PHOENIX – Mat Latos pitched six scoreless innings in a combined three-hitter, Jerry Hairston Jr. created havoc from the leadoff spot and the San Diego Padres beat Arizona 10-1 on Sunday to avoid a three-game sweep by the last-place Diamondbacks.
San Diego was in dire need of a win after losing six of nine, including two against Arizona. The Padres got it behind a four-run fourth inning off Joe Saunders (1-1) and another solid outing by Latos (12-5).
Hairston had three hits, including his ninth homer, scored four runs and drove in two. Chris Denorfia hit a two-run homer and Adrian Gonzalez added two RBIs for San Diego, which moved two games ahead in the NL West after San Francisco's earlier loss at Atlanta.
Latos absorbed a tough-luck loss to the Dodgers on Tuesday, when he allowed two runs over six innings. The big right-hander got some support this time — San Diego had 12 hits — and was even better on the mound, baffling Arizona's hitters with his big overhand curveball and mid-90s fastball.
Latos worked around four walks over the first three innings thanks to five strikeouts and allowed two hits before being replaced by Ernesto Frieri to start the seventh. He's allowed two or fewer runs in 15 of his last 16 starts, going 11-2 with a 1.57 ERA.
Saunders had been superb in two games since being acquired from the Angels for Dan Haren in a multiplayer deal. The left-hander won at Philadelphia in his debut, then tossed a five-hit shutout against Washington on Tuesday in his first home game.
This one wasn't quite as sharp.
The Padres picked away at Saunders early, getting an RBI single from Scott Hairston in the second inning and a just-over-the-wall solo homer to left by Jerry Hairston in the third.
San Diego poured it on in the fifth, getting RBI singles from Jerry Hairston and Gonzalez, Ryan Ludwick's sacrifice fly and another run on left fielder Gerardo Parra's throwing error that elicited boos from the crowd.
Saunders lasted six innings, giving up five earned runs and eight hits.
San Diego made it 8-0 in the seventh inning off Blaine Boyer on Gonzalez's run-scoring single and Ludwick's double-play grounder. Denorfia hit his eighth homer off Rafael Rodriguez in the ninth.
NOTES: A scoring change from Saturday night's game took away an error from Arizona 3B Bobby Crosby in the seventh inning and gave a hit to Miguel Tejada. ... Diamondbacks 3B Mark Reynolds was 0 for 4 after missing the previous three games due to a pitch that hit him on the helmet last Tuesday. He also made a tough barehanded putout on Denorfia's bunt attempt in the third inning.