SAN DIEGO (AP) — Franchy Cordero got his big chance last month when three San Diego Padres outfielders went down with injuries.
Cordero, who made his major league debut on May 27, has responded with several good performances, none bigger than in a 9-3 victory Monday night against the Cincinnati Reds.
The rookie hit his first major league home run as part of a six-run second inning that also included Yangervis Solarte’s sixth home run.
Cordero doubled in his next at-bat for his fifth multihit showing in 15 games, and made a diving catch in center field.
“He’s here quicker than expected,” manager Andy Green said, “but he’s shown he deserves to be here. He belongs here. He had a great game.”
Austin Hedges had three hits and three RBIs, and starter Luis Perdomo (1-3) helped San Diego win for just the second time in nine games.
Reds pitcher Bronson Arroyo (3-5) had allowed a major league-high 20 home runs entering Monday and took in a 6.25 ERA. Arroyo lasted 4 2/3 innings and allowed two home runs and nine runs. The 13 hits given up tied his career high set Sept. 26, 2008, at St. Louis.
“These guys were just all over me tonight,” he said of the Padres. “It looked like they knew what was coming half the time.”
Arroyo, whose ERA is 7.01, acknowledged that he needs to pitch better.
“I’ve got to catch a streak here where I can put two or three good quality outings together,” he said. “If not, I’m sure there’s going to come the time when someone’s going to take my spot if I don’t get it done.”
Cordero, 22, drove an 84-mph fastball from Arroyo, 40, over the left field wall for two runs.
Solarte followed an out later with a bases-empty blow that staked Perdomo to a 7-2 lead.
Cordero was promoted from Triple-A as the replacement to Manuel Margot, who is expected to return this month from a calf injury.
He is in his second season in center field after high error totals moved him off shortstop.
“You have to have faith in yourself and believe things are going to happen,” Cordero said through a translator.
Perdomo allowed two first-inning runs that Green attributed to subpar defensive plays by two teammates.
From there, Perdomo allowed one run before departing with two outs in the seventh.
“I felt I had more confidence attacking hitters,” Perdomo said.
He kept the Reds from adding to their National League-best home run total, allowing seven hits and two walks in all.
He said he benefited from moving to the center of the rubber during a recent bullpen session.
“He got that lead and he ran with it, fastball and slider for strikes, pounded the zone,” Reds manager Bryan Price said.
The Reds, who are 0-4 on a six-game West Coast trip, saw their majors-worst starting ERA go from 5.84 to 6.01.
Providing a slapstick moment, all four Reds infielders allowed a popup to land behind the pitcher’s mound — giving Hedges a single in the third inning.
The lopsided score allowed Price to hold out shortstop Zack Cozart for the final four innings. An All-Star candidate who brought in a .329 batting average and nine home runs, Cozart has been dealing with a thigh injury for several months.
Green said he’s certain he wouldn’t be in big leagues if not for the Arizona Diamondbacks drafting him in 2000 in the 24th round.
“I was on a golf course in Lexington, Kentucky, when they called,” Green said. “I was surprised. I didn’t even really imagine a future in the game.”
Reds: LHP Amir Garrett threw in the bullpen Sunday and is expected to come off the disabled list in time to start against the Padres on Wednesday.
Padres: RHP Trevor Cahill, sidelined since mid-May by a shoulder injury, is close to resuming bullpen sessions, Green said.
Reds: RHP Scott Feldman (5-4, 4.09) is coming off seven-inning, scoreless performance Thursday against the St. Louis Cardinals.
Padres: LHP Clayton Richard (4-7, 4.54) has induced the most groundballs in the National League, and his groundball rate is also the league’s highest.