The Padres swept the Cincinnati Reds Wednesday and watched what they hope will be the first of many wins for MacKenzie Gore.
Gore, 23, went five innings in the 6-0 win, giving up no runs and four hits while striking out seven in his first major-league win.
The 2017 draft pick long has been touted as a top prospect, but hit a road bump in his development last year. But after a strong spring, he got his chance due to Blake Snell’s adductor injury.
Gore summed it up for Bally Sports San Diego, calling Wednesday “an awesome day.” Manager Bob Melvin noted that his rookie had some command issues and fell behind in the count at time, but also pointed out how Gore handled the situations.
“What you really kind of look for sometimes with a younger guy is how he’s going to respond, you know maybe not throwing the ball exactly where he wants to at times, and then, the next thing you know he gets through five innings with no runs and pitching in the same fashion that he has been since spring training, going forward,” Melvin said.
Jurickson Profar led the offense with two hits and staked Gore to a two-run lead in the fourth inning with a home run off Reds starter Vladimir Gutierrez.
That was on top of the boost he gave the club in the top of the inning with a throw from left field to cut down Joey Votto at the plate and keep the Reds off the board.
The Padres – who beat the Reds 4-1 and 6-2 to open the series – now head into an off day before welcoming the rival Los Angeles Dodgers to Petco Park Friday. Nick Martinez, Yu Darvish and Sean Manaea are set to start for the Padres.