SAN DIEGO (AP) -- The San Diego Padres gained a victory, but at a
potentially large cost.
On a night when Phil Nevin and Brian Tollberg were lost to
injuries, rookie reliever Jason Middlebrook provided a huge lift
with seven shutout innings, leading the Padres to an 11/3 win over
the Colorado Rockies on Wednesday night.
But Middlebrook's sparkling outing and a beefed-up offense were
lost in the wake of the injuries.
"For getting a win, that's a rough way to go,'' Padres manager
Bruce Bochy said.
Nevin left the game in the seventh inning with a left rotator
cuff contusion after making a diving stop on Todd Zeile's one-hop
grounder. Nevin is scheduled to have an MRI test on Thursday.
Tollberg, who left the game with a sprained right elbow, will be
placed on the 15-day disabled list, according to general manager
Kevin Towers. Tollberg was removed in the third inning after
throwing a curveball to Zeile.
Tollberg said he "felt a twinge'' in his elbow on a pitch to
Juan Uribe, three batters before Zeile.
Towers also announced after the game that rookie third baseman
Sean Burroughs (right shoulder) will also be placed on the 15-day
Nevin was just activated off the disabled list Monday after
missing 14 games with a strained left elbow. Nevin moved back to
his former position at third base, replacing Burroughs, after
beginning the season at first base.
"When it rains, it pours,'' said Padres' Mark Kotsay. "But all
you can do is show up tomorrow and get after it. Teams are not
going to feel sorry for us.''
Middlebrook (1-1) relieved Tollberg with the bases loaded and no
outs. He allowed Zeile's sacrifice fly and an RBI single to Todd
Hollandsworth before getting out of the inning.
Middlebrook, who appeared in four games -- including three starts
-- last season for San Diego, allowed four hits with five strikeouts
and two walks. Middlebrook also went 2-for-2 and scored a run.
"It was important that I come in and pick the bullpen up,''
Middlebrook said. "We had some guys that needed the rest, so I was
just glad to be able to contribute.''
Middlebrook "gave them a big shot in the arm,'' said Colorado
manager Clint Hurdle.
Dennis Stark (3-1) allowed eight runs -- six earned -- on five
hits. The right-hander also gave up seven walks, walking four of
the first five batters he faced, including Ray Lankford with the
bases loaded to give San Diego a 1-0 lead in the first inning.
"I would have great movement on a pitch and it would almost
move too much,'' Stark said.
Kotsay hit a three-run homer in the Padres' second. His
second-deck homer was the 35th in Qualcomm Stadium's 34-year
Nevin drove in two runs off Brian Fuentes with a sixth-inning
single for an 8-3 lead. The Padres loaded the bases against Stark
on Middlebrook's one-out single and consecutive walks to Kotsay and
Middlebrook's previous longest appearances came in a pair
of six-inning starts last season against Los Angeles, accounting
for his previous two major league wins. ... ... Stark was
attempting to become just the third Rockies pitcher to win his
first four starts. ... Padres SS Deivi Cruz extended his hitting
streak to a career-high 11 games.