SAN DIEGO (AP) — The San Diego Padres rallied to beat the Colorado Rockies 13-5 in the first game of a doubleheader Tuesday, hours after obtaining superstar Juan Soto of the Washington Nationals in one of the biggest trades in baseball history.
The trade was announced a few minutes before first pitch. The crowd of 23,828 at Petco Park applauded loudly when an image of Soto and Josh Bell, who also came from the Nats, was shown on the video board early in the game.
An offense that will benefit greatly from the addition of Soto, a generational talent who is only 23, came to life after the Padres fell behind 3-0. Jurickson Profar had a career-high five hits and drove in two runs, Kim Ha-seong had a career-high four hits and two RBIs, and Jake Cronenworth added a two-run homer.
Manager Bob Melvin said he was “ecstatic” about getting Soto.
“You’re talking about a premier player, and you look at what Josh Bell is doing this year, too. Those are two big bats that will be somewhere in the middle of the order. I did a little scouting in my own head what it might look like come tomorrow.
“Man, to be on this side of it is pretty cool,” Melvin added.
The manager said it was tough for the Padres to lose first baseman Eric Hosmer, who declined to waive a no-trade provision that would have allowed him to be sent to Washington. Hosmer was then traded to Boston for left-hander Jay Groome.
“But you know what, it’s baseball, you’ve got to be a pro and you’ve got to go out there and continue to play,” Melvin said. “We’ve got some really good players coming in here and everybody knows that. Once they took the field, it’s all about winning, playing hard, and winning baseball games.”
Adding Soto and Bell “is going to help us a lot,” Profar said. “We’re going to be an even better team.”