Manny Machado ignited the sellout crowd at Petco Park with a mammoth home run but it was the Los Angeles Dodgers who got the last laugh in a 4-3 comeback win over the San Diego Padres. It marked the Dodgers’ 15th consecutive win against the Padres in a Kershaw start, and they remained undefeated in his four outings this season.
Just as Yasiel Puig did last month, Machado’s first at-bat against the Dodgers resulted in a two-run home run off Kershaw. Ever the showman, Machdo admired his 437-foot blast to the second deck in left field before breaking out into a light jog around the bases.
In similar fashion to his outing against the Cincinnati Reds, Kershaw managed to settle in after the early home run. Though, his string of consecutive batters retired was snapped at six when Ian Kinsler ambushed a first-pitch fastball for a one-out solo home run in the third inning that put the Dodgers in a 3-0 hole.
The outing was atypical for Kershaw, as he entered the series opener a lifetime 18-6 with a 1.90 ERA against the Padres, including an 8-2 record and 1.61 ERA in 14 career starts at Petco Park.
If there was an overarching positive takeaway from the night, Kershaw avoided injury and didn’t appear affected after taking a line drive off his throwing shoulder in the third inning. He got through six innings and recorded strikeouts for five of his final six outs.
Meanwhile, Eric Lauer matched his career dominance against the Dodgers. He got through four no-hit innings, with the only baserunner allowed during that stretch an Austin Barnes walk. Lauer was aided by Hunter Renfroe making a pair of difficult plays and Wil Myers inexplicably leaping in front of Franmil Reyes for a catch in the right-center field gap.
While Renfroe and Myers assisted Lauer’s effort, his bid for history was lost on Chris Taylor’s leadoff home run in the fifth inning. Lauer’s outing came to an abrupt halt when Kiké Hernandez singled, Cody Bellinger doubled and Justin Turner walked to load the bases with nobody out in the sixth inning.
It was a particularly encouraging sign for Bellinger, considering he was in pain and checked on by a trainer after appearing to jam his right shoulder on a diving attempt at a groundball. But for the Dodgers, the golden opportunity produced just one run on Corey Seager’s sacrifice fly.
They then pulled even in the seventh inning on Austin Barnes’ solo home run that just had enough to clear Myers’ leaping attempt at the wall in left-center field. The homer was Barnes’ fourth, which matched last year’s output.
Barnes then helped the Dodgers complete their comeback by leading off the ninth with a double and coming home to score on Max Muncy’s RBI single that went off Eric Hosmer’s glove and rolled into foul territory.