DENVER — In a historically high-scoring series, the outcome was decided by a pinch-hitting pitcher.
On a bases-loaded walk, no less, off a starter who was making his first major league relief appearance.
That seems appropriate for such a wacky series.
The Padres and Rockies set a modern-era record by combining for 92 runs in a four-game series, with San Diego pitcher Matt Strahm drawing a pinch-hit, bases-loaded walk in the ninth inning to rally past Colorado 14-13 Sunday.
“A four-game series here, it feels like a month,” Padres first baseman Eric Hosmer said. “This was a grind.”
It was just another wacky day at Coors Field, especially in this split series in which the Rockies outscored the Padres 48-44 while the teams combined for 131 hits. Colorado’s Charlie Blackmon became the first player since at 1900 with 15 hits in a four-game series. Adding to the zaniness: The finale was delayed once to clean up a big puddle in foul territory despite sunny skies, and again later because of weather.
“That’s the great thing about baseball — you see things you’ve never seen before,” Rockies infielder Ryan McMahon said. “It didn’t bounce our way.”
With the Padres trailing 13-10 in the ninth, Wil Myers had an RBI single and Greg Garcia promptly tied it with a two-out, two-run triple off closer Wade Davis (1-2). The Rockies brought in starter Jon Gray, who intentionally walked two batters to face Strahm. Gray fell behind 3-1 before throwing a strike. Taking all the way, Strahm watched a fastball narrowly miss for ball four.
“The 3-2 was down and I know I can’t handle that with his velocity,” Strahm said.
Rockies manager Bud Black said he went with Gray — the starter Thursday — because of his usual ability to throw strikes. Plus, the Rockies had some relievers who weren’t available given their workload.
Gerardo Reyes (3-0) earned the win by striking out three in the eighth. Kirby Yates threw a perfect ninth for his 24th save.
Hunter Renfroe homered twice for San Diego, while Fernando Tatis Jr. had three hits, including a double and a triple.
All told, the four games took more than 16 hours to complete.
“I can’t really explain some of the things that went on and honestly I’m just happy to get out of here [with] a split, for sure,” Garcia said.
The Padres raced out to a 3-0 lead before a giant puddle suddenly formed along the right-field line due to an issue with the irrigation line. The grounds crew rolled the water away as the teams waited in the dugout during the 15-minute holdup.
In the bottom of the inning, Colorado responded with six runs. Blackmon led the way with two hits in the inning, including a solo homer to lead off.
The game was again halted in the sixth as weather moved into the area. The delay lasted 48 minutes.
Once the tarp was lifted, the Rockies quickly went to work by scoring three runs to make it 13-8. Ian Desmond, McMahon and Raimel Tapia had three consecutive doubles to start the frame. The trio went a combined 9-for-15 with six RBIs.
Blackmon remained red hot with three more hits. He has reached base safely in all 26 of his home games this season.
“Our whole lineup swung the bat good. Their lineup swung the bat good,” Blackmon said. “It was the most offensive series I’ve ever seen.”
Colorado won the opener 9-6 and the third game 14-8, while San Diego took Friday’s game 16-12. The 92 runs were the most in a four-game series since 1900. The all-time record is 112 runs between the Cleveland Blues and St. Louis Browns of the American Association in 1887, per STATS data.
Davis had his second blown save of the series.
“Wasn’t behind the baseball and making good pitches,” Davis said. “On a day like today, that’s not going to work out. … Try to wash it as much as you can. It hurts.”
Rockies righty Peter Lambert gave up eight runs and nine hits over three innings as his ERA soared from 1.50 to 6.00. He threw two pitches to the backstop. Lambert chipped in on offense with a pair of RBI singles.