Houston at San Diego

Houston (23-34) «0150100007110
San Diego (24-33)002000200463

Astros 7, Padres 4

CBSSports.com wire reports

SAN DIEGO -- Pitching and defense were supposed to carry the offensively challenged San Diego Padres this year.

Two months into the season, though, the Padres look nothing like the spot-on team of 2010, which set a franchise record and were second in the majors with a .988 fielding percentage.

Chris Johnson homered and the Houston Astros used a five-run third inning to beat the sloppy Padres 7-4 on Thursday in a matchup of the NL's two worst teams.

The Astros (23-34), last in the NL Central, have won the first four games of a seven-game trip, their longest winning streak of the season. The Padres (24-33), last in the NL West, dropped to 9-21 at home, worst in the NL. They came in hitting a major league-worst .199 at home.

The Padres had three errors that helped the Astros score five runs in the third inning. San Diego has 46 errors, second in the majors to Houston's 47.

"I'm surprised," manager Bud Black said. "I thought our defense would be much crisper."

The Astros didn't have any trouble with spacious Petco Park. Johnson homered to left on a 1-0 pitch from Tim Stauffer (1-4) with one out in the fifth for a 7-2 lead. It was Johnson's sixth. That helped make a winner of Bud Norris (3-4).

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Norris went six-plus innings, allowing four runs and six hits while striking out six and walking two. Mark Melancon pitched the ninth for his fifth save in seven chances.

The Astros had 11 hits. Hunter Pence extended his hitting streak to 14 games with a third-inning single.

Houston jumped on San Diego for five runs on just three hits in the third, when the Padres committed the three errors, including a catcher's interference. The first four Astros reached and scored, and Houston sent 10 men to the plate.

Carlos Lee had an RBI double and Brett Wallace an RBI groundout. J.R. Towles was credited with an RBI when shortstop Jason Bartlett bobbled his slow grounder, allowing Towles to reach and Lee to score. Norris drove in a run with a fielder's choice and another run scored on the play on second baseman Logan Forsythe.

"From the get-go, I didn't execute from the first couple of hitters who got on and put the ball in play," Stauffer said. "One of those innings you want to forget about, one of those bad innings."

Johnson also had an RBI single in the second.

Stauffer allowed seven runs, five earned, on eight hits in five innings, struck out four and walked two.

The Padres got consecutive RBI singles by Chase Headley, who extended his hitting streak to 12 games, and Ryan Ludwick in the third, and consecutive sacrifice flies by pinch-hitter Chris Denorfia and Eric Patterson in the seventh.


The Padres said nearly 1,000 season-ticket holders donated their tickets to military members and their families. Of those, 32 were in the Sony Home Plate Club, which at $325 are the most expensive seats at Petco Park. ... Black said C Nick Hundley, on the disabled list because of a strained muscle in his right side, will do drills on Friday and if everything goes well, will begin a rehab assignment at Triple-A Tucson. ... It was the seventh straight road game in which the Astros have 10 or more hits.

Copyright 2015 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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Players of the Game

C. Johnson
AB 4
R 2
H 2
HR 1
San Diego

C. Headley
AB 3
R 0
H 1
HR 0

Related Video

Houston Astros
Michael Bourn, CF4010113 .272
Clint Barmes, SS5110006 .224
Hunter Pence, RF5110020 .315
Carlos Lee, LF4121121 .261
    Wilton Lopez, P0000000 .000
    Mark Melancon, P0000000 .000
Jeff Keppinger, 2B4210002 .385
Brett Wallace, 1B4021100 .320
Chris Johnson, 3B4222113 .223
J.R. Towles, C4011012 .200
Bud Norris, P2001002 .100
    Jeff Fulchino, P0000000 .000
    Jason Michaels, LF1000010 .150
2B - Carlos Lee (12, Stauffer), Brett Wallace (15, Frieri)
HR - Chris Johnson (6, Stauffer)
SH - Bud Norris 2 (5)
RBI - Carlos Lee (28), Brett Wallace (18), Chris Johnson 2 (27), J.R. Towles (7), Bud Norris (3)
Team LOB - 12
Houston Astros
Bud Norris (W,3-4) 6644260 3.95
Jeff Fulchino 1000000 4.07
Wilton Lopez (H,7) 1000010 2.74
Mark Melancon (S,5) 1000120 1.91
Pitches-Strikes - Bud Norris 111-70, Jeff Fulchino 11-5, Wilton Lopez 12-9, Mark Melancon 16-9
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Bud Norris 1-11, Wilton Lopez 1-1
Batters Faced - Bud Norris 26, Jeff Fulchino 3, Wilton Lopez 3, Mark Melancon 4
San Diego Padres
Eric Patterson, RF3001011 .175
Jason Bartlett, SS3100110 .245
Chase Headley, 3B3011120 .275
Ryan Ludwick, LF4011001 .252
Brad Hawpe, 1B4010012 .239
Blake Tekotte, CF3000111 .176
Kyle Phillips, C4110011 .211
Logan Forsythe, 2B4110011 .167
Tim Stauffer, P1110000 .150
   a- Aaron Cunningham, PH1000000 .000
    Ernesto Frieri, P0000000 .000
   b- Chris Denorfia, PH0001000 .309
    Pat Neshek, P0000000 .000
    Chad Qualls, P0000000 .000
   c- Jorge Cantu, PH1000011 .195
a-flied out for Stauffer in the 5th
b-hit a sacrifice fly for Frieri in the 7th
c-struck out for Qualls in the 9th
2B - Kyle Phillips (2, Norris)
SF - Eric Patterson (2), Chris Denorfia (1)
RBI - Eric Patterson (8), Chase Headley (20), Ryan Ludwick (36), Chris Denorfia (8)
2-OUT RBI - Chase Headley (10), Ryan Ludwick (7)
SB - Logan Forsythe (1, 2nd base off Fulchino/Towles)
Team LOB - 5
E - Jason Bartlett (10, Misplayed grounder), Logan Forsythe (2, Throwing), Kyle Phillips (2, Interference)
San Diego Padres
Tim Stauffer (L,1-4) 5875241 3.99
Ernesto Frieri 2200110 1.86
Pat Neshek 1100120 1.98
Chad Qualls 1000010 2.08
IBB - Johnson by Tim Stauffer
HBP - Bourn (by Tim Stauffer), Towles (by Ernesto Frieri)
Pitches-Strikes - Tim Stauffer 103-60, Ernesto Frieri 41-23, Pat Neshek 18-10, Chad Qualls 13-9
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Tim Stauffer 8-4, Ernesto Frieri 3-2, Chad Qualls 2-0
Batters Faced - Tim Stauffer 28, Ernesto Frieri 10, Pat Neshek 5, Chad Qualls 3
Game Information
Attendance - 16635
Game Time - 3:02
Temperature - 66
Umpires - Home - Gerry Davis, First Base - Greg Gibson, Second Base - Todd Tichenor, Third Base - Sam Holbrook