The Cleveland Guardians rank 29th in MLB in home runs, but they’ve slugged their way to a two-game sweep of the San Diego Padres. José Ramírez homered twice and Oscar Gonzalez crushed his second solo shot in as many days as the Guardians buried the Padres early in a 7-0 blowout.
San Diego starting pitcher Blake Snell had his shortest outing of the season, getting the hook after 3.1 innings. He was solid the first time through the order, with the exception of a solo home run surrendered to Ramírez in the first inning. It was in the fourth inning that Snell unraveled, and it was Ramírez who started pulling the thread with a leadoff home run. Oscar Gonzalez followed with a solo shot of his own to give Cleveland a 3-0 lead with no one out.
After Josh Naylor reached on an infield single, he stole second and advanced to third on an Owen Miller single. Tyler Freeman had a chance to break it open but ended up striking out on a fastball at the end of a 10-pitch at-bat. Luke Maile picked him up, collecting his second hit of the day to score Naylor. Even Myles Straw got in on the action, hitting a one-out single to load the bases.
It was at this point that Padres manager Bob Melvin opted to lift Snell in favor of reliever Wilson, who promptly gave up a two-run single to Steven Kwan to make it a 6-0 lead for the Guardians. Straw tried to score from third on an Amed Rosario flyout to right field but the throw home beat him and he was tagged out short of the plate for an inning-ending double play.
While the Guardians were cranking up the heat on Snell, Cleveland starting pitcher Cal Quantrill was as cool as a cucumber. Facing the organization that traded him to Cleveland back in 2020, Quantrill was essentially on cruise control, limiting the Padres to five hits and one walk over seven shutout innings. Even when traffic started to pile up on the basepaths in the fifth and seventh innings, he was able to find his way out of it with no damage done.
Ramírez added a sac fly in the seventh inning for the Guardians’ final run of the game, providing enough of a comfortable cushion for manager Terry Francona to hand the ball to Bryan Shaw in the eighth inning. He worked around a one-out double by Jake Cronenworth to maintain the shutout, and Enyel De Los Santos came on in the ninth inning to finish it.