August 2010

To My Dear First-Place Padres…

Dear Padres,

Well, I have to commend you. For almost five months, you did not lose any more than three games in a row. That is absolutely amazing to me because I remember the days of a year ago when 3-plus losing streaks were the norm. It wasn’t anything new at all, and that was sooo not cool.

But this year, you’ve really turned things around. I am just so proud to say that my team just had it’s first four-game losing streak of the year. I’m allowed to be proud about that because it hadn’t happened yet, and here the season is almost over!

But man, I really have to commend you guys not just for this losing streak thing, but for the whole season. We would not be celebrating this losing streak if you hadn’t been winning all season. You will never know how much this season has meant to me. For almost my whole Padres fan career, I’ve had to take a lot of flak about my last-place team. Everybody ALWAYS said that we would be at the bottom of the NL West, that we would have just another losing season. But it’s so great to be on top now.

When we were in those losing seasons, I knew that someday, I would be able to say that my team is #1. I knew that if I only endured through the hard seasons, we would eventually get better. I said that within five years, I believed that we would be competitive. You got going a lot faster than I thought you would because here you are, on top of the NL West, only about a year since I said that. Well done, boys. Well done.

Thank you guys so much for the amazing season we’ve had so far and the fun times we’re still going to have. I have enjoyed this season soooo much and I can’t wait to see where we’re going to go. You are an incredible group of guys and I love watching you work together, win together, and in the few times you do, lose together. I’ve never seen a San Diego team quite like this. For you guys, it’s not about the numbers or the performance of any one player. You really understand that you win and lose as a team. I love that about you guys.

Thank you for giving the fans something to come out and enjoy. Thank you for making us a part of this. I don’t know about the rest of you, but I absolutely can’t wait to be cheering for the boys in the playoffs. This has been an incredible season, and I don’t want it to end. Hopefully it won’t end…until we win the World Series.

But until then, keep doing what you’re doing, guys. Keep that one-game-at-a-time mentality. Keep battling till the very end. Keep working together as a team and giving the fans the chance to watch an amazing first-place team. Keep on winning games so we can keep that lead up and win this division.

I love you guys soooo much. ♥♥♥♥♥

GO FIRST-PLACE PADRES!!  

Believe in SD!!

It was a classic pitching matchup: the veteran, Roy Oswalt, against the kid, Mat Latos.

We all knew it was going to be a huge game because this series has been hyper up to be one of the most important of the year. The Phillies came into San Diego having lost six out of their last eight. The Padres are on the top of the NL West and are definitely making a run for the playoffs. This series could be a preview of the first round of the postseason. And let me tell you, last night’s game was sooo intense, there’s no doubt that it was a preview for those playoffs.

Even though I was hyped about this series, I took the same route that the Padres themselves take: One game at a time, one series at a time. Of course we want to focus on winning the whole series, but we’re only going to get there by winning one game at a time.

Unfortunately, we didn’t do that last night. But it was still an amazing game to watch. I went to the game with my church, which was super fun. It was sooo cool to be there at the game. Right after the Phillies finished batting practice, I heard this huge roar of cheering. I thought, I really really hope that’s just a recorded cheer playing on the commercial on the scoreboard. But no. To my horror, it was the huge amount of Phillies fans in the stands. I thought, “Oh boy. We’re going to have our work cut out for us tonight.”

And we really did. It almost felt like a Dodgers/Padres games because for every play, there was cheering. When the Phillies did something good, there was a large amount of cheering. When the Padres did something good, there was a huge amount of cheering. It was so frustrating to have to battle the Phillies fans the whole time, but it also was a ton of fun.  

Oswalt and Latos were great. Their linescores were actually almost identical. Oswalt went eight innings while Latos only went seven, but each gave up five hits, one run, and struck out six.


IMG_6053.JPGThe umpires bugged me a lot last night. It was pretty sad, but it seemed like they made a lot of calls in the Phillies’ favor. In the bottom of the second, we got caught stealing twice, but I’d say that they were pretty close calls. Man it was frustrating.

Latos allowed the Phillies’ first run in the top of the third. In the bottom of the third, Yorvit Torrealba led off the inning with a solo homer, which was so sweet. It was great to come right back and get that thing tied up.

Not much happened until the eighth inning. Mike Adams came in to take Latos’ place, and he did not do well. It was sooo sad!! After getting one out, he allowed a walk, single, and another walk to load the bases. Joe Thatcher came in to get the left handed, but he didn’t do his job either. He allowed a single which allowed the go-ahead run to score. It was sooo bad.

IMG_6117.JPGBut in the bottom of the ninth, I knew these boys were not going to give up. Matt Stairs started off the inning, and I thought, you’d better get a hit here. He really has not been that great this year, so it was amazing when he hit a single to start off the inning. Jerry Hairston pinched-ran for him. Eck hit a sac-bunt, and he almost almost got safely to first base because Brad Lidge fumbled the ball. Unfortunately, he recovered quickly, and Eck was out. But at least he got Jerry over to second. Miguel Tejada grounded out, which really stunk.

Then the craziness started. Adrian Gonzalez was intentionally walked. With a count of 0-2, Ryan Ludwick was hit-by-pitch to load the bases. He was hit pretty hard too. Thankfully, he was okay and the game went on.

IMG_6139.JPGChase came up next. Suddenly, I saw Jerry Hairston jumping up and down at third and pointing to the pitcher. Brad Lidge had balked!!!! Oh my goodness, it was the best moment of the whole game. It was sooooooooo exciting!! We tied the game and still had runners at second and third. Unfortunately, Chase grounded out to end the inning, but at least we kept the game going.   

Heath Bell came into the game in the top of the 10th. Of course, he just had to allow a walk, but he got out of the inning unscathed.

In the bottom of the inning, we went down 1-2-3. In the top of the 11th, Heath put them down in order. We got a single in the bottom of that inning, but no avail.

Then the trouble started in the top of the 12th. Ernesto Freri came in to pitch, and I was excited because he’s done fairly well this season. But no. Last night he did not do well at all. He allowed a double to start off the inning, and there’s obviously a lot of things wrong with that. It’s a tie game, extra innings, no outs. Very bad situation. Then he allowed a single to center. Luis Durango made a very, very good throw to the plate, but Jimmy Rollins expertly slid in and Yorvit Torrealba missed the tag. It was sooooooooo sad!!!! I was seriously angry at the umpire, but looking at the replay today shows that he made the right call. Still. It was really, really bad.

We got out of that inning without any further damage. In the bottom of the 12th, after two outs, I knew that we weren’t going to win that game. But I refused to believe it. All through Will Venable’s eight-pitch at-bat, I cheered my heart out. I refused to let myself, as a fan, go down quietly. I cheered them through, but Will struck out to end the game. I was pretty frustrated, no doubt about it. But it was just one game, and I’m sure we will go out there and get them today.

It was a blast watching this game. I’m now 2-2 on the year though, so I think I’ll have to get out there again to make it a winning record.

GO FIRST-PLACE PADRES!!! 

I ♥ MY PADRES!!!

Wow, it’s been quite a while since I blogged! Sorry about that guys, but I was out of town all week and didn’t get a chance to blog.

Anyways, what a team. What a season. I just love these boys like crazy. That sweep of the Cubs was amazing!! I had the chance to listen to the Cubs broadcast for a couple of those games, and I thoroughly enjoyed it. Those guys were totally amazed by the Padres. They said stuff like, “They just do everything right. They’re getting all the breaks. There’s nothing that they can’t do.” It was soooooooo much fun to hear these guys just totally flabbergasted and hopeless because of what my Padres were doing to their Cubs. It excites me so much that at least someone’s noticing how good these Padres are.

I’m also very very happy about the standings. After that series we won against them, they kind of let the guard down a bit and we were able to take a 6-game lead. It’s now down to 5.5, but still. That’s an absolutely great lead. We’re definitely going to keep it up.

You know how to show just how good my Padres are? Four of the five teams in the NL West have records over .500. But they’re 12, 10.5, and 5.5 games behind the first-place Padres. 

I am just SOO excited!!! We’re getting sooo close. We’re playing great baseball. We didn’t do that great against the Brewers, but we did avoid the sweep once again. Now we’re home against the Diamondbacks, and then I get to go to the game on Friday against the Phillies. It’s going to be so sweet.

Also, DAVID ECKSTEIN IS BACK!!!!!! I’m sooo happy!!!! He just adds sooo much. He is very needed here. Thank you for getting better Eck!!

So that means Everth Cabrera is out, Luis Durango is in. I kind of feel bad for Everth, but he really does need the break. He’ll go down there, get better, and be able to contribute more up here.

Clayton Richard tonight. Let’s do this.  

GO FIRST-PLACE PADRES!!! 

Take That!

Last night’s game was sooo amazing!! Super intense, but thanks to our pitching, we were able to win the game 3-2.

First of all, I love love love that we made Jonathan Sanchez eat his words. He was okay, but left the game in the sixth with three runs given up. Eat up, buddy.

This game was really crazy because we got caught in quite a few rundowns, we played the game under protest, and there were some extremely intense and scary plays. Heart-attack types. But through the whole thing, it was pitching, pitching, pitching.

We got that 3-2 in the sixth, so for the next 3 1/2 innings, we had to hold that lead. It was soo intense. I had complete confidence in the bullpen, but there’s always that risk factor. We were only leading by one run. One swing of the bat, and that could be gone. So it was tense. But the combination of Gregerson, Adams, and Bell took care of it.

Crazy, crazy game, but I am just soooo happy that we won!! It feels so good to see that 3.5 game lead and to know that no matter what happens in the next two games, we will leave San Francisco with our first-place lead. Man I love these boys!

Right now we’re playing the second game of the series. We’re leading 1-0 in the top of the third and Mat Latos is looking great. I have a feeling that this one’s going to be a good one.

Talk about execution. Miguel Tejada just took the first pitch he saw and doubled. Then Adrian took the first pitch he saw and flew out, but that moved Miggy to third. Oh. And then Ryan Ludwick took the first pitch he saw and got Miggy doubled up. Oh well.

Anyways, I’m really really really missing Kouz today. I woke up this morning really missing him. I wish I could sit down and talk to him sometime. He means so much to me and I miss him like crazy!! Sigh. Love you Kouz.

Well, hopefully we can get this game to get the series.

GO FIRST-PLACE PADRES!! 

Padres Sweep!

SWEEP!!! WE SWEPT THE PIRATES!!!

Okay, so it wasn’t that surprising, but it was a lot of fun to get all three games. Especially right before this Giants series, but more on that later.

I got to attend the game yesterday, which was a blast. That was my third game of the year. It was Throwback Thursday, which meant that both the Padres and the Pirates wore their 1978 uniforms. There was a lot of yellow, brown, and stripes. The Padres’ uniforms aren’t my favorite, but the Pirates’ cracked me up. We decided that they looked like a cross between train conductors and prisoners.

The game itself went really well. Jon Garland started, and he was very good. He didn’t allow a hit through the first few innings, but he did allow a few walks and a hit batter early. I looked at the scoreboard and thought, okay, Jon hadn’t given up a hit yet, but he already had gotten himself into some potentially dangerous situations!!

IMG_5479.JPGHe ended up going six innings, only allowing one hit with four walks and five strikeouts. Amazing performance.

We didn’t score until the bottom of the third. Jon Garland led off the inning with a single. Jerry Hairston sac-bunted him over the second. Then Miguel Tejada doubled him in.

Really, that was all the offense we needed. But in the sixth, Ryan Ludwick gave us a little more.

It was really interesting because Adrian started off the inning with a seemingly routine groundout to short. He hit it, the shortstop picked it up and threw as Adrian slugged down the line. As the ball hit the first baseman’s glove, Adrian was definitely out…but then the ball bounced out of the first baseman’s glove! It was totally unexpected! They gave the error to the shortstop though instead of the first baseman, which I thought was interesting.

Crucial error for the Pirates, though. After taking two balls, Ryan Ludwick hit a two-run homer out into the Padres bullpen! It was soo sweet!!

IMG_5581.JPGThe relief pitching was amazing!! Luke Gregerson came in after Garland left and got two batters on six pitches. Then he allowed a single, but Joe Thacher came in to get the lefty. Two pitches and his job was done. I’m sooo happy that Thatcher has really turned into such a solid pitcher. I remember the really bad days in 2008 when he literally couldn’t pitch. It’s so nice to know that he’s much, much better than that pitcher he was.

Then Heath Bell came into the game in the top of the ninth. But it was super lame because they didn’t even do his big entrance. No “300” clips. No “Blow Me Away.” Just some random song from the ’70s. It was pathetic!!

But thankfully he was on his game. It took him four batters, but he got his 34th save of the year. And we won 3-0!! :)

IMG_5271.JPGSo these Throwback Thursdays are new this year and I have to say that I was not very impressed. I’d say that it hindered my ballpark experience more than added to it. First of all, I think it’s cool that they had the old jerseys and the organ player, but I wish they hadn’t cut out almost everything else. For example, all they played was this awful ’70s music when the organ wasn’t playing. They didn’t play any of the player’s walk-up music, and like I said, they totally cut out Heath’s entrance.

I mean, what if Trevor Hoffman had still been here and there was this person who could only come to this game and had never ever seen Trevor Time and was super excited going into the top of the ninth because they were going to see Trevor Time? You can’t just cut out Trevor Time.

Second of all, the in-game host wasn’t even there the entire time, which meant that the entertainment between innings was pathetic! Well, I guess it wasn’t just his fault. They did have all the typical stuff like dot races and guess the attendance and best seat in the house and hat shuffle, but it was a lot more boring.

The organ player was great. I’m not saying anything against his talent or ability. Maybe it was just me, but I really missed all the music that they usually have. Again, I love hearing “Blow Me Away” when Heath comes in. I love hearing the player’s walk-up music. I don’t like hearing all this nasty ’70s stuff.

Now, personally, I don’t like oldies stuff, so maybe that’s why I didn’t enjoy the whole retro thing as much. Like I said, it’s cool to have the jerseys for a retro day, but I don’t see why they have to cut out everything else.

The thing that bugged me the most was that I barely got hyped up at all. There were zero scoreboard prompts to get loud. There were barely any clapping thingys. Even with the minimal excitment on the field, I should have been screaming and getting hyper a lot more than I did. When I go to the ballpark, I go watch my boys and get excited! I love screaming and clapping for my boys. I love getting excited. But the only times I got more-than-normally-excited was the home run and when Heath closed the game.

Here’s how bad it was: when Heath got two outs, they didn’t even put up the “ON YOUR FEET” sign!!!!! How wrong is that?!?!?!?!? Man it bugged me sooo much.

So if I had to make a suggestion on how to make Throwback Thursdays better, I would say that there needs to be more interaction. I was extremely mellow the whole game, and you do not want that. You want your fans to be totally alert and into the game. Give us more scoreboard promts. If they have to be, they can be retro promts, but just get us into the game more.  

Needless to say, I’m really, really looking forward to the next game I’m going to do, which will hopefully be normal. A Friday night game against the Phillies.

But we’ve got three big games this weekend against the Giants. I’m really thankful that the players themselves are seeing this like any other series, but that doesn’t mean that the fans can’t hype it up. I don’t think it’s going to be season-determining, but I think it would be great to gain a few games on the Giants.

I know that the boys will play their hardest and hopefully will get the better part of the series. After all, we have beaten the Giants seven out of eight times this season. I like our chances.

GO FIRST-PLACE PADRES!!

P.S. You know what I think is really funny? All the headlines today are about how great our new additions are (Miggy and Luddy), and though they both contributed in a big way, they also each grounded into an inning-killing double play. Nice.

That’s More Like It!

You know those series last week when we didn’t do too well? I think those are behind us. Ryan Ludwick has finally found his bat.

Last week was a little scary because our two big additions, Ludwick and Miguel Tejada, were seemingly hindering instead of helping. We lost four games last week, which we just don’t do. So you can understand my worry, but thankfully, things are looking up again.

Wade LeBlanc threw an absolutely amazing game last night. He only went 5.2 innings, but he only allowed five hits, one run, while striking out eight. Whoo hoo! The one thing that I find absolutely incredible is his hitting this year! He had another hit and RBI last night, which brings his average up to .324. He has 12 hits on the year.

Ludwick was the star of this game, though. He hit his first Padre home run in the bottom of the second, which gave us a 1-0 lead. LeBlanc singled in our second run later in the inning.

Then, in the bottom of the seventh, Ryan hit his second home run in the bottom of the seventh. I’m sooo happy that he’s getting his bat going. We need this guy to contribute if we want to keep our first place lead and keep pushing towards the playoffs.

The bullpen was great once again. The combination of Luke Gregerson, Mike Adams, and Heath Bell is back and strong as ever. Heath got his 32nd save of the year.

Great, great game. You have no idea how relieved I was to get the win last night. It’s always a good thing to start off a series with a win, especially at home.

The best news of all is that we have a little more breathing room on our first-place lead…for now. The Giants are now 2.5 games behind, which is a lot better than the 1 that they were last week.

By the way, I didn’t really want to get into this, but what Jonathan Sanchez said the other day REALLY ticked me off. I’m mostly trying to not let it go to my head, because that’s what he wants us to do. But this series against the Giants is going to be huge. We’re going into their park for three games. But look at is this way: the Giants have been trailing us for a long time. They’ve come within one game of tying us for first place, but they’ve never been able to quite make it. It’s going to be a very tough series, but I think the Padres are going to come out on top.

Also, I think that’s really bad sportsmanship of Sanchez. I mean, he had just lost a game, and I can’t blame him for being angry about it. But you don’t go boasting about the next team you’re going to beat. Not cool. Not cool at all.   

The Latest Leaders list for July just came out, and I’m #10!! This is really exciting for me :) Thank you guys sooo much for reading consistently and supporting my blog. It means so much to me! Thank you thank you thank you!! 

Hopefully we can get the win tonight and then another one tomorrow when I’m at the game. I’m super excited!!!! It’s going to be soo much fun.

Kevin Correia vs. James McDonald tonight. Let’s do this.

It’s time to believe. 

GO FIRST-PLACE PADRES!! 

Still On Top

This team can just never be put down. Can you believe that we’ve never lost more than three games in a row all season? Absolutely incredible. But there’s been plenty of times that we’ve lost two and faced a third. But every single time, we were able to turn on the bats and avoid that third loss. Just like we did yesterday.

We had lost the first two games to the Diamondbacks, which really stunk. But yesterday we had Mat Latos on the mound. I feel like Mat’s become just like Jake Peavy. Remember when we were really bad and would go on looooong losing streaks? We always called Jake our stopper. He was always the guy who wanted to go out there and stop a losing streak. Mat Latos has morphed into that role a lot this season.

Yesterday he threw six scoreless innings, only allowing two hits.

The offense really, really came out. I was so happy! Jerry Hairston had three hits, including a home run, and scored four runs. Chris Denorfia had two hits, including a home run, and scored three runs. Adrian Gonzalez had himself a big weekend, getting three hits on Saturday and two hits yesterday. Everth Cabrera had three hits too, which was absolutely huge. He’s been struggling a lot and for him to have a big day like that was a great sign.

We won the game 10-1. It was great!

Now we come home to play the Pirates for three games starting tomorrow. I think this series is going to be huge for us. We absolutely have to take at least two out of three. Though we’ve had a bad week, we remarkably still have a two-game lead over the Giants. We came pretty close to losing last week and I don’t want that to happen again. We have to keep winning to keep our lead.

I’m going to the game on Thursday, which I’m REALLY excited about!! It’s going to be great and I’m really hoping for a win :)

GO FIRST-PLACE PADRES!! 

WHAT IS WRONG WITH MY PADRES?!?!?!?!?!!!!!

AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!! Something is seriously wrong here and I don’t like it! Okay, just to lost two games in a row to the Dodgers in of itself is not that bad of a thing. BUT it is when you only score ONE run in both of those games!!

And last night’s game was the stupidist thing I’ve seen all season. We scored no runs, were two-hit, but we allowed nine runs to the Dodgers!! NINE!!!!!!! How on earth did that happen?

I haven’t been able to look at the boxscores closely to see if there’s more than meets the eye here, and if my boys have an excuse, great. But they are seriously freaking me out here!! Those trades last week were supposed to boost our offense, not completely shut it down!!!

This scares me so bad because this is not my team. The San Diego Padres of 2010 do not score one or zero runs and lose two games in a row to the Dodgers. That’s just not how we roll. I don’t know what went wrong, and I may be overreacting, but when stuff like this happens, you’ve gotta throw up those warning signs and say, whoa, what happened here??

Okay, we’ve got game 4 tonight. Kevin Correia on the mound. We will win tonight and even up the series, which is not at all a bad way to leave. That’s the best you can hope for in a four-game series. Then we’ll go out to Arizona and take care of business there. We’ll be okay. We will.

The one bright spot coming out of last night’s game is that we still have our first-place lead. Thank you Lord.

Alright, boys, let’s get back on track. You are the First-Place Padres. You can do this. Keeping the faith…

GO FIRST-PLACE PADRES!!!

For Real

Wow, I’ve been so busy that I haven’t had time to blog in a while! Just before the trading deadline, the Padres made a great move to get outfielder Ryan Ludwick. I’m really excited about both of our additions to the club. We’re already so good that anything more just makes us even better. It’s going to be great to have both of these guys on the team.

Already, they’ve contributed. In last night’s game against the Dodgers, both of them had two hits.

But one thing I’m really concerned about is the starting pitching. For most of the season, they’ve been exceptionally solid. But Clayton Richard is really worrying me. Last night he allowed ten hits in 5.1 innings. Plus, he gave up four runs. He seemed to be really struggling right from the get-go. It was not pretty.

Thankfully, our offense was really on top of things. We scored five runs in the top of the fourth, including a three-run homer from Will Venable. Those are the best. Miguel Tejada also hit a two-run single.

In the top of the sixth, Chase Headley hit a three-run homer also. That guy was seriously on fire last night. He went 4-for-5, driving in three runs and scoring three runs. It’s good to see him getting hot.

Yorvit Torrealba also had a great night, getting three hits and driving in a run.

The bullpen was great as well. Ryan Webb allowed three hits, but got out of his inning without allowing any runs. Edward Mujica gave up a run, but that’s okay. Then Ernesto Frieri went yet another scoreless hitless inning. He’s soo good!

So we won 10-5. It was such a great game! Especially against the Dodgers and with the Giants idle, it was great to get that win.

We still have our first-place lead, two games over the Dodgers. It’s close, but I have every confidence in my boys. They’ll make it.

I really think we need to add another starting pitcher, though. I’m really worried about some of these guys. I know they’re probably just going through a rough spot, but I don’t want to take any chances. I can’t think of any guy who could come up from the minors if we needed help, but maybe there is someone I’m not thinking of. It’s extremely unlikely that Chris Young will be able to pitch this season, which really, really stinks. I feel sooooo bad for him!! This has just been horrible. Get well soon, Chris!

MLB.com’s got a great article on the front page about our boys. I’m loving it. These boys are so for real. I’m soo happy to be a Padres fan :) Blue and sand forever!!

I love my boys so much. They’re making their fans proud. I LOVE YOU PADRES!!!

GO FIRST-PLACE PADRES!!!

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