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Story by Liz Alper

Photo:  Hunter Renfroe's two-run homer in the 10th gave the Padres the walk-off win.  Via @Padres on Twitter

May 15, 2017 (San Diego) - A return to National League play means a return to normalcy. The Padres felt that as they returned home tonight to host the Milwaukee Brewers for four games.  Chad Anderson started on the hill for Milwaukee against Luis Perdomo.

As always when strategies don't work, the Padres try Plan B.  So tonight, instead of scoring in the first inning, they got to work in the second inning with Hunter Renfroe’s drive to the center field gap that scored two runs.  Perdomo gave a whole new meaning to the term “pitcher magic” with an RBI triple, the first of his career, to put the Padres up 3-0.

Even that strategy didn't work.  In the fourth, Domingo Santana singled up the middle to drive two runs in.  The Padres held onto a thin thread, leading 3-2.

Contrary to past games, the Padres knew they had to add some insurance or they'd be toast and they did so in the fifth when Cory Spangenberg singled and scored Perdomo to give the Padres a 4-2 lead.

But Jesus Aguilar narrowed it back to one with his third home run of the season in the sixth.  The Padres led 4-3.

In 2015, Justin Bieber released a song called “Love Yourself.” One of the lyrics is “was I a fool to let you break down my walls?” ECM feels that Bieber wrote this about the Padres and it became clear to us in the eighth when Santana singled and drove in a run to tie the game at four.  We moved on to bonus baseball.

And as is usually the case for the Padres, they can’t last long in extra innings.  Eric Sogard blasted a solo home run to right to make the score 5-4.

But these aren’t the same extra innings Padres we’ve seen all season.  This was a new team that was determined to keep trying till the very end.  And they did. After Erick Aybar hit a base hit in the 10th, Renfroe finished the job with a two-run blast to left and it may feel like a dream, but the Padres got a walk-off of their own for once to take the series opener 6-5.

Game two is tomorrow night at the same time:  7:10 p.m.  Jimmy Nelson starts for the Brewers against Clayton Richard.