Budding supervillain Hunter Renfroe continued to wreak havoc as the Padres beat the Dodgers for a second consecutive game, this time 6-5 on Wednesday night at Petco Park in San Diego.
Renfroe singled home two runs in the first inning, then hit a towering two-run home run in the third inning on to the roof of the Western Metal Supply Building down the left field line.
Both were hit against Jose De Leon, who was ineffective for his second straight start. De Leon allowed five runs (three earned) in 2⅓ innings, with three walks and one strikeout.
Renfroe, who had two home runs and seven RBI in Tuesday’s San Diego win, drove in four runs on Wednesday night.
The two-run single was part of a three-run first inning for the Padres, who answered after the Dodgers took an early 2-0 lead on solo home runs by Chase Utley and Adrian Gonzalez in the top of the first.
Gonzalez, who left Tuesday’s game with a sinus infection, was still fighting the illness on Wednesday but drove in a pair of runs, also hitting an RBI double in the third inning. Gonzalez played four innings in the field on Wednesday before leaving the game.
Down a run, Josh Reddick bunted down the third base line against the shift for a hit to lead off the ninth inning, then advanced to second base on a fly ball — a drive to the wall in right center field by near hero Andrew Toles — but was stranded in scoring position as closer Brandon Maurer struck out Joc Pederson and Andre Ethier to end the game.
Joc Pederson hit a two-run home run in the fourth inning to tie the game at 5-5. It was a milestone home run in two ways for Pederson and the Dodgers.
The 25th home run of the season for Pederson joined teammates Justin Turner (27), Yasmani Grandal (27) and Corey Seager (26) in giving the Dodgers four players with 25 home runs for the fourth time in franchise history, and the first time since 1997. The previous two times the Dodgers had such a power quartet (1977 and 1997), all four players hit at least 30 home runs.
For Pederson, who hit 26 home runs as a rookie in 2015, it gave him back-to-back seasons with 25 or more home runs. He is one of only three Dodgers with two 25-homer seasons through their age-25 season, joining Duke Snider (1950-51) and Matt Kemp (2009-10). Pederson, 24, has one more year to become the first Dodger with three such seasons.
The Dodgers suffered their first loss of the season in 19 games when hitting at least three home runs.
The century club
Of the four Dodgers pitchers on Wednesday night, the one who seems most likely to end up on the NLDS roster is Ross Stripling*, who struck out four and walked none in three strong innings of long relief. He also allowed the go-ahead run that counted as earned in the fourth inning despite a missed tag at third base by Howie Kendrick on a throw that beat a stealing Manuel Margot by a mile, followed by a scoring ground ball on which shortstop Corey Seager bobbled the ball to kill his chance of throwing out Margot at the plate.
With his three innings, Stripling has 100 major league innings in his rookie season, which ranks fourth on the team.
*Luis Avilan, who pitched a scoreless eighth, his 10th consecutive scoreless appearance, has a decent shot as well.
Tribute to Vin
In the middle of the game, between innings, the Padres played a video tribute to Vin Scully at Petco Park, which among other things revealed that they gave Scully a custom surfboard as a retirement gift.
Julio Urias gets the start for the Dodgers in Thursday’s series finale, a 6:10 p.m. PT start at Petco Park. The Padres will counter with left-hander Christian Friedrich.
Home runs: Chase Utley (14), Adrian Gonzalez (18), Joc Pederson (25); Hunter Renfroe (4)
WP - Luis Perdomo (9-10): 5+ IP, 7 hits, 5 runs, 1 walk, 2 strikeouts
LP - Ross Stripling (5-9): 3 IP, 2 hits, 1 run, 4 strikeouts
Sv - Brandon Maurer (13): 1 IP, 1 hit, 2 strikeouts