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By two percentage points Dont'a Hightower Jersey , the Arizona Diamondbacks are no longer in the lead in the NL West.

Losing six of seven at home will do that.

Eric Lauer limited Arizona to a run over five-plus innings, Austin Hedges homered for the first time since April 10 and the San Diego Padres opened a four-game series in the desert with a 6-3 victory over the slumping Diamondbacks on Thursday night.

The Diamondbacks fell to 1-6 in what will be a 10-game homestand and dropped into a virtual tie with the idle Los Angeles Dodgers for first place in the NL West. Arizona had been alone in first since June 8.

”We know that we are in a pennant race, if you want to call it that right now at the halfway point of the season,” Arizona manager Torey Lovullo said. ”I think we enjoy that part of the game. We know it is going to be a dogfight for the rest of the year.”

Wil Myers drove in two runs with a triple and single, and Carlos Asuaje reached base four times – a triple, RBI single and two walks – for the last-place Padres, winners for only the fourth time in 17 games.

”Offensively, I think Carlos Asuaje is probably the story of the day for us,” San Diego manager Andy Green said.

Shelby Miller (0-3) was better in his third start coming off Tommy John surgery, but still got the loss Chris Conley Jersey , allowing five runs – three earned – and five hits in 5 1/3 innings. He struck out seven and walked two.

”I feel good,” Miller said. ”I think today the command was a little bit better. I would have liked to go out there and finish the sixth, put up a zero out there and get out of the game. Have us in a little better situation, 2-1 instead of 5-1, leaving that inning but we kind of beat ourselves that inning a little bit.”

Arizona’s Ketel Marte hit a two-run homer off Matt Strahm in the eighth.

Lauer, a 23-year-old left-hander, gave up seven hits – mostly to soft contact – walked two and hit a batter, but only one of those baserunners managed to score in his first win in four starts.

Brad Hand gave up an infield single, then struck out the next three in the ninth for his 24th save in 28 opportunities.

Miller, who had allowed 11 runs and 15 hits in 8 2/3 innings during his first two starts back from the surgery Kentavius Street Jersey , got off to a rocky start in the first inning when the second batter, Asuaje, tripled to deep center and scored on Myers’ single.

But the Arizona right-hander settled down, blanking the Padres for three innings before Hedges’ line shot into the left-field seats put San Diego up 2-1 in the fifth. Hedges missed 41 games with right elbow tendinitis before being reinstated on June 24.

An error by usually sure-handed shortstop Nick Ahmed led to two unearned runs in San Diego’s three-run sixth. Asuaje led off with an 11-pitch walk and scored when Myers tripled to deep right-center.

Ahmed muffed Eric Hosmer’s hard one-bouncer to allow Myers to score. Freddy Galvis‘ two-out single off reliever Andrew Chafin brought home Hosmer and the Padres led 5-1.

BIG PITCH

With runners at first and third and two outs in the fifth, Lauer struck out Paul Goldschmidt with a pitch that Green never had seen the pitcher throw: a cutter.

”It’s fun to watch a kid throw a pitch that you’ve never seen him throw before,” Green said. ”I haven’t seen the 90 mph cutter out of him before. If I haven’t seen it, Goldschmidt hasn’t seen it, either.”

Lauer said he has been working on the cutter as his slider evolved and was ”amped up” when he threw it to Goldschmidt.

TRAINER’S ROOM

Diamondbacks: OF Steven Souza Jr. (right pectoral strain) was activated from the 10-day DL and OF Jarrod Dyson was placed on the DL with a strained right groin. Souza started in right field and went 0 for 3 at the plate with a walk in just his 15th game of the season. Dyson was injured in Arizona’s loss to St. Louis Wednesday night.

UP NEXT

Padres LHP Joey Lucchesi (4-3, 3.26 ERA) makes his fourth start since coming off the disabled list (right hip strain) and the Diamondbacks counter with RHP Zack Godley (9-6, 5.07) in the second game of the four-game series.

Nick Foles used the bye week to go back to basics.

The Philadelphia Eagles (13-3) are the first No. 1 seed to open the playoffs as an underdog mainly because Foles is the starting quarterback instead of Carson Wentz.

But Foles hasn’t lost confidence despite public perception that he can’t lead the Eagles to the Super Bowl K.J. Wright Jersey , or even a victory over the Atlanta Falcons (11-6) on Saturday in the divisional round.

”It’s just going out there and playing and staying in the zone and trusting my instincts,” Foles said.

”I’ve played this game a long time. There’s a reason I’ve been able to do what I’ve been able to do. When I play my best and I’m most comfortable, I just go out there and play.”

Foles has had success against defenses similar to Atlanta’s. The Falcons employ a Cover-3 scheme as their base defense. The three deep zones are covered by two cornerbacks and the free safety. The Seahawks have excelled at it for several years. Of course, they have a world-class secondary.

Falcons coach Dan Quinn was Seattle’s defensive coordinator when they won the Super Bowl four years ago.

Foles has never faced Quinn, but he beat the Jaguars in 2014 with the Eagles and in 2016 with the Chiefs. He beat the Seahawks in 2015 with St. Louis. Gus Bradley, who preceded Quinn as Seattle’s defensive coordinator, was Jacksonville’s coach in both games against Foles.

Foles is 65 of 105 (61.9 percent) for 842 yards with five touchdowns passes and one interceptions in those three games against Cover-3 defenses.

”You know where they are going to be. That’s the thing with this defense,” Eagles coach Doug Pederson said. ”They play with a lot of confidence. It’s an aggressive style. It’s fast flow and they are not going to pull any punches.

”They are not going to try to trick you or do anything to get in your head or anything like that. It’s just line up and try to beat us.”

The Falcons don’t blitz much but still get pressure on quarterbacks. They tied for 13th in the league with 39 sacks. Adrian Clayborn led the way with 9+ sacks, including six in one game against the Cowboys.

Atlanta allowed 17.5 points per game over the final six games and then shut down the league’s highest-scoring offense in a 26-13 win at the Los Angeles Rams in the wild-card game.

”This defense is much improved over the course of the season,” Pederson said. ”You saw it against the Rams. They are fast. They are flying to the football.

”Secondary is aggressive. Guys know how to cover. A lot of single-high. They are going to challenge our receivers and that’s what you’re seeing on tape. It’s a quality defense Janoris Jenkins Jersey , but that’s what we expect this time of year.”

Foles played well immediately after Wentz tore his ACL in Week 14. He was 20 of 48 for 279 yards with four touchdowns and no interceptions in his first five quarters versus 23 of 49 for 202 yards with one TD and two picks in the last five quarters.

”I haven’t executed as well as I wanted to the past couple of weeks, but I go out there and play and having this time to self-scout, go through practice, you realize just go out there and play,” Foles said.

”Maybe I wasn’t doing that as much those last couple of games. It’s as simple as that. Sometimes, the hardest things are the simplest things. Basically, get out of your own head and go play the game you know how to play.”

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