CHICAGO -- Andrew Cashner's first start against the team that drafted him with its top pick didn't go the way he'd hoped.
Cashner (1-2) lasted four innings and gave up five runs, four earned, on six hits, four walks, one hit batter and a wild pitch in the San Diego Padres' 6-2 loss to the Chicago Cubs on Wednesday night.The right-hander, who was dealt to San Diego in January 2012 for Anthony Rizzo, had trouble from the beginning and gave up runs in Chicago's first four innings."It felt like I was fighting the whole time tonight," Cashner said. "I never really got in a groove out there and didn't really execute very well."Cashner was asked whether his wildness was caused by pitching against the Cubs at Wrigley. He said "no."Instead, Padres manager Bud Black said consistency was the problem."There were a couple of at-bats where it looked as though he might find it, but he could never get in a groove from really I thought, the first inning on," Black said.The Cubs took a 1-0 lead in the first on Starlin Castro's RBI single that drove in Julio Borbon. Cashner eventually loaded the bases on a walk to Nate Schierholtz, but got out of the jam when he tagged Rizzo out at home after a pitch got away from catcher John Baker.Chicago doubled its lead in the second when Darwin Barney scored on Chicago pitcher Scott Feldman's double to right. It was Feldman's first hit in nine at-bats with the Cubs and his second career RBI.The Cubs added two more runs in the third when Rizzo and Castro scored on Dioner Navarro's two-run double off the wall in right-center."I was bad. I didn't command my fastball very well," said Cashner, who was victorious in his previous start against San Francisco on Thursday. "When I was missing it was just off the plate instead of going after guys. I really never got a feel for my secondary stuff in the strike zone."While Cashner was struggling, Feldman was having a career night.Feldman (2-3) pitched his first career complete game, allowing two runs and three hits while walking one. After Chase Headley singled with two outs in the first, Feldman retired the next 18 batters and didn't allow another Padres baserunner until Carlos Quentin reached on an error by third baseman Luis Valbuena.Feldman struck out the side in the third and fourth innings, ending up with a career-high 12 strikeouts."He was as good as anyone I've seen this year," Headley said.Feldman took his shutout into the eight, but Jedd Gyorko hit his first career home run, and Headley then followed in the ninth with his third."I was glad to get it over with," Gyorko said of his first homer. "Hopefully it doesn't take another 100 at-bats to get my next one."Those two homers were only blips for Feldman, who lobbied Cubs manager Dale Sveum for a chance at his first career complete game."It's something I've been wanting to do for a while," Feldman said. "Always seemed like my pitch count got up or (I) got taken out a little before that could happen."Feldman was supported by an offense that had little trouble against Cashner. Sveum started six left-handed hitters, plus Feldman.Sveum said that was going to force Cashner to throw more breaking balls. And the result was his wildness."When you have seven left-handers in a lineup you can't keep pumping fastballs," Sveum said. "That's why I always say the importance of having left-handed bats against right-handed pitching is it's just hard to go through left-handed bats."
Rizzo went 1 for 4 with a stolen base for the Cubs. Cubs LF Alfonso Soriano was given the night off. He played in the Cubs' first 26 games, hitting .263 with one home run and two runs driven in. ... Padres pitcher Tyson Ross worked 1 2/3 innings of relief Tuesday night in a rehab assignment with Triple-A Tuscon, allowing three hits, three runs and two walks while striking out two and throwing 43 pitches. Ross has been on the disabled list since April 20, retroactive to April 18, with a subluxation in his left, non-throwing shoulder. ... Cubs pitcher Matt Garza threw 2 2/3 innings Wednesday in a rehab assignment with Double-A Tennessee, allowing one hit and two walks on 42 pitches. Garza hasn't pitched for the Cubs yet this season after suffering a strained left lateral muscle during spring training. ... Thursday's pitching matchup is San Diego's Eric Stults (2-2, 5.67) against Chicago's Travis Wood (2-1, 2.25).
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