Chicago at San Diego

Scoreboard
Chi. Cubs (73-86) «000000001160
San Diego (88-71)000000000030

Padres on brink of elimination after loss to Cubs

CBSSports.com wire reports
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SAN DIEGO -- The San Diego Padres held their annual "Shirts Off Their Backs" fundraising raffle Thursday, when fans walked away with players' jerseys after the final regular-season home game.

The Padres might as well have offered the bats out of their hands. When they needed it most, their offense simply wasn't there.

Held to only three singles, the Padres lost 1-0 to the Chicago Cubs and were pushed to the brink of elimination from the playoff race. Brad Snyder, a 28-year-old rookie who was called up from Triple-A less than a month ago, hit an opposite-field RBI single off All-Star closer Heath Bell with one out in the ninth inning.

More on Padres at Giants

The loss reduced San Francisco's magic number for clinching the NL West to one and idle Atlanta's magic number for clinching the NL wild card to two.

The Padres trail the Giants by three games going into the final three-game series at San Francisco.

"Man, it just hasn't been very good," All-Star slugger Adrian Gonzalez said about the offense. "We've got to find a way to be very good for three days. That's all it takes. We struggled to get runners on base, we struggled to bring them across the board. Our pitching's done everything possible to put us in a position where we should be celebrating right now, and we haven't.

"Plain and simple, we've got to hit," he said. "We've hit balls good. We just haven't found holes."

San Diego, which started the season with the second-lowest payroll in the majors, led the NL West for much of the summer until staggering down the stretch. The Padres have lost 22 of 34 games since Aug. 25, when they were 76-49 and had a 6½-game lead on the Giants in the NL West.

In their somber clubhouse, the Padres kept saying they can win three straight. But to simply force a one-game playoff for the division title, they'll have to get past Matt Cain, Barry Zito and Jonathan Sanchez. Sanchez no-hit San Diego in 2009. San Francisco's manager, Bruce Bochy, was forced out as San Diego's skipper after the Padres lost to St. Louis in the first round of the 2006 playoffs.

San Diego has won 10 of 15 games against the Giants this season.

"We're not done," Ryan Ludwick said. "Everyone in here knows it's not going to be easy, but it's not impossible.

"I think it's disappointing the fact we haven't played our best baseball at times this month," he said.. "But everyone who goes out there is giving their best effort. It's tough. We all take our job very seriously. We want to win. We want to perform. Unfortunately, as of late, it's been kind of a rough go."

It's the first time the Padres have trailed by three games since April 17. The Padres are two games behind Atlanta, which will close with a home series against the NL East champion Philadelphia Phillies.

San Diego has scored only 2.79 runs per game in its past 34 games. They've been shut out five times in that span, including two 1-0 losses in this four-game series. They scored only five runs on 17 hits in losing three of four to the Cubs. They had no hits after the second inning Thursday.

"We just can't get anything going as a group," manager Bud Black said. "And there's really not one guy out there having a great month or a great few weeks. There's no way to explain it. It's sort of a team-wide funk that's sort of been there since late August. We're not swinging it."

Aramis Ramirez started the Cubs' ninth with a broken-bat single to right-center off Bell (6-1) and was replaced by pinch-runner Darwin Barney. Xavier Nady laid down a sacrifice bunt and Barney scored on Snyder's single to left.

"It's nice to get that hit," said Snyder, who was playing in his ninth big league game and making his third start, in right field. "I've been trying to do something, trying to help out somehow, some way. I'm glad I got a big hit in a big situation.

"I'm not going to lie. I've been nervous every time out," Snyder said. "I'm trying to slow myself down. It's hard sometimes. Surprisingly, I wasn't really thinking about much that last at-bat."

Cubs interim manager Mike Quade said Nady sacrificed on his own.

"We need to give credit to X right now," Quade said. "He hasn't had a lot of success against Bell. It was a team decision for him. Then, on top of that he lays down a perfect bunt. That was the definition of sacrifice."

Sean Marshall (7-5) got two outs in the eighth for the victory. Carlos Marmol pitched a perfect ninth for his 37th save in 42 chances.

San Diego's Jon Garland held Chicago to four hits in 6 1/3 scoreless innings, struck out eight and walked one. Chicago's Tom Gorzelanny allowed three hits in six scoreless innings, walked four and struck out three.

Notes

  • The game started after a 22-minute rain delay.
  • The crowd of 28,576 gave the Padres a final home attendance of 2,131,774.
  • The Cubs have surrendered three or fewer runs in 13 consecutive road games dating to Sept. 10, the longest streak by the franchise since 1920.
 
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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After yet another excruciating loss to the Cubs, the Padres are staring elimination in the face.  (AP)
After yet another excruciating loss to the Cubs, the Padres are staring elimination in the face. (AP)

Players of the Game
Chicago

T. Gorzelanny
IP 6.0
H 3
ER 0
BB 4
K 3
San Diego

J. Garland
IP 6.1
H 4
ER 0
BB 1
K 8
 

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Chicago Cubs
HittersABRHRBIBBSOLOBAVG
Blake DeWitt, 2B4020000 .263
Starlin Castro, SS4000022 .298
Marlon Byrd, CF4000012 .294
Aramis Ramirez, 3B4010012 .242
    Darwin Barney, PR-3B0100000 .246
Xavier Nady, 1B3010010 .251
Brad Snyder, RF4011021 .278
Alfonso Soriano, LF3000112 .254
    Carlos Marmol, P0000000 .000
Koyie Hill, C3010121 .216
Tom Gorzelanny, P2000012 .125
   a- Bobby Scales, PH1000012 .200
    Andrew Cashner, P0000000 .000
    Sean Marshall, P0000000 .000
    Sam Fuld, LF0000000 .174
Totals32161212  
a-struck out for Gorzelanny in the 7th
Batting
2B - Blake DeWitt (24, Garland)
SH - Xavier Nady (1)
RBI - Brad Snyder (5)
Team LOB - 7
Fielding
DP - Castro-Nady
Chicago Cubs
PitchersIPHRERBBSOHRERA
Tom Gorzelanny 6300430 4.09
Andrew Cashner 1.1000020 4.89
Sean Marshall (W,7-5) 0.2000010 2.68
Carlos Marmol (S,37) 1000020 2.58
IBB - Gonzalez by Tom Gorzelanny
Pitches-Strikes - Tom Gorzelanny 89-49, Andrew Cashner 18-12, Sean Marshall 8-6, Carlos Marmol 16-11
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Tom Gorzelanny 7-6, Sean Marshall 1-0, Carlos Marmol 1-0
Batters Faced - Tom Gorzelanny 23, Andrew Cashner 4, Sean Marshall 2, Carlos Marmol 3
San Diego Padres
HittersABRHRBIBBSOLOBAVG
Will Venable, CF4000031 .250
David Eckstein, 2B3010100 .267
Miguel Tejada, SS3000101 .269
Adrian Gonzalez, 1B3000111 .296
Ryan Ludwick, RF4000023 .255
Yorvit Torrealba, C3010010 .279
Aaron Cunningham, LF3000011 .282
Chase Headley, 3B3010000 .262
Jon Garland, P1000101 .214
    Luke Gregerson, P0000000 .000
    Mike Adams, P0000000 .000
   a- Chris Denorfia, PH1000000 .264
    Heath Bell, P0000000 .000
Totals2803048  
a-lined out for Adams in the 8th
Batting
SB - David Eckstein (8, 2nd base off Gorzelanny/Hill)
CS - Yorvit Torrealba (5, 2nd base by Gorzelanny/Hill)
Team LOB - 5
San Diego Padres
PitchersIPHRERBBSOHRERA
Jon Garland 6.1400180 3.47
Luke Gregerson 0.2000120 3.21
Mike Adams 1000010 1.80
Heath Bell (L,6-1) 1211010 1.86
Pitches-Strikes - Jon Garland 95-64, Luke Gregerson 14-8, Mike Adams 13-9, Heath Bell 16-12
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Jon Garland 3-8, Mike Adams 1-1, Heath Bell 1-1
Batters Faced - Jon Garland 24, Luke Gregerson 3, Mike Adams 3, Heath Bell 5
Game Information
Attendance - 28576
Game Time - 2:48
Temperature - 69
Umpires - Home - Sam Holbrook, First Base - Greg Gibson, Second Base - Gerry Davis, Third Base - Alfonso Marquez