Padres 1st MLB team to walk off on back-to-back HRs against D-backs
SAN DIEGO - The not-so-glamorous bottom of the San Diego Padres’ lineup delivered a stunning walk-off win against the Arizona Diamondbacks.
Pinch-hitter David Dahl and Kim Ha-seong hit consecutive home runs opening the bottom of the ninth inning to lift the Padres over Arizona 5-4 on April 3 for their third straight victory.
San Diego moved above .500 for the first time this year and became the first team in major league history with a walk-off win on back-to-back homers by its No. 8 and No. 9 batters, according to OptaSTATS.
"David Dahl hit the tying home run and I was just wanting to keep that momentum going and then I had a great pitch to hit and I was able to walk it off," Kim said through an interpreter. "I’m kind of sorry for David that I took all the spotlight, but he hit a great tying home run that was able to set me up for a great moment. Giving the team the win was the most important thing."
The Diamondbacks took a 4-3 lead on Evan Longoria’s homer in the top of the ninth, two innings after rookie Corbin Carroll tied the game with a leadoff shot to right field.
But the Padres came right back with Dahl’s leadoff drive to left-center and, with the crowd chanting his name, Kim’s long ball to left off Scott McGough (0-1), his first walk-off hit in the majors.
Tim Hill (1-0) got the win after getting the final two outs in the ninth.
Dahl, an All-Star with Colorado in 2019, signed as a free agent in December after playing in the minor leagues last year.
"I’m so excited, just thankful for this opportunity and just glad to put the team on the board right there," he said. "I’m still fired up. Still shaking."
The spotlight on the Padres this year will be on the superstar-laden heart of the order, which includes Juan Soto, Manny Machado and Xander Bogaerts. Soto hit his first homer of the year, but Dahl and Kim had the biggest hits.
"It feels great. I’ve been watching from afar the last couple of years here and it just looks so fun," Dahl said. "I’m so thankful to be a part of it now."
Soto hit a two-run shot off rookie right-hander Ryne Nelson just two batters in. Trent Grisham had a leadoff single and Soto followed with a drive to right-center. It was just the second hit of the season for Soto, obtained Aug. 2 last year in a blockbuster trade with Washington.
The Padres have World Series expectations after making it to the NL Championship Series last year and then signing Bogaerts to a $280 million, 11-year contract. They’ll get Fernando Tatis Jr. back on April 20 from an 80-game suspension for testing positive for a performance-enhancing drug.
"We expect to do a lot of damage and when Tati comes back it deepens the lineup," manager Bob Melvin said. "But when you have guys at the bottom, it gives a feeling that we can score in any inning."
The Diamondbacks tied it in the second on Nick Ahmed’s RBI single and a double-play ball by Gabriel Moreno.
Machado gave the Padres the lead back when he hit a grounder down the first-base line that caromed off the bag and got past a diving Christian Walker.
In the top of the third, with Ketel Marte aboard on a leadoff double, Machado, the third baseman, made a spectacular leaping grab of Kyle Lewis’ line drive to prevent a run.
Ryan Weathers, who made only one start last year, held the Diamondbacks to two runs and five hits in five innings.
Arizona: LHP Madison Bumgarner had an MRI in Phoenix after feeling fatigue during his first outing of the season and is OK to make his next start, manager Torey Lovullo said.
Padres: Third base coach Matt Williams, who had colon cancer surgery on Friday, dropped by the clubhouse briefly. "It put a smile on my face," Melvin said.
RHP Zac Gallen makes his second start of the season in the finale of the two-game series against Padres ace Yu Darvish, who makes his season debut after having his timetable pushed back due to Japan’s run to the World Baseball Classic title.