It's not often that the San Diego Padres can win when they only manage to score one run. It's even less often that they benefit from as stellar a pitching performance as Tyson Ross turned in on Sunday at Chase Field.
Ross improved to 2-4 on the season with a masterful eight-inning outing, leading the Padres to a 1-0 victory over the Arizona Diamondbacks. For San Diego, it was just their third shutout of the season, and it came just in time to clinch a winning road trip with a 6-4 mark through St. Louis, Milwaukee, and Arizona.
Ross, back in the starting rotation after stints on the DL and in the bullpen, gave up just three hits, walked one, fanned seven, and saw his ERA plummet from 3.35 to 2.90. He has never tossed a complete game in 26 career starts, but surely this ranks as one of the best, if not the best, start of his career. Last season, he was a dismal 2-11 with a 6.50 ERA in 13 starts with the Oakland A's.
D-backs leadoff man Adam Eaton was impressed with Ross' outing:
"When your heater, your changeup and your slider all come out of your hand like a fastball, it's difficult to pick up," Eaton said. "Hats off to him. He hit his spots and got out of a couple jams, but we needed to put more pressure on him."
"We don't like to lose these games, it's frustrating," D-backs manager Kirk Gibson said. "Patrick threw a great game for us, but we didn't capitalize on our chance to keep the game going. They got their guy in, we didn't."
The only run of the game came in the first inning. Chase Headley slammed a rare triple, and Carlos Quentin singled him home. After that point it was all pitching; the Friars managed only five more hits, the D-backs only three total. And how's this for pitching: in the last two games, Padres' hurlers have held Arizona bats to nine hits, and 0-for-11 with RISP.
Huston Street slammed the door with a 1-2-3 ninth, earning his 19th save. Arizona starter Patrick Corbin was the hard-luck loser, absorbing just his second loss of the season to fall to 12-2. He was so sharp that of his 102 pitches, 75 were strikes. Like Ross, he worked eight frames, gave up six hits, recorded eight K's, and walked none.
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