Thole gets railroaded, Mets lose to Padres 3-1

Ugh what happened last night? R.A. Dickey was rolling along and didn’t even allow a base hit until Yonder Alonso ripped off a single in the fifth inning. Dickey was able to keep Alonso from scoring, but in the next inning, the Padres tied the game at 1-1 without even recording a hit.

Dickey started the inning with a walk of Cabrera, who is hitting .231/.318/.325 for the season. After a sacrifice bunt by starting pitcher Clayton Richard, Cabrera swiped third base on a sneaky delayed steal. Lead-off hitter Chris Denorfia took advantage of the heist by driving in Cabrera with a sac fly.

The real drama hit in the seventh inning, though. With Carlos Quentin on first base and one out, Alonso lifted a fly ball to medium-deep right field that Scott Hairston somehow didn’t have enough time to get under. Hairston dove and missed, prompting Quentin to chug around third and try to score.

Although the relay throw got to Josh Thole in good time, Quentin bowled into the catcher, dislodging the baseball and giving San Diego a 2-1 lead. After the game, Thole said he knew exactly what to do in that situation, but he just didn’t get it done.

“I just didn’t get my free hand on the ball,” Thole said. “When I was reaching for it, as I was getting to the ball, I got hit. At least you want to have the ball in your bare hand inside the glove. I always prepare to get hit — and if they slide, they slide. It makes it easier. That’s how you draw the play up. Outfielder hits the cut man. The cut man throws a one-hopper to me. You couldn’t have drawn it up any better. I’ve just got to get my bare hand on the ball.”

The next batter, John Baker, knocked a single into left field to get Alonso in from second base, and that was it for the scoring. In the eighth, the Mets got the first two runners on base, but San Diego reliever Luke Gregerson struck out Andres Torres and David Wright before Huston Street came on and retired pinch hitter Jordanny Valdespin.

Here’s the box score. Clayton Richard only struck out two batters in seven-plus innings, but he did a great job getting ground balls and was able to record three double plays.

Tonight at 8:30 p.m. the Mets get another shot at the Padres. Jeremy Hefner and Edinson Volquez are your pitchers.

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