Musgrove returns home, pitches Pirates to win
SAN DIEGO — Joe Musgrove of the Pittsburgh Pirates is undefeated against his hometown San Diego Padres.
Musgrove pitched well enough to survive a rough seventh inning and Colin Moran had a three-run home run and four RBIs for the Pirates, who won 6-4 Sunday to take three of four.
“I love it,” Musgrove said of pitching at Petco Park, some 15 miles from where he grew up in suburban El Cajon. “I love pitching regardless, but getting to do it in my own stadium at home, in front of my family and friends always elevates my game. I’m bummed I wasn’t able to get out of the seventh clean but I still feel really good about how I threw the ball.”
Musgrove (3-4) was the second straight alum of Grossmont High to beat the Padres. Steven Brault won Saturday night in relief of opener Montana DuRapau. Musgrove graduated from Grossmont in 2011 and Brault in 2010.
“We had our coaches out there today and a lot of family and friends from the area,” said Musgrove, who is 2-0 against the Padres after also beating them here last season. “For me and him to both snag wins in San Diego is pretty cool. I think everyone out there is pretty proud of Grossmont.”
The big right-hander took a one-hit shutout into the seventh before the Padres broke out for four runs, the big blow coming on Hunter Renfroe’s three-run homer.
Greg Garcia, who played at Valhalla High in El Cajon, was the first Padres baserunner to reach second against Musgrove when he hit a leadoff double. He scored on a single by Alex Dickerson, who played at suburban Poway High.
With one out, Eric Hosmer hit a comebacker and Musgrove tried to go to second but his throw was wide for an error. Renfroe followed with a shot into the Padres’ bullpen beyond the left-center fence, his 11th, to pull the Padres to 5-4.
Moran got his fourth RBI in the eighth when he drove in Bryan Reynolds, who doubled.
Musgrove retired his first six batters and didn’t allow a hit until Hosmer singled to left leading off the fifth. He allowed four runs, three earned, and four hits in 6 1/3 innings, with four strikeouts and one walk.
“Joe probably had one decision he’d like to take back as far as location of a pitch,” manager Clint Hurdle said. “Had a play in front of him to make, maybe get an out at first, that could have changed the direction of the inning as well, but he’s so athletic sometimes, what makes you laugh makes you cry. That’s the outing we wanted from him. The three-run homer maybe puts a dent in the numbers but his drive, direction, and conviction to pitch out there sets the tone for a lot of things that happened afterward.
“Moran has a big day at the plate. Drives in four runs. Every day somebody new stepping in and doing something significant,” the skipper said.
Musgrove said everything was working well for him.
“It’s kind of unfortunate I let things get away from me there in that last inning but I felt I was still making pitches. The one I’d take back obviously is the cutter to Renfroe. Maybe I go to first base with Hosmer’s ball instead of second base. Overall, I think I threw the ball well.”
Padres manager Andy Green said Musgrove “attacks well, uses multiple pitches and pitches to multiple locations. You look up and you put a four-spot on him, that’s not a bad thing at the end of the day.”
Felipe Vazquez pitched the ninth for his 13th save.
After a 26-minute rain delay, Moran’s homer off rookie Cal Quantrill (0-2) with two outs in the first inning helped stake Musgrove to a 4-0 lead before he threw a pitch. It was Pittsburgh’s fourth hit in a span of six batters. Josh Bell, who homered twice in Saturday night’s win, was aboard on an RBI single and rookie Reynolds, who homered Friday and Saturday nights, also singled ahead of Moran’s homer.
Moran added an RBI single in the eighth off Robbie Erlin.
Pirates: RHP Chris Archer (1-3, 5.58) is scheduled to start Tuesday night in the opener of a three-game home series against Colorado.