SAN DIEGO (AP) — Offense was hard to come by at Petco Park on Tuesday night and the Cleveland Guardians got just enough against former teammate Mike Clevinger.
Rookie Oscar Gonzalez and Andrés Giménez homered off Clevinger and the AL Central-leading Guardians beat the Padres 3-1.
Gonzalez hit a line shot to left field with two outs in the second, his fourth. Giménez drove a ball deep into the seats down the right field line leading off the fifth, his 15th.
“That's not normally the way we score, a couple solos, but we'll take it,” manager Terry Francona said.
The homers were the only hits and runs Clevinger allowed in six innings, while striking out four and walking one.
The Indians had only four hits total.
“He's got a real quick arm,” Francona said. "I don't know if he made mistakes but we got a couple home runs because that was all we had. Clev can pitch, man. We've been around him long enough to know he'll compete like crazy, too.”
Clevinger (4-5) was facing the Guardians for the second time since they traded him to San Diego in a nine-player deal during the pandemic-shortened 2020 season. The right-hander made his season debut against in the opener of a doubleheader at Cleveland on May 4 and got a no-decision in San Diego’s 5-4 victory.
The Padres hoped Clevinger would help them make a deep playoff run in 2020. Instead, he injured his elbow during his final regular-season start, missed the first-round series against St. Louis and was forced out of the Division Series opener against the Dodgers in the second inning. He had Tommy John surgery and missed all of 2021.
San Diego, which came in leading Milwaukee by 1 1/2 games for the NL's third wild card spot, lost for the sixth time in 10 games.
Earlier in the day, Padres star shortstop Fernando Tatis Jr. privately apologized to his teammates for the 80-game suspension imposed by Major League Baseball after a positive test for a performance-enhancing substance, then publicly expressed remorse.
Nick Sandlin (5-2) pitched 1 1/3 innings for the win and Emmanuel Clase pitched the ninth for his 29th save.
The Padres pulled to 2-1 in the fifth when Austin Nola hit a leadoff double, advanced on Jurickson Profar's groundout and and scored on Jake Cronenworth's single.
Jose Ramirez hit a two-out RBI single in the eighth to give Cleveland a 3-1 lead.
Cleveland starter Aaron Civale was pulled one batter after allowing Cronenworth's RBI single. He gave up one run and four hits, struck out four and walked two.
“I don't think I had the best command tonight, as the ball and strike ratio would show, but I acknowledged that early and made the most of what I had," Civale said. "I just tried to keep them off balance by mixing it up as best I can.”