March 2009

Only Nine

  • 9-4 Rangers

The number nine is one of the “sacred” numbers in baseball. It represents the length of a baseball game, not in terms of time or mintues, but in terms of duration. Each team has at least eight chances to give their team some runs, and either one or both of the teams will get a ninth chance, depending on the game situation. That ninth inning is usually pretty special. Sometimes, your closer will come out in a close game to try to save it. Other times, your team has to face the other team’s closer. If the home team is behind, they get one last chance to come from behind, to get a walk-off hit. If it’s a tied game, the home team only needs to score one run, and the game is over. The ninth inning can be very exciting.

In the Padres-Rangers game yesterday, the Padres’ pitching gave up nine runs. This is an improvement, as they had given up 12 runs on Tuesday. I mean, only nine! Cesar Ramos started, and boy did he start early. Meaning, he started the Rangers’ slaughter of us early. How’s four hits and three runs…in the top of the first?! In his three innings of work, he gave up five runs on seven hits.

joe thatcher.jpgThis is Joe Thatcher. JOE THATCHER CANNOT PITCH. Period. Well, sure, he can throw a ball to the plate, but that’s different. I can throw a ball to the plate! Being a “pitcher” as opposed to a “thrower” means being able to use your pitches, use the plate, and get batters out. JOE THATCHER IS A RUN-GIVER. He helps us lose. He used to be able to pitch, but he’s lost it. Lost it lost it lost it. Sure, it’s still Spring Training, and these pitchers are still getting into form, but still. Joe Thatcher gives up runs, whether it’s Spring Training, the regular season, or Single-Single-A. He did pretty well in Triple-A last year, but he can’t pitch in the majors. It’s too bad, but it’s the truth. Last year, he pitched 25.2 innings for the Padres, and he gave up 25 runs. NOT GOOD. In this spring so far, he’s pitched 7.2 innings, giving up ten hits and four runs. OK, so he’s doing a little better, but still. He can’t be on this roster.

The point of that whole rant was that Thatcher gave up two runs in yesterday’s game. I think the Spring Training stats are not up to date, so maybe Thatcher’s thrown 8.2 innings with twelve hits and six runs. I think that’s right…

Jae Kuk Ryu and Edwin Moreno each gave up a run, but Arturo Lopez and Matt Buschmann had scoreless innings. Obviously, the pitching is going through the dead-really-really-dead arm stage. I just hope they break out of it soon. Real soon. 

Kyle Blanks got the Padres’ first hit of the game in the fifth with a double. Will Venable then drove him in. Chris Burke walked and got a hit. Drew Macias hit a two-run homer in the ninth, but it was way too little too late. We are not doing well. But of course, it’s only spring. I don’t know. I just don’t want to go through a season like last year again.

If you guys haven’t seen it yet, you have got to watch this video on MLB.com. It’s called “Sounds of Spring Training”, and it’s hilarious. Check it out here. If the link doesn’t work, search for it. It’s amazing.

Last night I got to play some version of baseball with a bunch of my friends, and it was so much fun! We used a really soft ball, and all the fielders spread out wherever, but it was a blast. It’s one thing to play catch with my two younger brothers, but it’s quite another to actually play an “organized” game with people my age. I had so much fun! I was playing catch with a real baseball with a friend after the game, and I got hit in the side of my mouth area! I really should have caught the ball, but oh well. The first thing I was worried about was my retainer and all the work (braces, etc) I’ve had done in my mouth. But thankfully, everything was intact. I think my retainer cut the inside of my lip with the impact or something, though. It’s all swelled up, but I’m just thankful that it wasn’t worse!

Now, the Padres are having some injuries too. We found out yesterday that pitcher Mark Worrell is having some elbow soreness. This is the guy who we got in the Khalil Greene trade, the one who has that funky sidearm delivery. Also, Chris Young is going through his annual elbow tendonitis.

Tonight we are playing the Mariners in Peoria, but we are technically the visiting team (the Padres and the Mariners share the same facility, so there’s a bit of a rivalry). It will be an interesting game. Cha Seung Baek is starting.

GO PADRES!!

(photo credit: cache.daylife.com)   

USA!! USA!!

  • 6-5 Team USA

What a game. What a game. Just like, wow. It was like a playoff game, full of so much emotion and nail-biting. It was really a back-and-forth game. I didn’t watch it, and I didn’t even listen to it. But this morning I read the articles, watched the highlights. What a great victory for the United States!

Ted Lilly started the game for USA and gave up three runs in 3.1 innings. Padres’ closer Heath Bell gave up a run, as did Jonathan Broxton. The other four relievers did not give up a run or a hit. Kevin Youkilis hit a solo homer.

But the most exciting part, of course, was the bottom of the 9th. Yesterday, Jane Heller asked us on her blog if we liked blowouts or pitcher’s duels better. I wasn’t really sure, because I love both, but I think I got my answer with this game. I love these tight games where both teams keep chasing each other. One team gets a couple runs, the next team scores three, the first team ties it, the second team get another, the first team gets three to go ahead, and on and on and on. I love those games where it comes down to the bottom of the ninth, to do-or-die. And I love it when my Padres are able to come out on top, with a walk-off come-from-behind win. Oh man, that’s my favorite.

Last night’s game was very much like that. The score was 5-3 Puerto Rico going into the bottom of the ninth. Not impossible for this team of All-Stars to come back from. Here’s how it went down: Shane Victorino and Brian Roberts singled, followed by a walk to Jimmy Rollins. Kevin Youkilis walked in a run to bring USA that much closer. Then David Wright came to the plate.

With a count of 2-1, he hit a ball down the right field line, driving in two to win the game. His teammates jumped on him near second base (I really hope Jake wasn’t in that pile!!!). Watching the video of that walk-off hit just gave me chills. I LOVE walk-offs! It was so neat to hear Matt Vasgersian call the hit. How many times have I heard him call those walk-offs for the Padres, with his trademark, “Santa Maria!”? It was great to hear Matty V. again, obviously enjoying his new job.

What a great victory! There weren’t that many people in the stands, but the energy in that 9th inning felt so much like a playoff game. And so, the USA rolls on. But Jake needs to come back!!!! Also, Korea defeated Japan 4-1 last night at Petco Park. Very cool. I’m sure Hyun Young is excited :)      

  • 12-7 Angels

Alright, I’m changing topics to the Padres-Angels game yesterday. Nastiness! Our pitching is absolutely miserable!! Josh Geer, six runs on nine hits in 3.2 innings. Scott Patterson, three runs on three hits in 0.2 innings. Justin Hampson, three runs on four hits in one inning. Greg Burke, Ivan Nova, Chris Britton, and Mark Worrell were able to throw scoreless innings. Ah man, it’s bad. Our pitching is really bad.

But we are hitting. Jody Gerut hit his first homer of the spring, a two-run shot. Kouz and Chase Headley each drove in a run. Kyle Blanks had two hits. Chris Burke had a two-run single. Chris Snelling drove in a run. We hit very well. I was pleased. At one point we came from behind to take a 7-6 lead. Of course, it was quickly given up by the pitching staff, but at least we were able to get up on top. I’m telling you, our hitting cannot keep up with our pitching. They give up runs all through the game, and our hitters just can’t kept up. From Saturday, March 7th to yesterday’s game, our pitching staff has given up 85 runs. That’s ten games.  ACK!!!!

The Padres wore their green caps in honor of St. Patrick’s Day yesterday. It didn’t exactly match the navy blue uniforms, but it was cool. Broadcaster Andy Masur was commenting on the fact that it looked like Christmas in the stands, with all the Angels fans and green for the holiday.

After the game the Padres made a few roster moves. Wade LeBlanc was sent to Triple-A. Mike Ekstrom, Cesar Carrillo, and Travis Denker were also moved to Triple-A. Chris Britton, Matt Buschmann, Pete Ciofrone, Mitch Canham, and Cedric Hunter were sent to minor league camp. LeBlanc was considered a candidate for the rotation, but he needs a lot more time. He struggled as a starter when he came up near the end of last year, and he did not do well this spring either. The Britton move was kind of suprising. Sure, he wasn’t doing great, but the Padres were looking at him as an 8th inning set-up guy. But it was not to be. Chris has been told that he will not make the team out of Spring Training. That’s kind of sad, but these moves need to be made.

And now, the worst news of the week (even worse that the Padres’ pitching problems): TREVOR IS HURT!!!!!!! AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!! Panic!!!!!! Well, it’s not that bad, but he’s an old dude. He needs to be very careful with himself. He has a Grade 1 (the least serious) strain of his right oblique muscle, sustained the day after his outing on Friday. The thing with Trevor is that he doesn’t pitch that much, and even when he does, it’s just one quick inning. As a result, he has to keep in shape while he’s not pitching. This is going to be tough for him, but hopefully he will be able to rebound with no further damage. AHHHH!!!! We need you healthy for your last year as a Padre in 2010, Trevor!!! Get well soon!!!!

get well soon.jpgToday we are playing the Rangers again in Peoria. Cesar Ramos will pitch three innings, followed by Walter Silva for two. Let’s see how many runs our pitching will give up today!

GO PADRES!!!

(photo credit: arenaflowers.com)     

Always Belong to Us

As some of you may have heard, LaDanian Tomlinson signed a restuctured three-year contract with the San Diego Chargers last week. To be honest, it really went under my radar. I heard a snippet in the morning news on the radio, but that was it. Then again, I don’t listen to sports radio, so I probably missed it. After the Chargers lost in the playoffs, I realized that I had jumped on the bandwagon, and once they were done, I jumped right off. Now I don’t want anything to do with football. It’s baseball time. So, I am not here to talk about LT that much. Yeah, I’ve gotta talk about Trevor…again.

Trevor Hoffman and LaDainian Tomlinson are two major San Diego sports icons. Trevor was here for sixteen seasons. LT has been here for eight years. In fact, he was drafted by the Chargers. Now, there’s no doubt that both of these men have made huge impacts on the city of San Diego, both on the field and off. I don’t know if it’s just because they don’t like the Padres, but people are comparing Trevor to LT and saying that Trevor has less class because he left.

On Sunday I read the weekly letters to the editor in the sports section of the Union-Tribune. Aw man that drove me nuts! First off, there’s one from a man who lives in San Diego and says that, “…in the end he (Trevor) did not demonstrate the class of the athlete we had thought we knew so well.” This guy is talking about the fact that Trevor “takes the bigger money to leave town.” Uh, correction! Trevor was kicked out of San Diego. He didn’t have a choice but to leave. Sure, he could have taken the $4 million, but the Padres’ front office didn’t want him back. That was obvious. I mean, $4 million, no options. Not good enough. The front office did not treat him with the respect he deserves and has earned over all these years in San Diego!! Trevor’s brought so much to this city, and to this team! It was one of the worst things the Padres’ front office has ever done. 

Tony Gwynn spend twenty years in a Padres uniform. He was never part of another team. He certainly took less money to stay in San Diego. And guess what? Trevor has done that too. The last time Trevor was a free agent, the Indians offered him a great contract. He could have been gone years ago. But he stayed with the Padres, with a much lower contract. He did that because he loves San Diego, just like Tony Gwynn. He would not leave it if he could help it. Trevor did not leave San Diego willingly this offseason. He was forced to. You can’t sign with a team if they don’t want you. Merely hours before his signing with the Brewers, he contacted the Padres again, to see if there was any hope of negotiations. The Padres said no. THEY DON’T WANT HIM!!! I don’t know why. I’ve been struggling with this all offseason.

So now he’s with the Brewers. He still loves San Diego. It is my hope that he will be back here to pitch again for his team next year. But Trevor didn’t sign with the Dodgers. He could have. The Dodgers look like they are going to be very good this year. They have a chance to go deep into the postseason. Plus, they were just up the road. But he know what that would do to Padres fans. He wants to be here, but to make it easier for the San Diego fans, he signed with the Brewers. It also helped that the Brewers pursued him. Probably more than LA did.

Another letter in the Union-Tribune said: “Tim Sullivan’s column, ‘CEO Spanos makes it clear…’ was so very nice, and right on.  For the first time ever, he made me cry. Specifically, his line, ‘LT might play for some other team, but he will always belong to us,’ brought tears to my eyes. Trading LaDainian Tomlinson to another team at this stage of his career would be akin to the Padres trading Tony Gwynn to the Dodgers…” etc etc. Do you see it? You could use this letter to perfectly describe Trevor! “Trevor might play for some other team, but he will always belong to us.” “Trading Trevor Hoffman to another team at this stage of his career would be akin to the Padres trading LaDainion Tomlinson to the Raiders…” I think you get the point.

Trevor is as good of a person and a player as LT. And though the city of San Diego gets to enjoy watching LT play for at least three more years, we’re not going to have our all-time saves leader here, at least not yet. Padres GM Kevin Towers has said that he would at least like Trevor to sign with the Padres, get one save, and that would be enough. I agree. We would love to have him here longer, like a whole season, but if that’s all he’s got left in him, we will settle with one game. Just to see him again in that Padres uniform, to hear Hell’s Bells ringing through Petco Park for one last time, to see him pitch, would be incredible. I want to be at that game.

So, that’s what we true die-hard Padres fans are longing for. We want our closer back. Maybe one more game. Maybe one more season. We just want him back in San Diego. He will always belong to us. And we want him back where he belongs.

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Be sure to check out the Max Madness that’s going on over at the Max blog. My turn will be coming around sometime in the next few days, and I would really appreciate votes! I’m going up against another popular blog, so it will be a battle to see who comes out on top. But it’s all in fun, so I would love to move up, but if not, I won’t boycott MLBlogs or anything :) Thanks for the votes!

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Today the Padres are playing the Los Angeles Angels in Peoria. I have no idea who’s starting. All I know is that the game is at 1 pm and that Kyle Blanks will be playing first.

UPDATE: Corey Brock posted his entry just after I posted mine, so I now have the lineup:

CF Jody Gerut

2B David Eckstein

RF Brian Giles

3B Kevin Kouzmanoff

1B Kyle Blanks

LF Chase Headley

C Eliezer Alfonso

SS Luis Rodriguez

SP Josh Geer

Followed by pitchers Greg Burke, Scott Patterson, Ivan Nova and Mark Worrell. Geer is supposed to go five innings.  

Looks like Team Mexico got eliminated last night, so the Gonzalez boys and Scotty Hairston should be back in camp soon. That will be good. But tonight is a do-or-die game for Team USA. That will be very interesting. Team USA is dealing with a lot of injuries right now. This is pretty concerning. These guys need to be ready to play in the regular season!

Also, I’d like to welcome back Friar Fan, who started a Padres blog late last year and is now getting back into it. It’s so great to get all these Padres bloggers here! I am very excited. This blog never really got welcomed into the community, so go say hi!

Well, today is St. Patrick’s Day. I’m pretty sure I have some Irish blood somewhere from my parents, but a holiday isn’t a holiday if you don’t get work and school off. That’s what I think. And plus, I don’t like the color green. So, I’m a big St. Patrick’s Day humbug, but Happy St. Patrick’s Day anyway!

GO PADRES!!!!

(editor’s letters quotes credit to the San Diego Union-Tribune)  

Review of a BUSY Weekend

Ah, it’s so great to be back to blogging after a busy weekend! I’ve got a lot to tell you guys, so hang in there! Lots of interesting stuff happened this weekend…

PADRES GAMES

  • Saturday against the Indians: 8-6 Indians

It was a pretty good game from the Padres’ side, actually. Cha Seung Baek started, not allowing a baserunner until he gave up a bunt single in the third. He pitched four innings, giving up two runs on two hits. I think he’s getting a little better. Justin Hampson has been falling apart a bit lately. He gave up four runs on three hits. Arturo Lopez gave up two runs. But the other three pitchers did well.

The hitting highlight of this game was probably outfielder Drew Macias. He had three hits and a great defensive game as well. Cliff Floyd drove in two runs, and Luis Rodriguez had an RBI. I think we did pretty well in this game. Obviously the pitching is still struggling, but I seriously think that the hitters are ready to go. They’ve been in camp for a while, and they are ready. But there are still a lot of roster decisions to be made, so it’s good that some of these guys are getting as many ABs as possible. This half of the Padres lost 8-6. 

  • Saturday against the Giants: 8-4 Padres

We won half of this split-squad thingy! If you had asked me, I would have said that the team in Peoria would have won, but no. It was the Scottsdale team that came out on top.

Cesar Ramos started the game and threw three scoreless innings. I am very pleased that he had a good outing. He probably won’t make the team out of Spring Training, but he has struggled this spring, so it’s good to see him put up some zeros there. Walter Silva pitched two scoreless innings, which is great! Silva is on loan to the Padres from a team in Mexico, and we’re taking a look at him for as potential starter in the rotation. Thing is, he hurt his ankle and Saturday was his first outing this spring. I am very glad that he pitched well, though! Jae Kuk Ryu and Will Inman each gave up two runs. But otherwise, the pitching did pretty well!

Chase Headley and Nick Hundley each hit a two-run double in this game. Kyle Blanks hit his second homer of the spring, driving in two runs. Very cool. My boy Kevin Kouzmanoff also had two hits. Yay! We seem to hit Matt Cain pretty well. At least lately. When we faced him in a game in September, we killed him, getting like five runs in the bottom of the first. And here again, he gave up five runs to us. Interesting. And so, this half (the better half?) of the Padres won 8-4. Great game!

  • Sunday against the Rangers: 10-7 Rangers

Well. Not so great game for my Padres, or should I say, their pitching!!! Let’s see…Wade LeBlanc gave up three runs in two innings, Nick Schmidt gave up six runs without getting an out, and Josh Banks gave up a run. I don’t remember who Josh Banks is. He might have come up to the majors last year, but I’m not sure…oh wait, I remember him now. He must have been in the minor league camp so far. Anyways, Joe Thatcher threw a scoreless inning, even getting three strikeouts around two hits. He still needs to go way down to the minors.

Chad Huffman hit a homer and got three hits. Pete Ciofrone also hit a homer. Chris Snelling (more about him later) had a double and drove in three runs. Brett Dowdy had two hits.

And so, we lost. But it was a great game on the hitting side. If you don’t have good pitching, you don’t win. Jerry Coleman is brilliant.

MY BROTHER’S GAME

So, my brother played his fourth game of the season on Saturday afternoon. It was a great game! Pirates against the Marlins, and the Pirates came out on top, 7-2. First of all, the Marlins pitching was not very good. My brother got on base for the very first time in his baseball career by getting walked on four really wide pitches. So, when he’s in the majors some 12-15 years from now, he can say that he got on base for the first time by getting walked on four pitches. How neat! The reporters will be all over that. Just kidding :)

 Anyways, in the last inning (which happened to be the fifth), the Marlin’s pitching was going nuts. Strikeout, walk, walk, hit by pitch, hit by pitch, walk, walk. Yeah, pretty crazy. In fact, their pitching gave up nine walk in five innings! But now, the most exciting part (to our family): my brother got hit-by-pitch! But not just any ordinary HBP. He got it with the bases loaded! Now he can tell the reporters when he makes his major league debut that he got his first ever RBI by getting hit-by-pitch from a pitcher who was not very good! And he didn’t get hit badly. I think he got it in the shoulder/upper arm area. It was certainly a little sore the next day, but he was fine. Pretty cool! My mom and I were just sitting there laughing. It was pretty amazing!

WORLD BASEBALL CLASSIC

Now, the WBC. Mexico is very close to elimination, but with my Gonzalez boys on that team, they have a chance to get back into this thing. I think it was a really great weekend at Petco Park. Some great games were played. And Team USA is still in it for now.

JAKE PEAVY

But now I must have a little rant. About Jake Peavy. Yes, Padres ace and face of the organization is pitching with Team USA right now. He’s had two outings, and he’s given up eight runs in five innings. He’s also given up five walks. I am really worried about him. I feel like he’s pushing himself way too hard way too early. He only had two outings with the Padres before he left. He’s been put into this “playoff” atmosphere, and I know how much pride he has about playing with that USA on his chest. But I really think he is pushing himself too hard. And I’m worried that this will carry over to the season. Last time the WBC came around, Jake gave up three runs in eight innings. That was the year that he got hurt. Can you believe the blow it would be to this Padres team if Jake isn’t in top form this year?? Well, we saw it last year, when Jake was out with that elbow problem. That along with the 22-inning game killed our season. We can’t lose our ace. Not again. So, I hate to say it, but I really hope Jake can get back into camp soon. He really needs to slow it down. Come back to us, Jake!!!!!!!!!!

UM, EDGAR…??

edgar laughing.jpgI just had to share this picture. I mean, is that creepy or what? In the photo caption on MLB.com, it said that Edgar was sharing a laugh with his brother Adrian. Looks more like Edgar is yelling at his younger brother. Poor Adrian, always getting lectured by his older, shorter brother. Just kidding, the Gonzalez brothers have a great relationship. And though I have no doubt that Edgar really was laughing in this picture, I just had to poke fun at him. It is a pretty funny picture!

NEW SIGNEES

The Padres signed two players to minor league deals over the weekend: outfielder Chris Snelling and pitcher Duaner Sanchez. Now, the outfielder move is really questionable in my mind. We don’t need another outfielder! Maybe they want him for his bat. But I mean, our outfield is all locked up. We’ve got Jody Gerut in center, Brian Giles in right, and Chase Headley in left. Plus, we’ve got Scott Hairston and Will Venable, who are stellar outfielders. I don’t think we have a place for Snelling, but he sounds like a good player. As for the new pitcher, hey, we need arms that don’t give up ten runs a game. So let’s see if he can pitch!

CHECK IT OUT…

The Best Blog Out There! Get over to this blog and welcome a new die-hard Padres fan to the community. You can never have too many die-hards around here, especially Padres fans! I am very excited to read about another Padres fan’s opinions of our team!

Well, the Padres are off today. Tomorrow we will play The Angels Angels in Peoria. GO PADRES!!

(photo credit: MLB.com)   

Pounded by the Sox

  • 15-4 White Sox

Oh boy. What a nasty game! Our pitching did terrible, and I hate it when our pitching does terrible. Without good pitching, we can’t win. It’s a simple as that. And so, because we had bad pitching today, we did not win.

Chris Young started and threw three innings. He only gave up two runs, but his stuff was not the best. Mike Ekstrom gave up six runs. Mark Worrell gave up his first two runs of the spring. Greg Burke gave up four runs. And Joe Thatcher, the pitcher who canot pitch, gave up another run. Tsk tsk. He really shouldn’t get a spot in the bullpen. Scott Patterson had the only scoreless inning of all the pitchers.

Our hitters didn’t do the best. Cliff Floyd hit a solo bomb. Nick Hundley and Luis Rodriguez each drove in a run. Cedric Hunter has two hits and drove in a run.

It was very cool to listen to the game and hear about all these White Sox players that I’ve been reading about for so long on Jen’s blog. It was like, an amazing moment when I heard AJ Pierzynski’s first at-bat. I have heard SO much about him, and then suddenly he was there, on the same field as my Padres. It was pretty incredible. I predicted that he was going to kill us, and though he didn’t hit a bomb, he had two hits and drove in a run. Jen’s other favorite, Josh Fields, had three hits in three at-bats and drove in a run.

Tomorrow is a split-squad thingy. I’m guessing that all our “regulars” will stay in Peoria and play the Indians. Cha Seung Baek is starting that one. The other game will be against the Giants in Scottsdale. Cesar Ramos will start that one. It will be very interesting…wouldn’t it be cool if we won both games? :) 

I watched the last half hour or so of Star Wars Episode II last night. You know, those movies are incredible! The first three are not the best, but they are still amazing. I absolutely love the Attack of the Clones, mostly because of the love story part of it, but it’s so cheesy! (“I’ve been dying a little bit every day since you cam back into my life.” “I thought we decided not to fall in love. That it would destroy us.” “It looks like we’re about to be destroyed anyway.”) I really noticed that last night. But I love it! The third one was really good, I loved it, but it was so sad. Yeah, I’m feeling kind of random tonight :)

star_wars_episode_two_attack_of_the_clones_ver1.jpgAs I’ve mentioned, some friends of mine got to go to the Spring Training game last week. I would like to share a few of the pictures they took. A lot of them are really excellent. They had great seats, so these are nice and close. Enjoy!

Padres 021.jpgKOOOOOOOOOOOZ!!!!

Padres 039.jpgKOOOOOZ again!!

Padres 048.jpgCliff Floyd getting hit-by-pitch. You can see the ball above the umpire’s head.

Padres 052.jpgCla Meredith pitching the day before his little girl was born!

Well, I hope everyone has a great weekend! GO PADRES!!

UPDATE: Here’s the lineups for today’s games:

Game against the Indians in Peoria

  • CF Drew Macias
  • 2B David Eckstein
  • RF Brian Giles
  • DH Cliff Floyd
  • LF Emil Brown
  • C Eliezer Alfonso
  • 1B Chad Huffman
  • SS Luis Rodriguez
  • 3B Travis Denker

Cha Seung Baek starting, followed by Arturo Lopez, Joe Thatcher, Cla Meredith, Justin Hampson, Chris Britton.

Game against the Giants in Scottsdale

  • CF Jody Gerut
  • 2B Chris Burke
  • 3B Kevin Kouzmanoff
  • 1B Kyle Blanks
  • LF Chase Headley
  • RF Will Venable
  • C Nick Hundley
  • SS Everth Cabrera
  • SP Cesar Ramos

Jae Kuk Ryu, Ivan Nova, Will Inman, and Walter Silva will also pitch.

Manager Bud Black will be with the Scottsdale team. GO PADRES!!! 

(photo credits: Star Wars: impawards.com. Spring Training: big thanks and credits to Ski, Pipski, and the Ninja!)

Not a Win, Not a Loss

  • 10-10 tie

What an interesting game. As you can see, our pitchers gave up ten runs, so I’m not too happy about that. But starter Josh Geer had a great game. Three innings of no-hit shut-out ball. I’m very happy for him. His last outing didn’t go that great, when he allowed like two home runs and four runs in a couple innings. It’s nice to see him bounce back and have a great outing after a really bad one. Right now, I’d say that Josh Geer and Kevin Correia essentially have those last two spots in the rotation locked up. They are doing really well, and they can pitch. But we’ll see.

Cla Meredith had a clean inning, striking out two. Cesar Carrillo gave up six runs. Chris Britton gave up two runs, as did Matt Buschmann. Edwin Moreno threw a scoreless tenth. So, the pitching wasn’t the best, but it could have been better. I am really pleased about Geer and Meredith, though. They are looking great this spring!

On the offensive side, we did very well. Emil Brown had a two-run double in the top of the first. Kyle Blanks, that big boy, slammed a three-run homer in the fifth. My boy Kevin Kouzmanoff hit a two-run homer! I’m so proud of him. Chase Headley and David Eckstein each had two hits. Eckstein has really been playing well this spring, both with his offense and his defense. We got three more runs in the seventh to tie the game at ten. We played ten innings, but neither team could score. And so, since it’s Spring Training and all, the game ended there.

Trevor did not play. Man, he’s gotta face us sometime! Of course, he’s pitching today and not yesterday. I think this is one of the stages of heartbreak. First is denial, then bitterness/hate at the person who “broke up” with you. I think I am going through the bitterness stage. WHY did you have to leave us Trevor?!?!?!!?!??!???!?!?

OK, I’m good. Anyway, it was a great game for us, I am really pleased with the offense right now. They are doing great, getting their hits, driving in runs. Just what we want them to do!

Thumbnail image for cla ut.jpgCongrats to Cla and Natalie Meredith! Natalie gave birth to their first child on Sunday, a girl named Adellyn Sue. Cla got to spend Tuesday, which was a off day, with his wife and his new baby girl. Then, though very tired, he went out yesterday and threw a perfect inning! Again, congrats to the Merediths, and I hope Cla and his wife can get some rest soon!

Today we are playing the White Sox for the first time this spring. Chris Young will be starting. He last pitched on Sunday and gave up two runs. Mike Ekstrom, Greg Burke (who really needs to start his blog), Scott Patterson, and Mark Worrell will also pitch. It will be very interesting to hear about all of Jen’s favorite players.  LINEUP!!!

  • SS Chris Burke 
  • 3B Luis Rodriguez
  • RF Brian Giles 
  • 1B Kyle Blanks
  • CF Jody Gerut
  • LF Drew Macias
  • C Nick Hundley
  • 2B Matt Antonelli
  • SP Chris Young

Hm, interesting lineup today. We’ll see how it goes! GO PADRES!!!

(photo credit: Union Tribune) 

#21

Thank you so much to all my readers for getting me to #21 on the Latest Leaders list this week! I moved up ten spaces, so I am very excited. This week, in the tradition started by Jimmy, I dedicate my ranking to #21, the Padres’ new closer, Heath Justin Bell.

heath throwing.jpg

Heath was born in and grew up in California. He signed with the New York Mets in 1998 as an undrafted free agent. He was in the Mets’ minor league system for eight seasons. He actually made his major league debut against the Padres, throwing two scoreless innings with three strikeouts. He went the next two seasons going back and forth between Triple-A and the major league club.

In 2006, he was finally traded to the San Diego Padres with Royce Ring for Ben Johnson and Jon Adkins. He never really got a chance with the Mets, so it was great that he got traded to the Padres. Once he was there, he got the 8th inning role as set-up man to Trevor Hoffman. In 2007, he pitched in 81 games and had 102 strikeouts. In 2008 he pitched in 74 games and had 71 strikeouts. He’s pitched a lot for the Padres!

Now he is taking the place of Trevor Hoffman in the closer’s role. Heath only has two major league saves, but he saved 108 games in the minors. He’s been in that closer’s role before, but closing the the minors is a lot different that closing in the majors. He knows that. 

Heath is quite the character. He has said that he doesn’t like to talk to guys on the other team because he wants them to think that he’s slightly crazy. He’s like a kid, you know. But he’s very serious about his work, and working out and stuff. Over the offseason he lost 25 pounds by playing Wii Fit. He’s just really funny, in his quotes and his interviews. It will be very interesting to see how he handles the role of a closer, dealing with the failures and the press. He’s an intense guy, and he’s going to bring that out to the mound. Though I miss Trevor a lot, I can’t wait to see how Heath does this year. It will be a learning experience, but I think he will do very well. 

year in review heath knievel.jpg
Thank you again, so much, to all my readers. I’ve said this before, but it’s so true: without you guys, there is no purpose to this blog. So, thank you so much for reading and getting me to #21. It really means a lot to me. You guys are amazing! Thanks!

GO PADRES!!

(photo credits: cache.daylife.com, padres.com)

Padres Win Against Team Korea

  • 10-4 Padres

What a game! Last night, the Padres played Team Korea in an exhibition game. The Padres played a great game.

Kevin Correia started, throwing four innings and giving up one hit and one walk. It’s looking even more likely that this guy will get the fourth spot in our rotation, and I think he’s doing great. I mean, four innings and one hit. That’s pretty good, my friends. Pretty great! Wade LeBlanc took the mound next and went three scoreless innings, giving up two hits. LeBlanc has been struggling a bit this spring, so it’s great to see him have some solid innings there. Ivan Nova got hit the hardest, giving up four runs on five hits. But Scott Patterson had a scoreless hitless inning to end the game. I am so glad that our pitching is getting back to form!

On the hitting side, we did very well. We had 14 hits and 10 runs! Brian Giles had three hits in three ABs and drove in two runs. Giles is old, and he’s had a lot of injury problems, but boy can he hit! If he can stay healthy and out of jail, he will be really good for us this year. Chase Headley had two two-run doubles. Yay! Kyle Blanks had a RBI. Cliff Floyd and Jody Gerut each had two hits. Nick Hundley threw out a potential basestealer!

Definitely a great game for my Padres. The pitching was great, and we hit very well. It was a feel-good game.

Today we are playing the Brewers. I bet Trevor’s going to pitch. I mean, he’s gotta face us sometime. I really hope I don’t miss it, though. So, we’ll see how that’s going to go. He probably won’t pitch. I don’t know. All that matters is that we win the game! Hopefully I will get to listen to a lot of this game.

  • CF Drew Macias
  • 2B David Eckstein
  • 3B Kevin Kouzmanoff
  • RF Emil Brown
  • 1B Kyle Blanks
  • LF Will Venable
  • C Eliezer Alfonso
  • SS Everth Cabrera
  • SP Josh Geer

Geer is going four innings, then Cla Meredith, Chris Britton, Chad Reineke, Matt Buschmann, Cesar Carrillo.

GO PADRES!! 

First Win of the Season!

  • 10-4 Pirates

No, the major league Padres were not playing the major league Pirates yesterday. Rather, my brother’s team, the Pirates, were playing the Rockies, and the Pirates came out on top with their first win of the season!

The Pirates had a great game, starting it off with two runs in the bottom of the first. They added one in the second, two in the fourth, and five in the fifth. One of our kids got an inside- the-park home run. It’s so funny to watch these 9- and 10-year-olds play baseball! The fifth was definitely our best inning. We went walk, strikeout, walk, single, triple, triple, and single. It was great. I really enjoyed watching the game, and watching them beat the Rockies, too! I think our three pitchers only allowed one or two hits, though we walked a lot of guys.

I have really enjoyed watching this baseball so far. It’s just a lot of fun! So, I scored the game with my scorebook last night. It was really hard! I made a few glaring mistakes, like thinking that a guy had been struck out when he was still batting…there was a balk, so things got a little confusing. It was seriously hard, but I want to do it again. I know I’m not going to be perfect, but I think I can do better. It didn’t help that my pencil ran out of lead, and that I discovered that I have absolutely no writing implements in my purse. I will have to work on that. Thankfully, my dad had a pencil on him, so I was able to finish off the game. I am so glad that I’m not the official scorer! But I really enjoy keeping score, and I hope to improve as the season goes on.

But oh boy, it was so cold out there! I had my Padres blanket, as well as my super fuzzy blanket, but I was so intent on scoring that I didn’t actually put them on. My hand was so numb!! I could barely write! But I made it. Wow, it was just really cold. Really really really cold. I’m sure it wasn’t as bad as what some of you guys are in right now, but this is San Diego! We aren’t used to cold like this!

One of the really interesting parts of this league is that all the umpires are teenage guys! I’ve really enjoyed watching the three different umpires and the way they call the games. There’s the home plate umpire, and then a umpire who patrols the bases. Strikes are usually pretty low. It makes sense, since most of these kids are pretty short, but I personally feel like the strike should be a little higher. But that’s the way they do it, so I guess we’ll have to deal with it. We’ll probably get an umpire later in the season who has a high strike, but we’ll see. The pitchers are all pretty good, though. It’s impressive.

Another exciting part of the game? My brother hit a foul ball! He’s not really the most baseball-gifted kid on the field, and he hasn’t been doing that great. He had a little foul ball in the last game, but this time he hit a solid foul ball down the first base line. I’m really hoping that he gets a good hit soon. Poor guy :(  

I miss my Padres. I wasn’t really listening to the game on Sunday because I was busy with other things. Then I completely missed the big blowout on Monday. There wasn’t a game yesterday, and I’m going to miss the game tonight against Korea. Oh well.

Tonight is the Padres’ exhibition game against Team Korea. Kevin Correia is starting, and hopefully he will be able to have a good outing. I really wish I could listen to this game, but I will be otherwise occupied.

Have a great day, everyone!

GO PADRES!!   

A Blowout? Oh yeah!

  • 16-3 Padres

 
giants_padres_baseball_1_400.jpg                                                                                                    

On Friday and Saturday, the Padres got pretty beat up. The pitching gave up 28 runs in those two games, plus four more on Sunday. It was really rough to watch my team get killed, but it was so bad that it was almost funny. Though it was humorous that my team was losing like 13-11 or 15-6, it’s always so much more fun when you’re the team on top. And yesterday, that’s what my Padres were. After a week of losses, they finally pulled off a win by beating up their NL West rivals, the Arizona Diamondbacks.

The pitching was very much improved from the weekend. Cha Seung Baek himself was very improved! He went three innings, allowing only one run on one hit. He walked one and struck out two. I mean, compared to how he’s been doing, this is definitely his best outing of the spring. Even in the very few innings I was able to listen to, just hearing the way the guys described his pitching, I could tell that his stuff was working much better. The guys really noticed it, and there was one pitch that Ted Leitner said was the best fastball that he’s ever seen Cha Seung throw. So, I’m pleased that he’s (hopefully) getting it together.

The rest of the pitching was pretty good. Jae Kuk Ryu had a bases loaded situation, but he induced a grounder to third for an around-the-horn double play to get out of the inning. That was great. Greg Burke, who is going to start a Padres prospect blog around here sometime, pitched a spotless inning, as in, no hits and no runs. Joe Thatcher…yeah, him again. Miraculously, he was able to pitch a scoreless inning. I have no idea how he did it, and though he allowed one hit, he had two strikeouts. He still needs to go to Single-Single-A, though. Justin Hampson, who has been one of the more solid guys this spring, allowed two runs on three hits in the seventh. I think he has a big chance to make the Opening Day roster in the bullpen. Arturo Lopez and Edwin Moreno each had scoreless innings. I am very pleased that the pitching has improved. At least it’s not every other guy giving up four runs. I am very pleased.

On the offensive side, we did fantastic. Probably the best we’ve done all spring. We had 16 hits, and though we left seven runners on base, we scored 16 runs. 16!!! Eliezer Alfonso, a catcher who will be starting the season at Triple-A, hit a three-run homer for us in the top of the second inning off of Jon Garland. Alfonso later hit an RBI double. My boy Koooooz had THREE doubles in four at-bats! Yeah, I think he’s ready to play. One of those doubles drove in a run. I am so proud of him!! Anyway, Brett Dowdy. I hate to admit it, but I have no idea who this guy is. Before this spring, I had never heard of him. I am pretty sure that he’s with Portland, or was last year. I think he was one of the guys brought into big league camp when the guys left for the WBC. So, wherever he came from, he had a good game yesterday. Double down the left field line, clearing the bases and driving in three runs. Not bad. Brian Giles, Will Venable, Drew Macias, Matt Antonelli, and Cedric Hunter each drove in a run. Brett Dowdy drove in four. Kyle Blanks drove in two. Drew Macias got a solo homer in the top of the 9th. I really like how we score runs all through the game. Three in the second, four in the third, four in the fifth, one in the sixth, and then four in the ninth. I think that was great!

I must admit, I have not been following the WBC like I should be. But I did noticed that the Padres’ big boy Adrian Gonzalez drove in six runs for Team Mexico in their win against South Africa yesterday. I’m telling you, Adrian is an incredible hitter. I know you know that, but it’s so true. That guy is incredible. I can’t wait for him to get back to the Padres and use that big bat to win some games for us!

Thank you so much to Sue of Rants, Raves, and Random Thoughts, who did some research and revealed the mystery of the unknown autographs. Our mysterious Scribblers are Matt Antonelli, Drew Macias, and Cedric Hunter. I am impressed. Those are not just your average minor leaguers. These guys are regarded pretty highly by the Padres organization. Very cool.

Today is an off-day for my Padres. It seems so strange to have another off-day, because it seems like we just had one! But tomorrow we are playing Team Korea. That’s going to be really interesting.

Have a great day, everyone, and GO PADRES!!

(photo credit: pe.com)

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