Robert Brender, @robertbrender on TwitterLas Vegas 51s 2, @ Tucson Padres (SD) 3
Vegas right-hander Matt Fox tossed six shutout innings for the second consecutive start, only to watch the bullpen implode in a 3-2 loss to the Tucson Padres Friday night in Arizona. The no-decision kept Fox’ record 3-2, while his era went down to 4.18 in 10 AAA starts since signing as a Minor League free agent in mid-May. In his last two starts, Fox has thrown 12 innings, allowing no runs on eight hits, with nine strikeouts and two walks. It’s a nice stretch for the 30-year-old, who’s flown under the radar at the back of the Vegas rotation for the last two months.
The first Padres run was surrendered by Jack Leathersich, who gave up a homerun to the first batter he faced after replacing Fox in the 7th inning. He’s allowed six earned runs in 10.2 innings since being called up to AAA. After Robert Carson completed 1.1 scoreless innings, Wally Backman turned to Justin Hampson, who was looking for his second save in as many days. Unfortunately, things didn’t go smoothly for the temporary Vegas closer. With two on and two out in the 9th Hampson gave up a two-run single to Mike Wilson, giving the Padres a walkoff win.
The 51s got the scoring started in the first inning. Ruben Tejada singled to leadoff the game for his only hit in three at-bats. He’s now 2 for 13 on the rehab assignment in Vegas. Wilmer Flores followed with his PCL-leading 29th double of the season (his only hit in the game) putting runners on second and third. After a Zach Lutz walk, Tejada would cross the plate on a wild pitch from Tucson starter Ryan Kelly.
Lutz drove in the second Vegas run on a single in the 3rd inning, his second rbi in as many days and 39th of the season.