Juan Soto’s bat will need to heat up for the San Diego Padres to rejoin the National League playoff chase
Soto is displaying signs of putting his July slump behind him, and the Padres will attempt to defeat the host Toronto Blue Jays for the second straight night when the teams meet Wednesday in the middle contest of a three-game series
Soto scored three times and drove in three with a two-run homer and an RBI double as San Diego rolled to a 9-1 victory over the Blue Jays on Tuesday
It was the second two-hit outing in three games for Soto, who batted .171 (6-for-35) over his first 10 games this month.
The three-time All-Star outfielder feels he has regained his touch — Tuesday’s homer off Alek Manoah being a prime example. The left-handed-hitting Soto capped a nine-pitch battle by sending the ball over the fence in left-center.
“It feels amazing,” Soto said of going the opposite way. “It feels like I can do whatever I want with the ball. I don’t have to pull it every time to hit a homer, so I can go to all parts. I can go to center field.”
The blast was Soto’s third of the month and 17th of the season.
Manny Machado, Gary Sanchez and Trent Grisham also homered for the Padres. The victory was just San Diego’s fourth in its past 16 road games
Machado is heating up. He has nine homers and 19 RBIs in July.
Toronto saw its four-game winning streak end on Tuesday while taking just its second loss in 10 games.
Manoah, who finished third in American League Cy Young Award balloting last season, lasted just three-plus innings in his latest rough outing.
The poor showing comes as the Blue Jays are bracing for the return of left-hander Hyun-Jin Ryu, who underwent Tommy John surgery 13 months ago and is slated to pitch for Triple-A Buffalo on Friday. It could be Ryu’s final rehab start
“Friday will kind of be telling, with how taxing it is and how he does,” Blue Jays manager John Schneider said. “A guy like him, with the work that he’s put in, where he is physically and his track record, we’ll lean on him as well as leaning on what we see.
Jose Berrios (8-6, 3.41 ERA) will take the mound for Toronto on Wednesday. The right-hander has allowed just one run and eight hits in 12 1/3 innings over his past two starts. He received no-decisions both times.
Berrios gave up one hit over seven scoreless innings against the Chicago White Sox on July 6, his last start before the All-Star break. He yielded one run and seven hits in 5 1/3 innings on Friday against the Arizona Diamondbacks.
Berrios, 29, lost his lone career start against the Padres when he gave up one run and two hits over seven innings. That was in 2017, when he pitched for the Minnesota Twins
Machado is 5-for-12 with a homer off Berrios, while Xander Bogaerts (4-for-23) and Sanchez (1-for-9, one homer) have struggled vs. the veteran.
Padres right-hander Yu Darvish (6-6, 4.65 ERA) will attempt to earn his second straight victory. Darvish struck out nine in six innings and allowed one run and five hits while defeating the Philadelphia Phillies on Friday
Darvish has a hefty 5.52 ERA in eight road starts despite compiling a 4-3 mark. The 36-year-old from Japan is 3-3 with a 2.68 ERA in eight career starts against Toronto.
He also lost to the Blue Jays in Game 2 of the 2016 American League Division Series, serving up four homers while pitching for the Texas Rangers. Darvish allowed five runs and five hits over five innings during that contest
George Springer (6-for-18, two homers), Brandon Belt (6-for-18, two homers) and Daulton Varsho (4-for-21, two homers) all have experienced success against Darvish.
–Field Level Media
Original source here
#Juan #Soto #Padres #win #Blue #Jays