SAN DIEGO – The San Diego Padres had only one hit – a bunt single by Everth Cabrera in the first inning – and still beat the Pittsburgh Pirates 3-2 thanks to Francisco Liriano’s wildness.
The Padres played ultimate small-ball, scoring on a sacrifice fly, an error and a bases-loaded walk to avoid a three-game sweep. Rene Rivera’s fly to Andrew McCutcheon to end the eighth was the only ball fielded by a Pirates outfielder. Carlos Quentin’s hit a sacrifice fly in the first, but it was caught in short right by second baseman Josh Harrison.
Ian Kennedy (5-6) won his third straight start, striking out seven and allowing two runs on five hits in six innings. He walked one. Huston Street pitched the ninth for his 18th save in as many chances.
Three Pirates pitchers issued nine walks, two intentional, and hit one batter. The Padres struck out 10 times. San Diego has only 12 hits in its last four games.
Liriano (1-6) walked six and struck out seven in five innings. He walked the bases loaded in the fourth inning and then walked Chris Denorfia to give the Padres a 3-1 lead.
San Diego took a 2-0 lead in the first. Denorfia drew a leadoff walk, stole second and took third when Cabrera beat out a bunt for a single. Carlos Quentin hit a sacrifice fly caught by Harrison. His throw home was well up the third-base line. After Chase Headley was hit by a pitch, Cabrera scored on Harrison’s throwing error on Tommy Medica’s grounder.
Pittsburgh pulled to 2-1 on Andrew McCutcheon’s homer to left leading off the fourth, his sixth.
The Pirates added another run in the fifth when Harrison doubled in Jordy Mercer, who was aboard on a leadoff single.
Notes: Padres RHP Andrew Cashner threw a bullpen session and could start Saturday night against Washington if he doesn’t have a setback. He’s been on the disabled list with soreness in his right elbow since May 15. … The Padres recalled INF Jace Peterson from Triple-A El Paso and optioned RHP Jesse Hahn to Double-A San Antonio. Peterson, in his second stint with the Padres, started at second base in place of Jedd Gyorko, who’s hitting only .162. .… Peterson hit .174 in 10 games, including seven starts, in his first stint with the Padres. … Hahn lasted 2 2-3 innings in his major league debut in a 4-1 loss to Pittsburgh Tuesday night. … San Diego is off today and will open a three-game series against Washington on Friday, when the scheduled starters are Tanner Roark (3-4, 3.25) for the Nationals and Tyson Ross (6-4, 2.85) for the Padres. … Pittsburgh also is off today and returns home to open a series against Milwaukee Friday, when the scheduled starters are Kyle Lohse (7-1, 2.60) for the Brewers and Brandon Cumpton (0-2, 6.85) for the Pirates.