SAN DIEGO — Eric Show--it rhymes with somehow--struck out 12 Philadelphia Phillies Tuesday night and left in the ninth inning to a rare standing ovation.
But three Phillies were standing on base at the time, and it was up to Goose Gossage to protect a four-run lead with one out.
Ron Roenicke hit his first pitch for a two-run double.
Jeff Stone drove in a run on a ground out. It was up to Darren Daulton, a 24-year-old catcher, but Gossage struck him out with a slider--the count full--to preserve the 4-3 Padre victory.
Show, fresh off the standing ovation, stood up the media afterward. But his 12 Ks were one short of his career-high 13 set against San Francisco on April 26. He was marvelous in the midst of fourth- and fifth-inning jams, and trouble came in the ninth inning only because he'd been tired out from running the bases the previous inning.
As the Padres entered the eighth, they held a 2-0 lead. Kevin McReynolds had accounted for both runs, homering on a 3 and 0 pitch to dead center in the seventh--his sixth of the season. Strange, too, but the ball might have been caught. It sailed to center, and Jeff Stone, who'd just made a diving belly-flop to rob Steve Garvey of a sure double, looked to be under the ball.
He just stood there.
The ball barely made it over the fence.
"I'm glad he didn't jump," McReynolds said.
Stone: "I didn't know how far it was to the wall."
In the eighth, Show led off with a single to left. He stood on first base as the crowd of 13,997 clapped for him.
Usually, they boo.
Next up was Tim Flannery, who had replaced Bip Roberts in the fourth inning when Roberts injured his right groin. It was Flannery vs. Phillies pitcher Kevin Gross. Remember? It was Gross who had body-slammed Flannery last year when former Phillie John Denny and Flannery were about to brawl. Flannery's shoulder then ached for months.
Flannery tried sacrifice bunts twice, and twice he missed. Now forced to swing away, he ripped one down the line in right, a sure triple. Show scored easily from first. Flannery came running to third, and the relay from second baseman Juan Samuel was low and skipped by third baseman Rick Schu. Error, Samuel.
Flannery ran around to score, an inside-the-park-home run. Sort of.
Later, in the clubhouse, Bruce Bochy told Flannery: "That's a home run in little league."
Flannery: "Hey, I'm counting it. That's two this year."
Show walked slowly to the mound for the ninth. He picked up the rosin bag and the ball. He gave up a single to Von Hayes. Glenn Wilson popped out to Flannery, a ball Flannery almost dropped. Schu singled to right, Hayes taking third. The crowd began screaming for "Goose!"
Show walked Tom Foley, and the crowd got Goose.
They also got a close game.
"My hit . . . that's probably what tired out Eric," Flannery said. "I went out to the mound and said, 'Sorry I made you run.' He said, 'I wish you'd hit a real homer.' "
Flannery, himself, should be commended. Roberts got hurt--he fielded a ground ball and hurt his groin when he pivoted to throw--and Flannery wasn't prepared to go in.
"When I don't start, every third inning I go to the clubhouse, get a Payday (candy) bar and dip it in coffee," Flannery said. "I was still chewing it as I ran out to second."
Roberts chewed the fat with reporters, later. He gave the thumbs-up sign. Then, he said: "Let's push no panic buttons. It's just a little sore right now."
The groin is possibly torn, and he won't play today. His status is day-to-day.
Show got by inning by inning. Things got started in that fourth. Samuel, having reached first when Roberts was hurt, stole second, and then Hayes walked. With two outs and two men on, Show faced Wilson.
The count went to 3 and 2.
Wilson then struck out on ball four, a breaking ball way outside.
Maybe Show was unnerved by now. Phillie pitcher Gross was matching him each inning. As the fifth began, the score was 0-0.
Then, Show walked the first two Phillie batters.
Gross sacrificed the runners--Schu and Foley--to second and third. It was up to Stone. Stone struck out. It was up to Daulton. He, too, struck out. The third strike, on a 3-2 fastball, was a check swing. Daulton, thinking he'd walked, ran to first.
But third base umpire Joe West dramatically waved him back, saying Daulton actually had gone all the way around, and the crowd of 13,997 rocked.