Bats put on show as Peavy wins ninth
Padres offense raps 15 hits to back ace's six-inning outing
SAN DIEGO -- "If we want to be the team we want to be, we have to take advantage of a team that's playing like it's playing right now."
The Padres certainly heeded the words of Jake Peavy, and behind their ace they handed the Orioles their ninth straight loss, 12-6, in an old fashioned "American League" game Tuesday night at PETCO Park.
Peavy (9-1), who tied the Dodgers' Brad Penny for most wins in the National League, allowed three earned runs -- all in the sixth inning -- as he saw his ERA rise to 1.98. He struck out seven, including Paul Bako with the bases loaded, and walked two.
The Padres had plenty of offense as they strafed starting pitcher Steve Trachsel (5-5) and four relievers for 15 hits and a season-high 12 runs in Dave Trembley's first game as interim manager after the O's let go Sam Perlozzo on Monday.
Khalil Greene matched a career high with four hits, including his ninth home run, and drove in three runs. Mike Cameron went 3-for-5 with a triple and two RBIs and Marcus Giles hit a three-run home run that got Peavy and the Padres off and winging in the bottom of the second.
"That at-bat [vs. Bako] was the critical one for Jake," said manager Bud Black. "His stuff was still good. And I thought even though he wasn't totally executing, I saw enough good signs that I felt I was going to go with him until we were tied or he gave up the lead. Jake has proven to me all season that at crunch time he's made the pitches."
Fortunately, Peavy stopped the damage with his second strikeout of Bako after pitching around Jay Gibbons, whom he walked to load the bases.
"I felt comfortable with the matchup with Bako," said Peavy. "I had some history against him. I didn't know Gibbons at all, never faced him. So before I was going to let him beat me, I liked to go to Bako. It was a time you wanted to go to where you're familiar with."
The strikeout of Bako came on Peavy's 100th pitch. And whether it was a signal or not, the Padres responded with six runs in the bottom of the sixth, highlighted by Greene's two-out, two-run single.
In that inning rookie Chase Headley made two outs, but in the process, got his first Major League extra-base hit when he doubled, but was thrown out trying for a triple.
In all, the Padres scored 10 of their 12 runs after two were out.
"We swung the bats from early on in the game," said Black.
Even in the first inning after the Padres loaded the bases with no one out and came up empty, Black was still optimistic.
"I think if we got there once, we're going to get there again," said Black, "that's how I feel. Even though we didn't score we felt we could load them up again."
Sure enough, while they didn't load them up, they got two men on in the second and Giles delivered a 329-foot home run into the short porch in right.
"I'm glad they made that short part in PETCO for me, that was nice," said Giles. "Other than that, it's an out, but it was just nice to give us the lead. If the walls not there, he catches it.
"When you got Peavy on the hill and you throw a three spot up there, you feel pretty good about it. It's just nice to get some runs out there for Peavy."
The same Peavy that sits atop of the NL in wins, ERA and strikeouts.
"It's been a good first couple of months and I guess I'm halfway through my season," said Peavy. "It's been a good 14-15 starts. I've felt blessed. I felt like the second half of last year built towards this, not numbers-wise, but with some of the things I worked on and got better at. This year, I've been healthy and I feel strong. And on your not-so-good night, you'll take 'em."
And so will the Padres.
Sandy Burgin is a contributor to MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.