SAN DIEGO — The Marlins arrived in San Diego fresh off their best nine-game home stand in franchise history. Four days later, they wonder what happened.
Miami’s road woes continued Sunday as it lost to the Padres, 5-4. It was the Marlins’ third straight defeat as their record away from home sunk to 3-13, worst in the majors.
Miami fell behind 5-0, starter Henderson Alvarez couldn’t get past the fourth inning and suddenly a team that had recently created a buzz is flat heading to Los Angeles.
"We’re coming off a monster home stand where everybody pitched well and everything was going great," Miami manager Mike Redmond said. "Now we’re being tested on the road and we’ll find out what we’re made of."
The Marlins made a decent rally on Sunday, scoring four times in the eighth and loading the bases in the ninth.
"I felt like we are going to get that big hit and walk away from here with another win," said Redmond, whose team is 17-5 at home, best in the majors. "It didn’t happen, but I’m glad we showed some life at the end of the game."
But it’s the early innings which have slugger Giancarlo Stanton concerned.
"So we came back," said Stanton, who had two hits and extended his hitting streak to a career-high 13 games. "But we were lackadaisical the first half of the game.
"We know we can come back late, it’s nothing to take out of that to prove, we know that. It’s more playing a full nine innings on the road."
Instead the Marlins had trouble with Robbie Erlin (2-4) over 6 1-3 innings and didn’t have quite enough against three Padres relievers. Huston Street did a tight wire act in the ninth in getting Jeff Baker to groundout with the bases loaded for his 11th save.
The Marlins had a hand in a record, but for the wrong reasons.
Padres pitchers struck out 48 over the four-game series to set a franchise mark. They broke their standard of 44 set in 1998 against Montreal.
Alvarez (2-3), who was coming off his second shutout of the season and third in his last eight starts, wasn’t sharp. He lasted four innings, allowing five runs on seven hits with three walks and two strikeouts.
"I think the main thing today was he didn’t have a feel for his sinker," catcher Jeff Mathis said.
But Mathis also felt the Marlins didn’t match the Padres’ intensity.
"Those guys came out ready to play ball, tip your hat to them," he said. "They put it to us the last few days."
In the fourth inning the Padres extended their lead to 5-0, which was too much ground for the Marlins to make up.
"It turned out we needed them all," Padres manager Bud Black said.
The Marlins rallied in the eighth when Christian Yelich homered, his third of the year. Reed Johnson followed with a single which chased Dale Thayer. Stanton singled off Joaquin Benoit.
Baker’s two-run triple to right pulled the Marlins to within 5-3 and when Garrett Jones walked and took second on a wild pitch, the tying run was in scoring position. Baker scored on Adeiny Hechavarria’s groundout to second but pinch-hitter Jarrod Saltalamacchia struck out to end the threat.
The Padres scored early when Will Venable hit his franchise-best 10th career leadoff homer. His 400-foot blast off a 1-0 fastball over the right-field wall was his first home run of the year.
NOTES: Padres SS Everth Cabrera was out of the starting lineup after his wife, Connie, gave birth to their daughter late Saturday night. … OF Carlos Quentin was to play with Single-A Lake Elsinore on Sunday as he continues his rehabilitation from bruised left knee. Quentin could join the club on its upcoming road trip. … LHP Casey Kelly threw a bullpen session and will pitch at Double-A San Antonio on Wednesday; he’s rebounding from Tommy John surgery. … Redmond said he’s not sure where RHP Henry Rodriguez fits into the team’s bullpen. Rodriguez, who worked the seventh inning, was summoned from Triple-A New Orleans. … Marlins RHP Tom Koehler (3-2, 1.99) faces Dodgers RHP Dan Haren (4-1, 2.68) on Monday in Los Angeles. … Padres RHP Andrew Cashner (2-5, 2.86) goes against Reds RHP Mike Leake (2-3, 3.40) in Tuesday’s series opener in Cincinnati.