Mariners let one slip away in 9th
SAN DIEGO (AP) - Late, dramatic wins for the San Diego Padres at Petco Park are starting to become routine.
Nick Hundley's sacrifice fly capped a two-run ninth inning to lift the Padres to a 4-3 win over the Seattle Mariners on Friday night.
It was San Diego's seventh win at home this season that was decided in the ninth inning or later, including four that ended on home runs. It was also the second time in less than two weeks that Hundley has supplied the game-winning swing.
"If you look at the whole (ninth) inning, it's a microcosm of where we are at," Hundley said. "We had five great at-bats just to get to me, just to give me the opportunity."
The late-inning loss was all-too familiar for the Mariners, who have lost 15 games in their opponents' last at-bats, including nine game-ending hits.
"When we have a chance to win, we've got to go out and win," said Seattle closer David Aardsma. "I'm the last one holding them up and obviously, I haven't done the job as well as I need to."
The victory allowed San Diego to pull into a first-place tie in the NL West with the Los Angeles Dodgers, who lost 10-1 against the Los Angeles Angels on Friday night.
Pinch hitter Will Venable led off the ninth with a single off Aardsma (0-4). He advanced to second on a David Eckstein's sacrifice. Aardsma then hit Headley to bring up Adrian Gonzalez, who doubled into the right-field corner to score Venable and tie the game 3-3.
Scott Hairston was walked intentionally to load the bases before Hundley lifted a fly ball to medium-deep right field. Ichiro Suzuki's throw was not in time to catch Headley, who scored standing up.
"I was just looking for something to drive there," Hundley said. "He threw me a fastball out over the plate that I could get out to the outfield."
Said Aardsma: "I have to go out there and get outs, and I didn't. That two-strike pitch to Venable, I left it up. If I get that out, they don't have much going that inning."
Aardsma blew a save opportunity for the fourth time this season.
Seattle lost its fourth straight and for the sixth time in seven games.