Padre bullpen collapses in 6-1 loss to Mariners

Stephen Brashear-USA TODAY Sports
The Padres and Mariners took a tie game into the 8th inning before the Mariners scored 5 runs and ran away with a 6-1 victory.

In a series between two teams who are pushing for playoff spots, the Mariners came up with some late offense to lift them over the top. Yu Darvish and Emerson Hancock both pitched impressively to start the contest as both offenses remained quiet for the majority of the game. However, the Mariners were able to pull away for good in the bottom of the 8th with a 5-spot off of the San Diego bullpen. The Padres are now 55-60 and face more and more pressure each day to turn the ship around before it’s too late.

Here are three takeaways from the loss:

Mariners silence the Padre lineup

A big correlation that seems to be present within Padre losses is the lack of production from their “big-money” players that comes along with them. Once again on Wednesday night, the offense was unable to do much of anything. An RBI groundout from Juan Soto in the first inning would be the only run scored all night for the Padres as the Mariner pitching staff would have them looking confused for the next 8 innings. Fernando Tatis Jr., Juan Soto, Manny Machado, and Xander Bogaerts went a combined 1-14 from the plate as San Diego was only able to come up with 4 hits in the game. The lack of offensive production makes winning games nearly impossible and puts an immense amount of pressure onto a pitching staff that already has enough work cut out for them. San Diego only managed to score 1 run in their 2-game series against the Mariners, a heavily disappointing mark. Things will need to be much different going forward if the Padres want to show their resilience and willingness to win when it matters.

Bullpen falls apart late

Starting pitching was not the main issue for the Padres in their series against the Mariners. Yesterday, it was Nick Martinez who started things off for the Padres by pitching 3 scoreless innings. Today, it was ace Yu Darvish who stepped up and delivered a quality start with 6 innings of shutout baseball (1 unearned run). However, it was Steven Wilson and Tim Cosgrove who allowed the damage for the Padres in the 8th inning. Cal Raleigh blasted a 2-run homer to break the tie and gave the Mariners a 3-1 lead before hits from Ty France, Cade Marlowe, and Dylan Moore would give Seattle some more padding with a 6-1 lead. These types of losses are simply gutting for a team that desperately needs to gather wins in hopes of making a playoff push. While the pitching staff can’t be expected to be perfect all the time and the Padre lineup will need to be more productive on offense, it still stings to throw away games in crunch time and plummet further down in the Wild Card race.

Hancock is solid in big league debut

Emerson Hancock, a first-round pick for the Mariners back in 2020, made his MLB debut for the club on Wednesday evening after being selected from Double-A Arkansas. He was able to display his level of talent and potential as he worked through 5 innings and allowed only 1 run. Hancock struck out 3 batters and allowed only 2 hits during his time in the game. While he was unable to receive credit for his first big-league win, he certainly made his case as to why he deserves to pitch on the big stage. Many fans who watched on raved about his two-seam fastball and defensive ability from the mound. Unfortunately for the Padres, they were on the wrong end of his impressive debut and suffered their second consecutive series loss.

The Padres will have the day off on Thursday before returning to action against the Arizona Diamondbacks on Friday. Arizona, who has gone 0-7 since the trade deadline, provides San Diego with a perfect opportunity to get back on track and gather some momentum towards the rest of the season.

First pitch on Friday is scheduled for 6:40 PST.