Sizzling Padres walk-off with win

Sizzling Padres walk-off with win

SAN DIEGO -- El Coyote's "Alla en el Rancho Grande" blared in the San Diego Padres clubhouse last night as Miguel Ojeda and his teammates celebrated their 2-1 victory over the Milwaukee Brewers on Monday night before 36,152 fans at PETCO Park.

Ojeda's two-out double off Jorge De La Rosa in the bottom of the ninth scored Geoff Blum all the way from first as the Padres won their fifth straight game overall, tied a club record for consecutive home wins (10) and increased their franchise record for most wins in month (21).

The Padres, who are now 21-6 in May, are 32-19 on the season, three games ahead of second place Arizona in the National League West. They are a Major League-best 17-4 at home and 13-4 overall in one-run games.

Scott Linebrink, who pitched two scoreless innings in relief, got the win while De La Rosa got the loss. Both are 2-1.

Blum singled to center with two out in the ninth and scored on Ojeda's drive that was just fair down the left-field line.

"Even if it is old hat we're still enjoying every second of it," said Blum, who netted two of the Padres' eight hits. "This thing is all about picking up each other. No matter who falters or who needs a little extra push, there's always somebody there to pick us up. It could be any guy on any given night and Miguel Ojeda was the man tonight."

"I knew it was a lefty (De La Rosa) warming up and I was the only righty on the bench so I got myself ready to pinch-hit and fortunately I got a big hit," said Ojeda.

"I just go out there and try to hit the ball as hard as I can and believing that every time I swing the bat, something good is going to happen," Ojeda said. "It happened today. I got goose bumps watching my teammates come out to greet me and that continued in the clubhouse. I wish it happened more often.

"'Rancho Grande' is one of my favorite songs in Mexico," said Ojeda, "and El Coyote is a very good friend of mine. My teammates put it on every time I do well and that happened today. And it was great."

The Brewers had a chance to take the lead in the top of the ninth. Jeff Cirillo, a former Padre, walked, stole second and went to third when second baseman Damian Jackson muffed the throw from catcher Ramon Hernandez.

Jackson's error snapped the Padres' club record for errorless innings at 101.

With Cirillo on third and the infield drawn in, Bill Hall hit a chopper to short. Khalil Greene fielded the ball, turned to look Cirillo back, and then fired to Blum, who caught Cirillo off the bag at third and tagged him out.

Brewers right fielder Geoff Jenkins almost single-handedly kept the Brewers in the game as he made four dazzling catches.

Jenkins robbed Hernandez and Greene of hits in the third by snaring line drives. In the sixth, he went back to the scoreboard in right and leaped to catch a Phil Nevin drive, and then on the very next batter dove to grab away another possible hit by Hernandez.

The Padres, who trailed 1-0, tied the game at 1 with an unearned run in the bottom of the fifth.

Mark Sweeney, pinch-hitting for starting pitcher Darrell May -- who went five innings -- drew a walk, then moved to second on a sacrifice bunt by Dave Roberts.

Blum hit a grounder to first base, which Lyle Overbay bobbled in his glove and threw late to Brewers starter Victor Santos, covering first. Blum was safe at first and Sweeney moved over to third.

Ryan Klesko hit another grounder to first. This time Overbay was in position to make a play at home, but once again bobbled the ball and wound up taking out Klesko while Sweeney scored the tying run.

It was Overbay who drove in the Brewers' first run with a single off May in the third, scoring Junior Spivey.

Spivey had singled to center with one out and moved to second when Carlos Lee walked. Overbay then singled to center.

The Brewers threatened in the fourth when Wes Helms hit a one-out triple just out of the reach of center fielder Roberts.

On the first pitch from May, Santos tried to lay down a suicide squeeze bunt. He missed the pitch and Hernandez took a few steps up the line and tagged out Helms, who had fallen down.

In the end it was the Padres' ability to cut down two Brewers runners at home and third that paved the way for Ojeda's ultimate heroics.

The last two teams to win 21 games in a single month faced off in the 2004 World Series (Boston, 21-7 in August, and St. Louis, 21-7 in July)

The last team to win 22 or more games in a single month was the Oakland A's, who won 24 (24-4) in August 2002.

The Padres will have a chance at win No. 22 for the month on Tuesday.

Sandy Burgin is a contributor to This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.