SAN DIEGO (AP) -- Brian Giles was too much for the Washington
Nationals on Sunday.
"That was a good win," Giles said. "Obviously you don't want
to leave home after a six-game homestand with a losing record."
San Diego, which went 3-3 at home, goes to New York and Houston
for a six-game trip beginning Tuesday. The Padres maintained a
two-game lead over Arizona and the Los Angeles Dodgers in the NL
"I almost caught it," Church said. "I didn't think the ball
would be traveling that far. He's the kind of guy you need to get
out. He's a table-setter. It's important to get him."
Giles, who hit a two-run homer off Livan Hernandez in the
seventh, then singled up the middle off Bowie, who entered in the
"I wanted him to face the two left-handers," Nationals manager
Frank Robinson said, referring to Roberts and Giles. "That's what
happens basically when you only have one left-hander in your
bullpen. That's just the nature of the beast with this ballclub."
Washington's Alfonso Soriano hit his 35th homer, his 31st career
homer leading off a game.
Hernandez, who took a five-hit shutout into the seventh, gave up
two runs and seven hits in seven innings, striking out seven and
Soriano's 35th homer of the season put the Nationals ahead.
Washington left the bases loaded in the fourth when Hernandez
grounded out, and Roberts left the bases full in the bottom half
when he struck out on a 59 mph curveball.
Hernandez held the lead until the seventh, when Roberts singled
with two outs and Giles hit his eighth homer.
"He's a terrific pitcher," Giles said. "He can throw that
curve 73-74 mph or he can throw it like he did to Roberts. He
varies his speed with it 10-to-15 miles an hour. It's a tough pitch
to hit, and it's a pitch that I took for a strike in the previous
Washington tied the score in the eighth after Marlon Anderson
walked and Brian Schneider singled. With runners at the corners and
Soriano at the plate, Schneider stole second and Anderson came home
when shortstop Geoff Blum misplayed Josh Bard's throw, which wound
up in center field.
Trevor Hoffman pitched a 1-2-3 ninth ahead of Brocail's perfect
10th. Hoffman was the beneficiary of a call when third base umpire
Brian Runge ruled Ryan Zimmerman's drive down the left-field line
foul. TV replays showed the ball hitting the yellow padding on the
left-field foul pole.
Soriano tied Chuck Knoblauch for eighth on the leadoff
homers list. ... Padres hitting coach Merv Rettenmund was ejected
by plate umpire Paul Emmel for arguing balls and strikes during the
bottom of the fifth. ... Roberts stole his 33rd and 34th bases of
the season and has eight steals in his last 10 games. ... Padres
reliever Alan Embree, who got an out in the sixth, has not allowed
an earned run in 13 appearances and nine innings since July 17.