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May 4—When Tyler Anderson reached the seventh inning, the Pittsburgh Pirates left-hander was aware that he hadn't allowed a hit against the San Diego Padres — and also that the game was still a scoreless tie.
Anderson wasn't about to put pressure on himself to throw a no-hitter, let alone worry about preventing any runs. That's the mentality that he brings to the mound, to pitch the same whether leading or trailing.
"When you try to put up zeroes all the time, when you feel like you have to put up zeroes," Anderson said, "it can be dicey out there."
The Padres provided the pressure, first spoiling Anderson's no-hit bid and then his shutout on their way to a 2-0 victory Monday night at Petco Park.
Wil Myers got the first hit off Anderson, Tommy Pham's sacrifice fly ended the shutout, and Austin Nola added an RBI double to lift the Padres (17-13). It was the fifth consecutive loss for the Pirates (12-16), as well as their second consecutive shutout after a 3-0 loss to the St. Louis Cardinals on Sunday to complete a three-game series sweep.
Anderson (2-3) allowed two hits and three walks with five strikeouts on 91 pitches in 6 1/3 innings. After giving up 10 hits in a loss at the Chicago Cubs on April 8, Anderson had allowed only four runs on 10 hits over his next three starts, striking out 14 while walking six.
"Obviously, that's a playoff-caliber lineup and probably about as good of a lineup as we're going to face, especially for him with all the right-handers in there," Pirates manager Derek Shelton said of Anderson. "Six no-hit, then he gave up the one ball off the end of the bat and, yeah, he was outstanding. Executed pitches all night long. He did an unbelievable job."
Not since Kip Wells threw 7 1/3 no-hit innings in a 2-0 loss to the Milwaukee Brewers on July 1, 2002 had a Pirates pitcher gone six innings without allowing a hit and ended up losing. Like Anderson, Wells allowed two hits and three walks with five strikeouts.
The Padres started slow, despite starter Miguel Diaz not giving up a run through the first three innings. Gregory Polanco and Kevin Newman drew back-to-back walks with two outs in the second to give the Pirates runners on first and third when Michael Perez smacked a grounder, but Padres second baseman Ha-Seong Kim made a spectacular diving stop to his left to save a run.
"The game changes if Kim doesn't make a really good play there in the second inning and we have a 1-0 lead," Shelton said. "Then, unfortunately, the balls we did square up we hit right at people. Sometimes, that's just the way it goes."
Bryan Reynolds hit a two-out double off the right-field fence in the third, only to be stranded when Diaz struck out Colin Moran. And, in the fifth, Anderson and Adam Frazier hit successive two-out singles, but Reynolds grounded out to short.
Anderson faced the minimum batters through the first four innings. He walked Padres leadoff hitter Trent Grisham, but got a 6-4-3 double play in the first. He retired the next 12 batters, finishing the fourth inning on seven pitches.
It wasn't until the fifth that the Padres mounted an offensive threat. Grisham hit a hot grounder down the third-base line but Erik Gonzalez made a backhand stop and threw him out on a two-hopper to first. Jake Cronenworth hit a two-out comebacker to Anderson's right that the pitcher knocked down but was charged with an error after he bobbled the ball and his throw was late. Nola drew a walk, but Anderson got Kim to fly out to left to escape the inning.
Anderson struck out the side in the sixth, getting pinch hitter Jorge Matteo swinging at a changeup, Grisham on a slider and Fernando Tatis Jr. on a changeup to take his no-hit bid into the seventh.
Anderson, however, said he "felt out of his delivery" and that his pitches weren't going where he wanted. That became evident when he faced Manny Machado, who put pressure on Anderson by drawing a leadoff walk on five pitches to start the seventh.
"It'd be a lot more fun if I didn't walk that first guy," Anderson said.
Myers, the cleanup batter, took advantage of the infield holding Machado on first to get the Padres' first hit — poking a perfectly placed single to right field to put runners on first and third with no outs. Pham followed with a sacrifice fly to right to score Machado for a 1-0 lead.
"I think if I don't walk Machado to lead that off, that ball is hit right to Moran," Anderson said. "I think that was a good at-bat by him. There was a big hole over there with a guy on first. He was just trying to shoot it. He's a good baseball player."
To make matters worse, Myers took advantage of Polanco's arm by tagging up to second base on Pham's sac fly, then scored on Nola's double to the right-center gap to give the Padres a 2-0 lead.
"Really, the only poor pitch he made the whole night was the pitch to Nola," Shelton said. "He was trying to go in, and I think he left it middle."
That was it for Anderson, and the Pirates couldn't muster any offense against the Padres' bullpen, as Tim Hill (2-2) pitched a scoreless seventh for the victory, and Mark Melancon earned his 10th save by holding off a Pirates ninth-inning rally. Phillip Evans singled to right, then took out Tatis with his slide on a Polanco grounder to prevent a double play. But Melancon got Kevin Newman to ground out to first to end the game.
Anderson took the loss — and little satisfaction in his performance.
"Uh, I feel like wins and losses are the most satisfying parts," Anderson said. "Not as satisfying as you would think or as you would hope. But it was all right."
Kevin Gorman is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Kevin by email at email@example.com or via Twitter .