SAN DIEGO (AP) It was no surprise to see San Diego Padres All-Star Tyson Ross shut down the New York Mets. The run support he received from his teammates was quite out of character.
Ross threw seven shutout innings Saturday night, and the light-hitting Padres hit three homers in a 6-0 victory that snapped New York’s four-game winning streak.
”We’ve talked about the maturity, the development of Tyson the last month or so,” Padres manager Bud Black said. ”About what it means to be one of those guys at the front end of the rotation, to stop losing streaks and put zeroes on the board, to really throw great games, to really shut down opponents.
”He is starting to do that.”
Ross (8-10) allowed only four hits in his first start following his first All-Star appearance. He struck out six and issued three walks. Three relievers pitched the final two innings to seal the Padres’ seventh shutout.
Yasmani Grandal, Will Venable and Seth Smith homered as San Diego won for the third time in 11 games. The Mets had won nine of 11.
That the Padres became offensive when Ross was pitching was the news. In his previous eight starts, the Padres scored more than one run only once, in a 3-0 win on July 2 against the Reds. Overall, they had scored only five runs in that span.
”It’s always a little bit easier pitching with a lead,” Ross said. ”It’s more comfortable and you don’t have to worry about making mistakes and being down.
”Yasmani came up with a big homer early, and the guys followed through from there. It was a good team win.”
New York’s Dillon Gee (4-2) worked five innings, allowing four runs and five hits in his second start since missing two months with a strained right lat. Gee struck out eight with no walks.
Ross didn’t surrender a hit in the first four innings. His bid to throw the first no-hitter in Padres history was derailed by Travis d’Arnaud’s four-hopper that ricocheted off third base for an infield single.
The Mets were stymied by Ross’ mid-90s fastball, tight sinker and a biting slider.
”He had great stuff,” New York manager Terry Collins said. ”That is why he is on the All-Star team.”
The Mets didn’t have a runner reach scoring position until the seventh when Lucas Duda singled, Kirk Nieuwenhuis walked and Juan Lagares singled to load the bases. But Ruben Tejada struck out to end the threat.
Gee was stranded on first after a two-out walk in the second inning, and d’Arnaud was erased at second on a double play after his single in the fifth.
Pinch-hitter Eric Young Jr. walked with one out in the sixth inning, but was thrown out by Grandal when he tried to steal second. Curtis Granderson followed with the Mets’ second hit, but Daniel Murphy grounded out to Ross.
Smith’s homer in the sixth pushed the Padres ahead 5-0.
Venable hit his first home run since June 10 in the fourth inning, extending the Padres’ lead to 4-0.
”It was a little weird. Just a bad night,” Gee said.
San Diego took a 3-0 lead in the third inning, thanks to a big hit by Headley and a bad throw by Nieuwenhuis.
Headley’s one-out single scored Ross, and when Nieuwenhuis’ relay to third base landed in the Mets’ dugout, Alexi Amarista, who had singled, scored, as well.
Grandal staked Ross to a 1-0 edge in the second inning with his eighth homer, a 440-foot blast to right-center.
”I didn’t see the swing but I heard it,” Ross said. ”It was loud.”
NOTES: After Friday’s trade of RHP Huston Street to the Angels, RHP Joaquin Benoit will become the Padres’ closer. RHP Kevin Quackenbush is the top candidate to work the eighth inning. … RHP Andrew Cashner, who is on the DL, threw on Saturday as he tested his sore right shoulder and neck. … SS Everth Cabrera (strained left hamstring) has resumed running and could play in a minor league game next week. … Mets RHP Jon Niese (left shoulder strain) is expected to start on Monday at Seattle. RHP Daisuke Matsuzaka is working out of the bullpen with the expectation that Niese will rejoin the rotation. … Mets RHP Zack Wheeler (5-8, 3.90) faces Padres RHP Odrisamer Despaigne (2-1, 1.35) in Sunday’s series finale.