The Diamondbacks tagged starter Sean Manaea with two home runs Thursday and they held up, as the Padres mustered only three hits in a 4-0 loss.
Both homers came in the fourth inning, off the bats of Ketel Marte – who led off the inning with his shot – and Emmanuel Rivera, whose long ball came with two out.
The Padres‘ best look at the game came in the second, when Josh Bell walked with one out and Brandon Drury followed with a single. But Ha-Seong Kim and Trent Grisham struck out to end the threat.
Otherwise, Arizona prospect Drey Jameson – owner of a 6.95 ERA in Triple-A ball – handcuffed the Padres, going seven innings and striking out five, including slugger Juan Soto. Twice.
Manaea has struggled lately, but manager Bob Melvin defended him, pointing out that his recent time off helped with the lefty’s velocity. As for the offense, Melvin said, “it didn’t even (feel) like we put up a fight. You can’t play that way, especially at this time of the year.”
With the the loss, the Padres, who have 18 games remaining, lost a half game to the idle Milwaukee Brewers, who trail the Friars by 1.5 games in the race for the final wild-card spot.
Atlanta and Philadelphia lead in the race for the first two slots.
The Padres opened up the four-game set in Arizona on a night that baseball saluted the late Hall of Famer Roberto Clemente.
The Diamondbacks may have a 68-75 record, but the team has played winning teams well in the last month. The stretch includes a sweep of the Chicago White Sox and taking three of four from the Brewers.
The series continues Friday with Blake Snell taking the mound. Joe Musgrove and Yu Darvish follow.