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Apr 11, 2024 11:16 pm

After first series win of season, Padres battle Dodgers

Michael King

San Diego right-hander Michael King walked seven batters in four innings during the Padres’ 13-4 win over the San Francisco Giants on March 31.

In his next start, a 4-0 win vs. the Giants on Saturday, he walked just one in seven innings.

King and the Padres hope his command will remain sharp Friday night when they open a three-game road series against the Los Angeles Dodgers.

What was the difference in King’s two starts?

“It was kind of a setup and then just one little thought process of, as I’m going down the mound, making sure I’m seeing my sights,” King said. “I always use my left elbow — make sure I can see the catcher over that left elbow and then fire. And I felt like that was kind of my trigger, and it got me into better positions and I was able to command the zone a lot better.”

King (2-0, 3.14 ERA) beat Los Angeles in relief on March 21 in Seoul, South Korea, lasting 3 1/3 innings and allowing three runs on four hits and three walks with five strikeouts. In his only other career appearance against the Dodgers, he struck out three in two hitless innings last June while a member of the New York Yankees.

The Padres travel to Los Angeles after taking two of three at home against the Cubs for their first win in five series. They routed Chicago 10-2 on Wednesday, getting three hits from Jurickson Profar, including a two-run homer, and scoring multiple runs in four innings.

Meanwhile, Los Angeles is coming off a 3-2 loss at Minnesota on Wednesday that came down to inches. The Dodgers appeared to tie the score in the seventh inning when Freddie Freeman doubled into the right field corner, scoring Shohei Ohtani from first.

However, the Twins appealed plate umpire Marvin Hudson’s safe call, and replay revealed Ohtani was tagged just before he touched the plate, thanks to Carlos Correa’s relay throw from short right field.

“That’s as clean as it gets,” said Los Angeles third base coach Dino Ebel, who waved Ohtani around third. “They made a perfect throw.”

Dodgers pitcher Yoshinobu Yamamoto (1-1, 4.09 ERA) made more than a few perfect pitches in his latest start, Saturday on the road against the Cubs. Yamamoto allowed just three hits over five scoreless innings, striking out eight in a 4-1 victory, his first major league win.

Since giving up five runs and lasting just one inning during a 15-11 loss to San Diego last month in Seoul, Yamamoto has tossed 10 scoreless innings, striking out 13 and permitting just five hits and two walks. He struck out the side in the first inning on Saturday after Chicago filled the bases with no outs.

“I think he just didn’t want a repeat of Seoul,” Dodgers manager Dave Roberts said. “You could see it. He got off to a slower start (against the Cubs), and he found a way to reach back and obviously limit or have no damage in that inning. There’s just a lot of fight. … Great competitor.”

–Field Level Media

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