CHICAGO (AP) - When asked through a translator if he was nervous in his second big-league start, Tsuyoshi Wada said simply, “Yes.”
It showed as Wada (0-1) allowed five runs on five hits and four walks in four-plus innings in an 8-3 loss to San Diego on Wednesday night.
The 33-year-old Japanese left-hander seemed shaky from the opening pitch in his first appearance at Wrigley Field, after allowing just one unearned run in a no-decision at Cincinnati on July 8.
The Padres scored two runs in the first, using a four-pitch walk to Chris Denorfia, triple by Yangervis Solarte and sacrifice fly by Carlos Quentin. Even if Chicago briefly tied the game at 3 on Luis Valbuena’s three-run homer in the fourth, San Diego chased Wada in the next inning.
“I didn’t have the control and overall wasn’t as good as in Cincinnati,” Wada said.
Cubs manager Rick Renteria saw pretty much the same thing.
“It seemed like he just didn’t get into a rhythm,” Renteria said. “When you watched him on the mound today, he was constantly fidgeting.”
Tommy Medica hit a go-ahead RBI double in the fifth inning, Ian Kennedy pitched six strong innings as the Padres rolled to the win.
On a cool, unseasonably summer night in Chicago, Kennedy (8-9) won his third straight decision. He allowed three runs, three hits, while striking out six and pitching around a season-high five walks. He worked out of a bases loaded jam in the fifth inning.
“You’ve just got to tip your hat to (Kennedy), Renteria said. “We just weren’t able to put enough together to win that ballgame.”
Medica finished with three hits and drove in two runs for the Padres, who came into the game with baseball’s worst batting average at .215.
The Cubs have lost 12 of their last 15 games.
The Padres added on to their early 2-0 lead in the fourth inning. Jeff Francoeur, who had his contract purchased from Triple-A El Paso before the game, singled in his major league season debut, then scored from first on Chris Nelson’s double. He finished the game 1-for-3 with a walk a sacrifice fly.
Kennedy was unable to hold the 3-0 lead in the fourth inning. He allowed a pair of walks, then with two outs, Valbuena drove Kennedy’s 0-1 pitch into the right-field bleacher to tie the game. It was Valbuena’s sixth of the season.
Wada, who struggled with his control the entire night, walked the first two batters in the fifth. His night ended when Medica hit an RBI ground-rule double in the left-field ivy.