's wild, 11-10 loss in 10 innings at Los Angeles.

Smith piled up 478 saves from 1980-1997.

All but two of Hoffman's saves have come with San Diego, which obtained him from Florida on June 24, 1993, in a five-player deal that sent Gary Sheffield to the Marlins.

"I feel sorry for teams who don't have what we have," Peavy said about Hoffman.

"It's special," said Bruce Bochy, San Diego's manager since 1995. "We're seeing history. I can't say enough about what he's done for our ballclub, our organization. He's a guy I've been fortunate to have as my closer since I've been manager."

Pittsburgh's Jim Tracy was Hoffman's manager in the minor leagues when he was converted from infielder to reliever.

"It suggests consistency, it suggests resiliency," Tracy said. "That's how you get to the point where he's at."

Tracy was manager of the rival Dodgers the last five seasons.

"I learned to hate the song Hells Bells," Tracy said. "I only listen to it when I'm in San Diego."

San Diego has won eight of 11 overall and 13 of its last 15 home games.

Barfield gave San Diego a 2-1 lead when he homered to left on a 2-2 pitch from Zach Duke (10-14) in the seventh. It was the 13th of the season for Barfield, the son of former AL home run champ Jesse Barfield.

Peavy (10-14) held Pittsburgh to one run and six hits in eight innings, walking one. He reached double digits in Ks for the 15th time in his career to tie the franchise mark held by Andy Benes. It was the fifth time this season Peavy has struck out at least 10.

A night after Chris Young came within two outs of San Diego's first no-hitter, the Pirates took a quick lead against Peavy.

Chris Duffy hit a leadoff single, advanced on Jack Wilson's walk and, following a double play started by Peavy, scored on a two-out single by Nady.

San Diego tied it with two outs in the fifth when Brian Giles singled to center and scored when left fielder Jose Bautista misplayed Mike Cameron's fly ball, which bounced off the fence for a double.

Duke allowed two runs and six hits in 6 1/3 innings, walked five and struck out four.

Notes

  • Pinch-hitter Joe Randa was booed when he was announced leading off the eighth. Randa's pinch-hit, two-run homer with one out in the ninth on Friday night broke up Young's no-hitter.
 
Copyright 2014 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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The Padres' Trevor Hoffman delivers another save,  tying all-time saves leader Lee Smith with 478.  (AP)
The Padres' Trevor Hoffman delivers another save, tying all-time saves leader Lee Smith with 478. (AP)

Players of the Game
San Diego

J. Peavy
IP 8.0
H 6
ER 1
BB 1
K 11
San Diego

J. Barfield
AB 4
R 1
H 2
HR 1
RBI 1
 
Pittsburgh Pirates
Chris Duffy, CF4120010 .247
Jack Wilson, SS3000121 .270
Freddy Sanchez, 3B4000002 .342
Xavier Nady, RF4011020 .280
Ronny Paulino, C4010021 .312
Ryan Doumit, 1B4010010 .205
Jose Bautista, LF3000022 .239
Jose Castillo, 2B3010002 .257
Zach Duke, P2000021 .197
    Matt Capps, P0000000 .000
    John Grabow, P0000000 .000
   a- Joe Randa, PH1000000 .261
    Damaso Marte, P0000000 .000
Totals321611129 
a-flied out for Grabow in the 8th
Batting
RBI - Xavier Nady (60)
2-OUT RBI - Xavier Nady (20)
SB - Chris Duffy (24, 2nd base off Peavy/Piazza)
Team LOB - 5
Fielding
E - Jack Wilson (17, )
Pittsburgh Pirates
Zach Duke (L,10-14) 6.1622541 4.44
Matt Capps 0.1000000 3.92
John Grabow 0.1000010 4.24
Damaso Marte 1000020 3.81
IBB - Alexander by Zach Duke
Pitches-Strikes - Zach Duke 96-54, Matt Capps 2-1, John Grabow 5-3, Damaso Marte 11-9
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Zach Duke 9-6
Batters Faced - Zach Duke 30, Matt Capps 1, John Grabow 1, Damaso Marte 3
San Diego Padres
Josh Barfield, 2B4121000 .285
Brian Giles, RF4110002 .267
Mike Cameron, CF3021100 .268
Mike Piazza, C4000005 .279
    Rob Bowen, C0000000 .225
Adrian Gonzalez, 1B3010111 .301
Ben Johnson, LF3000122 .250
Todd Walker, 3B3000012 .282
    Geoff Blum, 3B1000010 .252
Manny Alexander, SS3000111 .188
Jake Peavy, P2000112 .172
    Trevor Hoffman, P0000000 .000
Totals302625715 
Batting
2B - Mike Cameron (33, Duke), Adrian Gonzalez (36, Duke)
HR - Josh Barfield (13, Duke)
RBI - Josh Barfield (56), Mike Cameron (76)
2-OUT RBI - Mike Cameron (33)
SB - Mike Cameron (25, 2nd base off Grabow/Paulino)
Team LOB - 9
Fielding
DP - Peavy-Alexander-Gonzalez
E - Jake Peavy (2, )
San Diego Padres
Jake Peavy (W,10-14) 86111110 4.13
Trevor Hoffman (S,42) 1000010 1.98
Pitches-Strikes - Jake Peavy 112-84, Trevor Hoffman 12-8
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Jake Peavy 6-6, Trevor Hoffman 1-1
Batters Faced - Jake Peavy 30, Trevor Hoffman 3
Game Information
Attendance - 43168
Game Time - 2:16
Temperature - 69
Umpires - Home - Bruce Froemming, First Base - Paul Emmel, Second Base - Brian Runge, Third Base - Mike Winters