for this game

Hoffman ties Smith for saves record as Padres top Pirates

Sep 24, 2006 - 4:54 AM SAN DIEGO (Ticker) -- It was a record-setting night for both Jake Peavy and Trevor Hoffman. More importantly, it added up to a win for the San Diego Padres.

Peavy tied a franchise record with his 15th career double-digit strikeout performance and Hoffman tied Lee Smith for the all-time saves lead as the Padres edged the Pittsburgh Pirates, 2-1.

Rookie Josh Barfield snapped a tie with a solo home run in the seventh off Zach Duke, setting up Hoffman, who worked a perfect ninth and struck out Ryan Doumit with his patented changeup for his 478th career save and National League-leading 42nd this season.

"I guess until you get into the moment and you're out there on the mound, you aren't really sure what you're going to feel," Hoffman said. "You've done it so many times, and the routine is there, but you understand the magnitude of the situation. You're just trying to stay locked into the moment, and preserve a 2-1 win after a great job by (Peavy) and the rest of the guys."

Hoffman sat alone in the Padres' dugout for several moments, eventually sharing a hug with his son.

"It's special," Padres manager Bruce Bochy said. "With every game meaning so much, that just adds to it. We're seeing history, and I think we're all lucky to be here to watch it. That's a tough ballgame there, and he came in and got it done. He's still throwing as well as he ever has."

The win pushed San Diego (82-72) 1 1/2 games ahead of Los Angeles for the top spot in the NL West Division.

"We keep saying this, but we've got to keep coming out here and winning ballgames," Bochy said. "We know how tight this race is. If we do that, we'll take care of business."

One night after Chris Young lost a no-hit bid with one out in the ninth in San Diego's series-opening 6-2 triumph, it was Peavy's turn to spin a gem. After allowing a first-inning run on a single, walk and RBI base hit by Xavier Nady, the righthander shut down the Pirates.

"It was a big night all-around, with Hoffy doing what he did tonight and us squeaking one out," Peavy said. "In games like this, your emotions are just absolutely off the charts, and you just try to keep them in-tact."

Peavy (10-14) yielded a single in the second and a pair of base hits in the fourth before retiring 12 straight until Chris Duffy's bunt single in the eighth. He left after that frame, having allowed six hits and a walk with 11 strikeouts.

"Jake, what a job he did," Bochy said. "A real gutsy outing, too. We had two guys that were on top of their game, and we needed it tonight, with (Duke) throwing. That's a good win."

Andy Benes also has 15 career multi-strikeout games for San Diego.

Barfield belted a 2-2 off-speed offering from Duke deep into the left field seats for his 13th homer that snapped a 1-1 tie.

"Basically, what the game boiled down to was, I made a mistake late in the game and Peavy didn't," Duke said. "I threw a cutter in and I wanted to get it down, but I left it kind of in (Barfield's) happy zone. It was a little straighter than I wanted it. I felt pretty good about my performance until then."

Duke (10-14) allowed two runs and six hits in 6 1/3 innings. He walked five and struck out four while dropping to 0-10 in his last 13 road starts.

"Zach has been pitching terrific as of late," Pirates manager Jim Tracy said. "You cannot fault that kind of an effort that we got from that guy. We'll take that from anyone any time they go out there. We just couldn't cash in offensively."

San Diego tied the contest when Mike Cameron doubled home a run off the left-center field wall in the fifth.

"We're playing well," Bochy said. "We're doing a lot of good things. That's crucial at this stage of the season. Those are the teams that get there. There are some other teams playing well, and we know that. That's why the pressure is going to always be there."






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