Suppan solid but Hamels better as Phils top Padres
PHILADELPHIA (AP) For the second day in a row a Padres starter was able to keep pace with a Phillies ace. In the end, it wasn't enough.
Making just his third start of the season, Suppan held Philadelphia to three runs - two earned - in six innings of work. Suppan gave up six hits and threw just 78 pitches - one which he would like to get back at hitter-friendly Citizen Bank Park.
"It's one of those things. When a ball goes over the fence it's a home run and you can't do anything about it," Suppan said of Jimmy Rollins' homer to open the game.
Suppan (2-1) was recalled from Triple-A Tucson on May 2. The 37-year-old was signed to a minor league deal during the offseason after spending last season with Kansas City's Triple-A affiliate in Omaha.
Suppan has lost each of his last seven decisions against the Phillies dating to April 9, 2005. He is 0-7 in his last nine starts with his teams losing all nine. The last time he beat the Phillies was May 6, 2004 with St. Louis.
"I tried to keep the ball down, changed speeds and keep it close," Suppan said.
His six innings marked his longest outing since October 3, 2010, against Colorado while pitching for the Cardinals.
It was the sixth lost in 10 games overall for the Padres.
San Diego manager Bud Black liked what he saw from Suppan and his team, although they lost the three-game set to the Phillies and the season series as well, four games to three.
"Our guy kept us in the game, we just couldn't get anything going and (Jonathan) Papelbon held us down in the ninth. It was a good series, all tight games, it seemed like every pitch was important," Black said.
San Diego left for Washington after the game to play a brief two-game set before returning home to face the Los Angeles Dodgers for two games and then host the Angels for three games next weekend.
The Padres didn't fare too well against Hamels, who was suspended by major league baseball after the Phillies left-hander intentionally threw a pitch that hit Washington rookie Bryce Harper a week ago.
It was Hamel's fifth victory in his last six starts. The San Diego native allowed five hits while striking out five.
"It's nice to get some runs. Obviously when you get runs you can win," said Hamels. "I know if I just go out there and I battle and try to pitch deep into the ball game and we put up some runs, then I can get wins."
The Phillies have won Hamels' last six starts, about the only consistency they've shown this season.
"He pitched well. He's having a fine year, no doubt," Black said of Hamels. "Early in the game his change wasn't quite where he wanted it, but from the fourth on he had it working."
The Padres made Hamels work as he threw 108 pitches and was over 90 by the fifth inning.
Their lone run against Hamels came in the third. Chris Denorfia hit a one-out double and Yonder Alonso walked. With Jesus Guzman batting, both runners caught Hamels unaware and pulled off a double steal. Guzman's slow grounder to third plated Denorfia to make it 2-1. Hamels then got Nick Hundley to ground out to short.
"That's what we have to do, push the game a little bit. That's the way we play," said Black of the double steal.
San Diego threatened in the eighth but managed to score only one run. Jose Contreras relieved Hamels and struck out Alonso but gave up a double to Guzman, who then stole third. Contreras got Hundley to ground out to short but quickly gave up a run-scoring single to James Darnell that pulled the Padres to 3-2.
Jonathan Papelbon worked a perfect ninth - striking out two of the three batters he faced- for his 10th save.
Suppan gave up three runs - two earned - on six hits over six innings.
Rollins' homer was the 38th leadoff shot in his career.
"It was nice to hit a line drive," Rollins said.
It was just the fifth series win of the year for Philadelphia, which had won four of its last 10 games.
The Phillies were able to get some hits with runners in scoring position after going 1 for 10 in Saturday night's 2-1 loss.
Ty Wigginton hit a hard grounder to third but Darnell's throw sailed over the head of Alonso at first, allowing Wigginton to take second. With two outs, Brian Schneider, who came in 9 for 18 lifetime against Suppan, singled to center to drive in Wigginton and make it 2-0.
Juan Pierre's two-out double in the bottom of the fifth scored Schneider for a 3-1 lead.
Notes: Suppan made his 415th career start and ranks fourth among active pitchers. Jamie Moyer leads with 635. Livan Hernandez (474) and former Phillies pitcher Kevin Millwood (421) follow. ... Rollins came in just 9 for 27 with two home runs in his career against Suppan. ... Announced attendance was 45,442 for the Phillies' 220th consecutive regular season sellout. ... Hunter Pence went 0 for 4 and is now mire in a 2-for-23 slump. ... Pierre went 2 for 4 and has seven hits in his last 16 at-bats.
Updated May 13, 2012