After the offense fails to come through in clutch spots, Brewers lose in walk-off fashion to Padres

·4 min read
Padres centerfielder Jose Azocar (center) is congratulated by teammates after hitting a walk-off single in the 10th inning against the Brewers on Monday night.
Padres centerfielder Jose Azocar (center) is congratulated by teammates after hitting a walk-off single in the 10th inning against the Brewers on Monday night.

SAN DIEGO – Golden opportunities aplenty went by the wayside as the Milwaukee Brewers lost via a walk-off for the first time this season.

Moments after the Brewers failed to scratch across a run, Jose Azocar came through in an identical situation with a walk-off single in the 10th inning to lift the San Diego Padres to a 3-2 win Monday night at Petco Park.

Milwaukee loaded the bases with nobody out in the fourth and 10th innings and each time came away without scoring.

Both proved equally costly, but the goose egg in the 10th was undoubtedly more painful. After Luis Urias led off with a single that moved Kolten Wong to third, Christian Yelich walked to bring up Andrew McCutchen, who hit into a 1-2-3 double play. Rowdy Tellez’s grounder to first ended the inning and put the Brewers behind the 8-ball.

BOX SCORE: Padres 3, Brewers 2 (10 innings)

“Every moment matters,” Brewers manager Craig Counsell said. “I think every moment has an impact on the game. We loaded the bases twice with nobody out and didn't score. Those are runs we didn't capitalize on after really good scoring opportunities. That's our chance to score more.”

The Brewers went just 2 for 13 with runners in scoring position, with only one of those hits producing a run.

“It just seemed they had the horseshoe hanging out of their gloves,” McCutchen said. “We just were unable to make any type of hard contact when we needed it or having a ball just find the hole or something like that.”

Miguel Sánchez, called up from the minors just hours prior, got a groundout to begin the bottom of the 10th, and the Brewers then opted to walk Eric Hosmer and Wil Myers intentionally to load the bases. Ha-Seong Kim lined out but Azocar lofted a single into center to score Manny Machado from second.

Brewers starting pitcher Adrian Houser went six strong innings, but the bullpen surrendered a pair of runs over 3⅔ innings. Devin Williams pitched in the ninth inning in the role usually reserved for Josh Hader, who is not with the team for this series while attending to a family medical emergency.

Houser mixed his offerings, varying speeds to keep San Diego from locking into one pitch. San Diego averaged an exit velocity of just 85.6 mph while also striking out four times against the right-hander.

It helped that Houser’s four-seam was humming early on, consistently between 95 and 96 mph. He used it to procure two strikeouts in the first as he worked around two base runners in a 32-pitch inning.

The 29 four-seamers thrown were the most in a game for Houser since Sept. 13, 2020. Opponents entered the day batting just .183 with a .222 slugging percentage against the pitch. That slugging number is by far the best among Houser’s five different offerings.

“I’d have to say that the four-seam was probably my best pitch tonight,” Houser said. “It was really the only one I felt like I had working. I was able to get to the top of the zone and get in on some lefties hands.”

Houser settled in after the first as he started to gain feel for his sinker and managed to throw just 67 pitches over his final five innings.

The Brewers opened the scoring in the second on a two-run, two-out, two-strike double by Tyrone Taylor, but Hunter Renfroe injured his right hamstring on the play and left the game not long after. He was scheduled to get an MRI on Tuesday.

“We don’t really know what it’s gonna be as far as a timetable,” Renfroe said after the game. “I may be back in three days, I may be back in four weeks. We don’t know.”

Trent Grisham has had a forgettable start to the season but made sure to burn his former team when presented with the chance.

His double in the fifth moved Luke Voit to third base, a critical play considering Voit scored on an infield tapper by Jorge Alfaro one batter later.

Grisham tied the game with a skillfully-located squeeze bunt off Brad Boxberger in the seventh, bringing in Wil Myers from third after he led off the frame with a booming double.

More: Brewers homestand recap: A poor showing and then an injury to Freddy Peralta on Sunday put damper on 4-2 stretch

More: Luis Urías' all-around game in Brewers 5-1 win over Nationals is a reminder of just how far he's come in one year

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This article originally appeared on Milwaukee Journal Sentinel: Brewers vs. Padres at Petco Park: lineup, score, updates