Struggling second baseman Ian Kinsler hit a three-run homer off Pittsburgh reliever Richard Rodriguez in the sixth inning Thursday night to lead the Padres to a 4-3 victory over the visiting Pirates in the opener of a four-game series at Petco Park.
The loss could have been doubly costly for the Pirates. Right-handed starting pitcher Trevor Williams left the game with two out in the fourth complaining of discomfort in his right side.
The victory snapped a three-game losing streak for the Padres.
The Pirates had taken a 2-1 lead in the top of the sixth when catcher Elias Diaz scored on a wild pitch by Padres reliever Adam Warren, after advancing to third on a throwing error by Padres third baseman Greg Garcia.
Eric Hosmer singled with one out in the bottom of the sixth and advanced to second when Wil Myers drew a two-out walk from Rodriguez. Kinsler, whose batting average had tumbled to .166 after his first two at-bats in the game, then drove a 1-2 slider off the second-deck balcony of the Western Metal Supply Co. building in left.
Warren (3-1) got credit for the win. Kirby Yates earned his 17th save in as many chances with a perfect ninth inning. Rodriguez (0-3) took the loss.
The Padres took a 1-0 lead in the bottom of the third when Franmil Reyes homered to center on a full-count fastball from Williams, who allowed two hits and a walk with five strikeouts before he departed.
Pittsburgh tied the game in the fifth. After a leadoff double off Padres starter Eric Lauer, Kevin Newman moved to third on a Francisco Liriano single and scored on an Adam Frazier groundout.
Lauer allowed two runs (one earned) on seven hits and no walks with three strikeouts in 5 2/3 innings.
The Pirates pulled to within a run on Gregory Polanco’s solo homer off Padres reliever Robbie Erlin in the seventh.
—Field Level Media