Clemens burned by Gyorko homers, Padres lose again
Jul. 21, 2016
ST. LOUIS (AP) — Paul Clemens got hurt on two fastballs to the St. Louis Cardinals' hottest hitter. So much for being macho.
After a 3-2 loss fueled by two homers and all three RBIs from Jedd Gyorko that gave the Cardinals a doubleheader sweep over the San Diego Padres on Wednesday night, Clemens said in the future he would try to be "more of a businessman and not a fighter."
"Sometimes I want to bow my chest out and just come right after guys and that feels good to a man, to be able to challenge people and hold my own," the 28-year-old Clemens said. "Business-wise, it's not a good pitch."
Given another opportunity, he said he'd go with the curveball.
"Get him out or walk him and make the next guy beat you," said Clemens, who allowed three runs in five innings. "No harm, no foul."
Padres pitchers have surrendered homers to Gyorko five straight games.
Dealt by the Padres in the offseason for outfielder Jon Jay, he is 13 for 21 (.619) against his old team with six homers and 10 RBIs. He has 11 homers and 27 RBIs on the year with 40 starts spread across the infield. He started at third base both games of the doubleheader.
"We've consistently put the ball right in his wheelhouse," manager Andy Green said. "I don't think it's a matter of the game plan being wrong, it's just not executing them at all and he's taken advantage of it and pretty much had a season against us so far."
Gyorko has four consecutive three-hit games against San Diego and four career multi-homer games.
Carlos Martinez (9-6) was dominant after a shaky first inning and a nosebleed in the second, and the Cardinals took the opener 4-2. Gyorko, Matt Holliday and Yadier Molina homered off Colin Rea (5-4).
The Cardinals, just 23-28 at home, go for a four-game sweep Thursday night with ace Adam Wainwright facing Andrew Cashner.
Ryan Schimpf homered in both games for San Diego with his sixth and seventh of the season.
All 11 runs in the twin bill scored on homers.
Jaime Garcia (7-6) allowed a run in 5 2-3 innings in the second game and Seung Hwan Oh earned his fourth save in five chances, and second of the day.
The Padres had two on and no outs in the fifth but failed to execute on a safety squeeze when Travis Jankowski tapped back to the mound, giving Garcia time to throw to the plate for a tag.
The previous at-bat, Clemens failed to sacrifice with runners on first and third and ended up striking out for the first out.
"I get that bunt down, we have a chance to win," Clemens said. "And if I don't get stubborn in that fifth inning we have a chance to win."
Only 11,191 fans were in the seats for the opener, rescheduled from a rainout on Tuesday night. Attendance was 41,012 for the finale.
Martinez's nosebleed halted the opener for about 12 minutes but turned out to be just a minor issue. The right-hander was even better once trainers stopped the bleeding with cotton balls and petroleum jelly.
San Diego opened with Jankowski's double and Schimpf's two-run homer but had just two more hits off Martinez. After play resumed, he retired 11 of his next 12 batters.
Aledmys Diaz had two hits and has reached safely in 23 consecutive games, longest by a rookie this season. He is 13 for 19 against San Diego with a homer and four RBIs.
Rea had been 2-0 with a 3.68 ERA in his previous four starts. He allowed four runs in six innings in his first outing in two weeks.
Matt Kemp's 20th of the year gave San Diego a homer in 18 consecutive games, extending a franchise record and the NL's longest streak since the Reds had an 18-game run in 2010. The Cardinals have homered in a season-best 11 straight games, totaling 23 in that time.
Padres: C Christian Bethancourt took a foul ball off his right knee guard in the seventh of the opener but finished without issues. Derek Norris played the second game.
Padres: Cashner (4-7, 5.05) has lost two of his last three starts.
Cardinals: Wainwright (9-5, 4.19) is coming off a three-hit shutout against the Marlins and has allowed one run in his last 23 innings.