This high wouldn’t last forever.
Joe Musgrove didn’t go five innings for the first time this season, a revamped Padres lineup went scoreless through the first five innings and the comeback fell short in a 7-3 loss to the Rockies, snapping a five-game hitting streak in the middle of a dizzying week.
“Things just didn’t go our way,” Padres third baseman Manny Machado said. “It had been headed our way for several days. It can’t be like that all season.”
Maybe not, but it sure felt like it.
The Padres had never won four times in a five-game streak, let alone swept such a streak, when their deadline acquisitions — led by Juan Soto — appeared to help them overcome Tuesday’s doubleheader and Wednesday beat a Colorado team that had won eight of the first 11 meetings this season.
But the bad luck that has dogged them this year against the Rockies returned Thursday at Petco Park.
Brandon Drury watched helplessly as Sam Hilliard soared over the wall to rob him of a two-run homer in the second inning. Soto grounded into a 109 mph double play after Machado walked to open the fourth. The next inning, Machado got a just under 103 mph drive to left field on a ball that again landed safely in Hilliard’s glove to leave the bases loaded.
At the time something went their way — Soto’s gift triple landed between center fielder Jonathan Daza and right fielder Charlie Blackmon to start a two-run rally in the sixth — the Rockies had built a 6-0 lead off left-hander Kyle Freeland.
“I thought we had good hitting off Freeland all day,” Drury said. “Just some balls were hit really hard straight at guys. We just couldn’t get anything going.”
Bad luck also had something to do with this hole.
Ryan McMahon’s 110 mph double in the third followed an 86 mph single by Brian Severn and a 79 mph single by Blackmon, both to left. A 61-mph single by Blackmon and an RBI double that plated Soto to right set up McMahon’s three-run homer to center on a 106-mph line in the fifth.
Overall, Musgrove struck out six but allowed a season-high six runs on eight hits and a walk in 4 2/3 innings in his first start since finalizing a five-year, $100 million extension on Monday.
It was also his first start on four days rest in two months, something to think about as he tries to iron out what was missing in his last four starts (7.29 ERA).
“Right now in the year, I’m at the point where I don’t feel good about the execution,” Musgrove said after throwing just 68 of his 101 pitches. “I feel a little inconsistent. Every season comes at some point. It’s just… you have to try to find a way out of it. I’m still competing. I’m not far away. I watch the video and it’s hard for me to see what looks different. But there’s something wrong there and we’re going to work hard this week to figure it out and get back on track.”
The new look attack failed to make it back into the game.
Rookie Josh Bell followed Soto’s triple to lead off the sixth with a single to right field for the Padres’ first run on just their fourth hit of the game. Will Myers singled with one out and Austin Nola’s two-out grounder cut the Rockies’ lead to 6-2 before pinch hitter Jake Cronenworth popped out on a foul.
Bell’s drive to third wasted Soto’s two-out double in the seventh, Myers grounded into a double play after Brandon Drury walked to start the eighth, and the Rockies got a run in the ninth on Taylor Scott’s second inning.
Austin Nola started the ninth with his third single, but the Padres managed just one more hit — Machado’s two-out single scored Nola after he advanced with a no-hitter — but Soto flied out to center to end the game.
“A lot of bloop hits,” Padres manager Bob Melvin said. “Obviously the two that McMahon hit weren’t, but I think any other one might have been a soft serve. But they got (Musgrove) to throw a lot of pitches, fouled some balls. He usually gets into the fifth inning with about 65, 70 pitches. That was not the case today. Indeed, many of their hits today were like that, but sometimes it will happen. We also hit some balls hard and had nothing to show for it.
“That’s how the game goes sometimes.”