MIAMI -- A month ago, Chris Volstad was pointing toward a pennant race. Another dismal outing left Florida's young right-hander packing for the minors.
Will Venable hit a pair of RBI singles in San Diego's six-run second inning, Kyle Blanks added a two-run homer during that outburst and the San Diego Padres beat the sliding Marlins 9-5 Friday night, further derailing Florida's postseason hopes.David Eckstein was 3 for 6 with two runs scored and two RBIs for the Padres, who got three hits from Chase Headley -- who replaced Blanks in that second inning -- and two RBIs from Everth Cabrera."Usually when someone is hitting, everyone is hitting," Blanks said. "We've been doing that a lot lately. I think we're as good as anybody when we're hitting."Chris Coghlan was 3 for 5 and Wes Helms went 2 for 5 with two RBIs for Florida, which has dropped six of nine. NL batting leader Hanley Ramirez and Cody Ross each added two hits for the Marlins, who sent Volstad and Gaby Sanchez to Triple-A New Orleans after the game.Including Thursday's 10-3 loss to the New York Mets, Florida has allowed 19 runs and 33 hits in its last two games, needing 12 2/3 innings of bullpen work. The corresponding roster moves will be made Saturday."We'll need two pitchers," manager Fredi Gonzalez said.Blanks' two-run homer sailed over the 434-foot sign in the deepest part of center field, a costly shot for both the Padres and Marlins. Blanks aggravated a sore right foot as he rounded the bases, and neither he nor Volstad finished the inning.San Diego sent 12 batters to the plate in the second. Volstad (9-11) was charged with six runs in 1 2/3 innings, his shortest outing in 41 career starts, including a Florida-high 27 this season.Entering August, Volstad's season ERA was 4.35. In five starts since, his ERA is 9.61."That's the way it goes," Volstad said. "You've got to perform. ... Bad pitches, trying to do a little bit too much, pitch location, it's a combination of a lot of things."Kevin Correia (9-10) gave up 11 hits and four runs in 6 2/3 innings for San Diego, striking out four and walking one.Venable's first hit of the second brought home Kevin Kouzmanoff to tie the game at 1. Blanks followed with his 10th home run, and Volstad's night didn't last much longer."You don't complain when you're getting ahead and scoring runs," Correia said.Cabrera had an RBI bunt single, Eckstein drove in a run with another single and Venable capped it with a hard grounder that hopped away from first baseman Jorge Cantu and allowed Eckstein to score the sixth run.Only two batters into the game, Correia was in a 1-0 hole. Coghlan doubled to open the bottom of the first, scoring on Helms' single.From there, Correia settled down quickly, and the Padres weren't seriously threatened again until the seventh.Correia departed after Helms hit an RBI double to make it 9-4, and Adam Russell walked the only two batters he faced to load the bases with two outs. Russell gave way to left-hander Joe Thatcher, who got pinch-hitter Ronny Paulino to ground into a fielder's choice and end the inning.
Ramirez has tied Florida's record for hits in a month with 45. Coghlan has 44 so far in August. ... Cabrera has multiple hits in four of his last five games. ... The Padres will summon left-hander Wade LeBlanc from Triple-A Portland to start Saturday's game, which will be his first appearance in the majors since June 25. ... Florida 1B Nick Johnson (hamstring) worked out before batting practice and could return sometime next week. ... No relation: The Marlins had Sanchez pinch-hit for reliever Brian Sanches in the fourth inning.