Manny Machado and Juan Soto homered for the Padres Saturday, but sadly, the Phillies hit four of their own to come roaring back in Game 4 of the National League Championship Series.
With the 10-6 loss, the Padres must win Sunday if the series is to return to San Diego for Games 6 and 7. The odds are not in their favor – just 15% of teams down 3-1 in an LCS or the World Series have clawed their way back to win.
“Really the focus for us is just to win one game and get it home,” manager Bob Melvin said.
Though both skippers were poised for a Game 4 bullpen day, the relievers came on quicker than anyone expected – neither starter survived the first inning.
The Padres bounced Bailey Falter on the strength of a four-run, two-out rally started by Machado, who hit a long fly ball to left for a solo home run. The big hit? A two-run double by Brandon Drury to drive in Josh Bell and Jake Cronenworth.
Falter faced six batters, but Mike Clevinger didn’t make it that far. Each of the four Phillies who came to the plate against the right-hander reached base, with three of them coming around to score, including Rhys Hoskins, who hit a two-run homer.
Nick Martinez replaced Clevinger and retired all three batters he faced, two on strike outs, to keep the score 4-3. He continued through the third without giving up a hit or a walk.
Phillies reliever Connor Brogdon also restored order, with only Ha-Seong Kim, reaching during his 2 1/3 innings.
Sean Manaea, who had yet to pitch in the postseason, took over for Martinez in the fourth and the Phillies tied it up 4-4 on a double by Nick Castellanos and a single by Bryson Stott.
But the Padres cut a potential rally short thanks to Jurickson Profar, who threw out Stott attempting to stretch his hit into a double, and Cronenworth, who snagged a hard liner by Jean Segura to end the inning.
The fifth proved to be the difference and it started out well for the Padres. With one out, Profar walked, and Juan Soto launched a homer to right, his first of the postseason, to put the Friars ahead 6-4.
Yet Melvin stuck with Manaea in the bottom of the inning and it cost him.
Hoskins struck again with his second two-run blast of the game to tie it up, and the Phillies went ahead on a Bryce Harper double to score J.T. Realmuto, who had walked. Harper crossed the plate on a Castellanos single to complete the turnaround and hand Philadelphia an 8-6 edge.
Manaea gave up five runs on four hits in 1 1/3 innings of work. The Friars who followed him gave up a run each – Luis Garcia on a Kyle Schwarber solo homer to center in the sixth and Steven Wilson on a Realmuto solo shot to left in the seventh.
“I thought they laid off some good pitches and crushed the ones that, you know, they needed to,” Manaea said.
Meanwhile, the Padres could not find their way in the late innings against the Phillies bullpen.
Noah Syndergaard and David Robertson came on and maintained control through the eighth. Zach Eflin, however, sat them down 1-2-3 in the ninth – Trent Grisham, now 0-for-16 in the NLCS – flew out to left, Austin Nola struck out and Profar sent a harmless grounder to short.
The teams play a day game Sunday, with first pitch set for about 11:35 a.m. The starters from the series opener return for Game 5 – Yu Darvish and Zack Wheeler. The game airs on FS1.