SAN DIEGO (The Sports Xchange) – Veteran catcher Ryan Hanigan wasted little time in making his presence felt with the Colorado Rockies.
Two games after being promoted from Triple-A Albuquerque as an emergency addition, Hanigan Thursday afternoon homered then drove home Ian Desmond with a bases-loaded, infield single in the 11th inning to give the Rockies a 3-2 victory over the Padres in the rubber-match of a three-game series at Petco Park.
The game was delayed for 13 minutes in the bottom of the ninth when the bat of Padre Hector Sanchez flew out of his hands on the follow through of a swing and hit a woman fan behind the third-base dugout.
The unidentified fan walked up the aisle after being attended to by medical personnel and was waving to the crowd as she departed Petco Park via a wheelchair. She was transported to a local hospital for observation.
“The injuries do not appear to be serious,” the Padres said in a statement.
“I feel bad about it,” said Sanchez. “I was totally relieved when she walked out.”
Hanigan, a 10-year major league veteran who was very briefly with the Padres on Dec. 19, 2014, was promoted after Rockies catcher Troy Wolters suffered a concussion when struck by Sanchez’s backswing.
Hanigan had three hits in his first start for the Rockies, including a homer off Padres reliever Ryan Buchter in the top of the seventh that gave Colorado a 2-0 lead.
Desmond had reached first on a force out — barely beating the relay on a potential, inning-ending double play grounder. He advanced to second on Mark Reynolds single and to third when former Padre Alexi Amarista took two near third strikes to draw a walk to load the bases.
Hanigan then hit a bases-loaded grounder to the left of shortstop Erick Aybar, who fielded the ball but was wide on his back-handed flip in an attempt to get the inning-ending out at second on a force play.
“I had fun today,” said Hanigan. “The coaching staff have given me the information I need quickly and simply. We got the win, that’s all that matters. The home run, the ball got up in the air and I thought it had a chance although this is a pretty big yard. This was a good start for me.”
“What a game Hanigan had coming up from our Triple-A team and contributing with a veteran game behind the plate with a rookie starting pitcher and multiple relief pitchers that he hasn’t caught,” said Rockies manager Bud Black.
“That is not easy. The home run was a bonus.”
Chad Qualls (1-0) was credited with the win for and Greg Holland recorded his 12th save of the young season. Padres left-handed reliever Brad Hand (0-1) suffered the loss as he gave up just his second run of the season.
After coming from behind to tie the game at 2-2 in the bottom of the eighth, the Padres left the winning run in scoring position in the eighth, ninth and 10th innings.
“We had plenty of opportunities to score and we couldn’t capitalize,” said Padres manager Andy Green. “We didn’t get the big hit.”
The Padres tied the game when Luis Sardinas scored as Yangervis Solarte beat out a relay throw to prevent an inning-ending double-play in the bottom of the eighth.
Rockies reliever Adam Ottavino started the Padres game-tying rally by walking the bases loaded with one out before being replaced by left-handed Jake McGee, who got Solarte to loop a broken-bat, one-hopper toward Amarista at shortstop. But Solarte beat the relay by second baseman DJ LeMahieu to allow Sardinas to score.
In the bottom of the ninth, McGee worked out of a bases-loaded, two-out jam by retiring Aybar on a pop fly to short right.
The Padres trailed 2-0 going into the bottom of the seventh against Rockies rookie left-hander Kyle Freeland.
Colorado Rockies scored their first run in the second on three straight singles to open the inning. Desmond reached on a roller past the mound that charging Padres third baseman Ryan Schimpf couldn’t make a play on. Desmond moved to second on Reynolds sharp single to the left side of second and scored on a sharp single to the right side of second by Amarista, who made his second straight start at short.
The Rockies’ second run came on Hanigan’s seventh-inning homer off Padres Buchter. Hanigan’s 364-foot drive to left barely cleared the glove of Padres left fielder Jabari Blash. “For a moment there, I thought Blash was going to catch it,” said Black.
Freeland retired the first seven Padres he faced before Blash reached on an infield hit that a diving stop by Arenado prevented from rolling into the left field corner for a double. Freeland then retired 13 of the next 14 Padres he faced.
But Solarte’s one-out walk in the bottom of the seventh was followed by an RBI double by Hunter Renfroe.
Freeland allowed one run on three hits and two walks with four strikeouts over 6 1/3 innings.
Padres starter Luis Perdomo allowed one run on five hits and two walks with five strikeouts over six innings. After giving up the run in the second and getting a double-play grounder to work out of a bases-loaded, one-out jam in the third, Perdomo retired eight of the last nine Rockies he faced.
NOTES: Rockies manager Bud Black gave SS Trevor Story a second straight start off Thursday and said RF Carlos Gonzalez might be getting a break over the weekend. “I want Trevor to exhale a bit,” Black said of Story, who is down to .170 after runs of 0-for-9 and 2-for-14. Story did enter the game in the ninth. … Gonzalez, who departed the game in the ninth with a calf cramp, is down to .200 after a 4-for-24 road trip. … Rockies LHP Tyler Anderson will have his next start pushed back a couple of days to work on his stride and arm angle. … The infield single by Padres’ LF Jabari Blash in the third snapped skids of 0-for-9 and 1-for-23.