SAN DIEGO — Fernando Tatis Jr. and Wil Myers each hit two home runs and Manny Machado also connected for the San Diego Padres, who rallied to beat the St. Louis Cardinals 11-9 Thursday night to force a deciding Game 3 in their National League Wild Card Series.
San Diego’s powerful offense finally burst to life after slumbering through a 7-4 loss in Game 1 and a listless first five innings Thursday night.
Tatis and Myers are the second teammates in postseason history with multiple homers in the same game, joining Babe Ruth and Lou Gehrig of the New York Yankees in Game 3 of the 1932 World Series, including Ruth’s famed “called shot.”
The Padres are the first team in postseason history with five home runs from the sixth inning onward in a game.
Tatis, a 21-year-old budding superstar and NL MVP contender along with Machado, had a breakout game after struggling for much of the final two weeks of the regular season and with runners on base in this series.
After striking out with the bases loaded in the fourth, Tatis homered in consecutive innings and drove in five runs. Tatis’ father played for the Cardinals for three seasons during his 11-season big league career.
Myers hit a go-ahead leadoff shot in the seventh off losing pitcher Daniel Ponce de Leon and a two-run homer in the eighth.
It was the Padres’ first postseason victory at Petco Park, which opened in 2004. The first four losses were to St. Louis, which eliminated the Padres in the division series in 2005 and 2006 — the previous time the Padres made the postseason — as well as in 1996, when the Padres played at Jack Murphy Stadium.
Game 3 will be Friday, and both staffs figure to be strapped after the clubs combined to use 17 pitchers.
Tatis hit a three-run homer with two out in the sixth and Machado followed with a tying shot.
It was the second time the Padres hit consecutive homers in the playoffs. The first was when Greg Vaughn and Tony Gwynn connected off San Diego native David Wells in the fifth inning of Game 1 of the 1998 World Series at Yankee Stadium. New York swept that series.
With Austin Nola aboard on a walk, Tatis hit a no-doubt, opposite-field shot to right with two out in the seventh. He flipped his bat aside, stared into the Padres’ dugout and gestured before starting his trot.
Genesis Cabrera opened the sixth by walking Nola and rookie Jake Cronenworth before striking out Trent Grisham and making way for Giovanny Gallegos. Tatis lined a 2-2 pitch into the left-field seats to pull the Padres to 6-5. Machado followed by lining a 3-2 pitch to left-center to tie it.
Tatis was second in the NL with 17 homers in the regular season, Machado had 16 and Myers 15.
Tatis, Machado and Myers were part of the “Slam Diego” run of four grand slams in four consecutive games, and five in six games, both firsts in baseball history.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.
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