Pitch clock bites Padres’ Machado, who earns ejection vs. D-backs

Apr 4, 2023, 2:30 PM | Updated: 4:35 pm

Head coach Bob Melvin argues with umpire Ron Kulpa #46 after Manny Machado #13 of the San Diego Pad...

Head coach Bob Melvin argues with umpire Ron Kulpa #46 after Manny Machado #13 of the San Diego Padres was called out on a timed third strike during the first inning of a game against the Arizona Diamondbacks at PETCO Park on April 04, 2023 in San Diego, California. (Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images)

(Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images)

Manny Machado hasn’t started 2023 up to his elite standards, but it didn’t help his San Diego Padres against the Arizona Diamondbacks when he earned a first-inning ejection Tuesday.

He held a full count with two outs in the bottom of the frame — then as he attempted to ask for time from the umpire, was quickly called for strike three with the pitch clock wearing down before he set up.

The D-backs walked off the field. But Machado and San Diego manager Bob Melvin stayed on the field, getting in the face of the umpire before Machado was ejected.

While it’s hard to determine where the clock stood at the time of Machado’s ejection, Machado seemingly took exception that he asked for time and had been struggling while tinkering with his gloves.

Machado is batting .263 (5-of19) this season with four strikeouts, no walks and no extra-base hits thus far.

The Padres replaced him in the lineup with Nelson Cruz, the 42-year-old DH who did not have a hit in seven at-bats to start this season.

Cruz hit a home run off Gallen in the fourth inning to give the Padres a 3-0 lead. The D-backs, though, scored seven runs over the final four frames to win, 8-6.

Arizona visited San Diego for the second game of a two-game series on Tuesday before taking Wednesday off and hosting the Los Angeles Dodgers Thursday night for its home opener.

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