Sloppy defense spoils Yankees’ shot at a San Diego sweep in 5-2 loss

SAN DIEGO – The Yankees scored the first run of Sunday’s game in the sixth inning, but some sloppy defense ultimately led to a 5-2 loss and a missed opportunity to sweep the Padres.

Gleyber Torres initiated an unfortunate series of events for the Yankees, beginning the bottom of the sixth with a fielding error. The second baseman, picked off earlier in the game, tried to backhand a ball that didn’t need to be backhanded, leading to the Padres’ first baserunner of the inning. Manny Machado then worked a walk, which ended Clarke Schmidt’s day.

Victor González walked the first batter he faced in relief before Jackson Merrill tied the game at one on a fielder’s choice.

From there, Ha-Seong Kim pushed a bunt toward Anthony Rizzo, who charged in from first. Rizzo had time to make a play at the plate, but he couldn’t handle the ball as the Padres took a 2-1 lead.

Luis Arraez then lined an RBI single to center before Fernando Tatis Jr. plated a fourth run with a swinging bunt single.

The Padres scored again in the seventh inning on a double from Machado.

The Yankees’ defensive woes spoiled another strong start from Schmidt, who gave up one earned run over five innings and 101 pitches. While the right-hander walked three, he also held San Diego to just as many hits as he struck out six.

The 28-year-old now has a 2.52 ERA after 11 starts.

Meanwhile, Padres starter Joe Musgrove enjoyed one of his better starts of the season. He entered the game with a 6.14 ERA, yet the righty limited the Yankees to one run over 5.1 innings. He also totaled six hits, zero walks, five strikeouts and 87 pitches.

The Yankees’ one run off of Musgrove came in the top of the sixth when Juan Soto smoked a double over Tatis Jr. in right field. The two-bagger scored Anthony Volpe, who extended his hitting streak to 19 games with a single before swiping second base.

Alex Verdugo added an extra run on a solo homer in the ninth inning.

Unable to sweep in San Diego, the Yankees will venture up the California coastline for a three-game series in Anaheim, which begins Tuesday. DJ LeMahieu is expected to make his 2024 debut in the opener.

Nestor Cortes, Luis Gil and Carlos Rodón are the Yankees’ probable pitchers for the series. Griffin Canning, Tyler Anderson and Patrick Sandoval are lined up for the Angels.