Padres Alone In First Again

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    NEWSLETTERS

     

    SAN DIEGO (AP) -- The San Diego Padres held onto first place in the NL West, beating the second-place San Francisco Giants 1-0 Saturday behind the pitching of Tim Stauffer, a solo home run by Yorvit Torrealba and an exciting game-ending double play.

    San Francisco had won the first two games of the series, closing within one percentage point in the division race as the Padres lost 13 of 15.

    But Stauffer, a long reliever making his third start of the season, allowed three hits in six innings and pitched out of his only jam in the second.

    Three relievers completed the three-hitter, with Heath Bell getting his 40th save in 43 chances after Luke Gregerson and Mike Adams pitched an inning each. Bell reached 40 saves for the second straight year.

    Aubrey Huff was hit by a pitch with one out in the ninth -- Huff also was hit Friday and scored in San Francisco's 1-0 win. Bell closed out Saturday's win when Buster Posey struck out, and Torrealba threw out pinch-runner Darren Ford trying to steal second.

    San Diego, which has not been out of first place since June 16, had a 6½-game lead before play on Aug. 26. The Padres have 21 games remaining and the Giants have 19.

    San Francisco, which had won nine of 12, hasn't been in first place since May 6.

    Rookie Madison Bumgarner (5-5) allowed three hits in seven innings, retiring 13 straight batters after Torrealba's homer. He has allowed two runs or fewer in five of his last six starts.

    Stauffer made an emergency start Monday against the Los Angeles Dodgers in place of Mat Latos, who was ill, and pitched four strong innings as the Padres stopped a 10-game skid with a 4-2 win.

    Stauffer worked his way out of trouble after Jose Guillen doubled with one out in the second, Pat Burrell walked and Jose Uribe singled. Stauffer retired Edgar Renteria on a popout and Bumgarner on a groundout.

    Torrealba's fifth homer landed in the right-field porch in the third inning. The drive on an 0-1 pitch landed about five rows deep. Torrealba had two of the Padres' four hits.

    San Diego has won six 1-0 games. The offense-challenged Padres were held to four runs or fewer for the 14th straight game.

    NOTES: Giants 3B Pablo Sandoval was held out of the starting lineup for the second straight game. Sandoval is hitting .167 (3 for 18) in the first eight games of a 10-game trip. Manager Bruce Bochy said Sandoval was expected to start in Sunday's finale. ... Padres manager Bud Black said utilityman Jerry Hairston Jr. (right elbow sprain) and CF Tony Gwynn (broken right hamate) will both travel with the club when for the start of a 10-game trip Monday in Colorado. Both players are expected to come off the 15-day DL.