Tagged: dodgers

Unlikely Hero

Coming into last night’s game, Wade LeBlanc had had a very bad time in the majors. In the eight major league starts he had before, he had an ERA of 8.53. He also had a 16.20 ERA in two starts at Dodger Stadium. He hadn’t been that good at all in his starts with the Padres. Descent in Triple-A, but not good in the majors.

Until last night.

LeBlanc had, by far, the very best start he’s made in the major leagues. He threw six innings, allowing two hits, three walks, and struck out two. He was being aggressive, throwing strikes, and he threw an excellent game. I’m very pleased. Well done, Wade.

wadeleblanc.jpgIn the top of the first, we got two runners on with no outs. Everth walked and Eck singled. But Adrian struck out and Everth got caught stealing. Thankfully, Kouz was able to single in Eck to give us the lead.

In the top of the second, Oscar Salazar singled. Will Venable grounded out, sending Oscar to second. Then, craziness abounded. Nick Hundley singled, the hit going off the pitcher’s glove and to the shortstop. The shortstop threw past first, and as Oscar chugged around to score, the first baseman threw over the catcher’s head and into the stands. My goodness. The Dodgers got charged for two errors on that play, and the Padres got their second run.

nick sing;e.jpgAfter LeBlanc left the game, Joe Thatcher and Luke Gregerson threw. Heath Bell relieved Luke with two outs in the bottom of the eighth, with the potential tying runs on board. Heath induced a fly-out to left field to get out of the inning.

In the bottom of the ninth, Heath came back to get the save. First batter he faced singled. But, he got an excellent double play started by Kouz. Heath ended the game with a called strike to the last batter.

heath fist.jpgAnd so, we won 2-0, beating our division rivals. Sure, we’re 20 games behind them, but this time, the mouse came out on top of the cat.

cat_amp_mouse.jpgLike I said the other day, we’re playing spoiler. We keep the Dodgers down, and we can determine who’s going to win this thing. Last night’s game was not easy. We only got two runs, five hits, the whole game. The Dodgers had some big threats going. All it would have taken was a single to tie the game. Thankfully, our pitching was able to keep them down, but it wasn’t easy.

There’s a ton of energy when the Padres and Dodgers meet. The crowd was 52,965!! I definitley heard some “LET’S GO PADRES!!” out there. These series are intense.

We have no right winning this series, I know. By the numbers, we’re the worst team in the NL West. The Dodgers have been in the lead almost all year. They’re a dominating club. But this Padres team has changed since the last time we met. They’re different, better. And I think they’re going to become a playoff-hopeful team’s worst nightmare.

Mat Latos will be making his last start of the year tonight against Randy Wolf. After tonight, the Padres will be shutting down Latos, since he’s had a very large work load this year. I hope he’ll be able to have a great start to finish off a great year. Go Latos!!

GO PADRES!!! BEAT LA!!!   

Sloooooooooow Off-Day

I seriously have nothing to blog about today. I’ve been wracking my brain for something interesting to write about, but it’s not happening. Off-days, you know…

Ah ha!

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Baseball crackers!!! How fascinating is that.

Well, I think that’s all I’ve got for you today. Haha.

We’re playing the Dodgers today in Dodger Stadium. Wade LeBlanc will start and hopefully do a great job. Hopefully our bats will still be hot and our gloves crisp. Hopefully we will be able to pound the Dodgers!!

GO PADRES!! BEAT LA!!!

A Weekend of Drama

On Friday, the Padres performed terribly, and I was not happy with them. But on Saturday, they rallied back to play one of the best games of the year.

In the first inning, the Manny got his first home run since he got back, and good riddance that we got that out of the way. So, the Dodgers fans were happy, now it was time to get the Padres fans happy.

In the second, Henry Blanco singled, but was hurt rounding first. Turns out that he strained a hamstring. Eliezar Alfonso came in to catch, and the backup catcher would have been Edgar Gonzalez. I think Kouz would have been the absolute emergency catcher 🙂 

In the third, starting pitcher Josh Geer started the inning with a double, the first extra-base hit of his career. Wow.

geer double.jpgThen, Everth Cabrera laid down a sac-bunt to move him to third. Next up was David Eckstein, and all Padres fans knew that he would get the job done. I mean, runner on third with one out, Eck’s going to get him in. He’s been doing it all year. And guess what? He did it! He hit a single to tie the game. 

Things stayed scoreless until the seventh. Josh Geer threw 6.1 innings, giving up two runs and walking none. He was good. Randy Wolf on the other side was pretty good himself. He threw six innings, allowing one run and striking out eight. OK, he was a lot better than Josh!!

In the seventh, Greg Burke allowed the go-ahead run to score on a wild pitch. Oh boy. But the scoring in this game was no where near to being done.

In the bottom of the seventh, the Padres rallied to take the lead for good. Eliezar Alfonso walked, Tony Gwynn singled, and Kyle Blanks was hit by pitch. Then Everth Cabrera, the hero of the game, singled in two to give the Padres the lead.

ev's hit.jpgLater in the inning, Adrian Gonzalez singled in Everth to give us a 4-2 lead.

In the top of the eighth, the Dodgers got another run to make the game very close. 

In the bottom of the inning, Alfonso singled and Gwynn reached on an error (the Dodgers had three errors in the game!!). Heath Bell got the last out in the top of the eighth, so he was batting for himself. He hadn’t had an at-bat since 2005, but he went out there and laid down a sac-bunt. Way to go Heath!

Everth Cabrera then hit a two-run single. David Eckstein drove in Everth, and the Padres had a 7-3 lead!

In the top of the ninth, Heath Bell was all over the place. Maybe it was because he was so excited about his bunt or whatever, but he was having a hard time throwing a strike. He allowed a walk, and a single to drive in a run before striking out three. Whew!! It was pretty stressing, but Heath made it, and the Padres won the game, 7-4!!

It was such an incredible game!! “Everything” Cabrera was definitely the star. He had two hits, driving in three runs. He also had that sac-bunt. He does what needs to get done.

Not to mention his defense. He had five excellent plays to rob players at shortstop, including two against the Manny. HA! Seriously, this guy has been just amazing, and he’s only going to get better! AHHH!! He put on quite a show for the TV (FOX was broadcasting this game because of the Manny. That’s really lame, but at least the Padres played excellently and won the game!!).

I am sooo excited about this guy!! It’s going to be so much fun just to see him get better!

In the rubber game, things appeared like it would be an easy game for the Dodgers. But it ain’t over ’til my Padres say it’s over!!

Josh Banks was not that great. He allowed six runs in 4.1 innings, allowing three home runs. Ugh.

In the fifth, the Padres finally broke through to Chad Billingsley. My boy Kouz snapped an 0-for-17 streak with a solo homer. Good job, baby!!

 

kouzmanoff homer.jpgSo, we go on to the ninth. We’re losing by five runs, rubber game. Billingsley was still pitching, which just goes to show how good he was. I was taking a nap, but woke up as the inning started.

Chase Headley started it off with a solo homer. Ok, getting closer… Tony Gwynn doubled, and Chad was done for the day. In comes Jonathan Broxton, of all people. This is the huge guy, almost 300 pounds and throw upwards to 100 mph. This guy is gooooood.

But the Padres have done it before. They have scored five runs off of Broxton in the ninth at PETCO Park to win a game. Will they do it again?

David Eckstein flew out for the first out. But then Scott Hairston walked. But then Adrian Gonzalez struck out. The Dodgers were this close to getting the game…

Will Veneble singled to drive in our third run. Edgar Gonzalez and Eliezar Alfonso walked, Alfonso’s driving in a run. I was hanging on every pitch, by the way. It was so crazy!!

Next up was Everth Cabrera. Now, this was probably the most stressing at-bat of the whole inning. Oh man. He ran the count to full before finally hitting it. It went through the middle into center, and two runs scored to tie the game. But the center fielder threw to third and got the out there. So, the inning was over, but we had tied the game. It was great, but so sad. If the baserunner hadn’t made that blunder, we would have had the winning run right there. That was really disappointing, but we did great. We got five runs. We did the improbable.

But things didn’t go well from there. We had perfect opportunities to get the game won, but my boys were trying too hard. Finally, in the top of the 13th, James Loney hit a solo homer to put the Dodgers on top. I hate James Loney.

The Padres couldn’t do anything in the bottom of the inning, despite leaving two runners on, and so we lost, 7-6.

The Dodgers left 14 runners on in the whole game. Wow. The Padres left six, but we should have won that game. In my eyes, we won that game in the ninth. We should have, anyways. It was very disappointing to lose that game, but we played very well in the last two games. I was pleased with that.

But this team is still not that great.

Well, Adrian Gonzalez got his second All-Star honor. He was voted in by the players. At least someone is noticing how good he is. Goodness. Also, Heath Bell is getting his first All-Star appearance. This guy was languishing in the Mets minor league system just a few years ago, and now he’s an All-Star. That’s pretty amazing. Congrats to Adrian and Heath!!

It is with a very sad heart that I must announce the trade of Scott Hairston to the Oakland A’s. I love Scotty!! I learned the terrible news this morning, and boy was I disappointed. We got Scotty in 2007, and he was essential to our playoff run that year. He was the one who hit the big two-run homer in Game 163 in the top of the 13th. Known for his multiple walk-off homers with us, we loved having him here. He’s an excellent player who works so hard. He always runs hard to first, even if it’s an out. He’s an amazing center fielder as well. He’s made some incredible plays. I’m going to miss Scotty so much!! He’s been so amazing with us, and it’s so sad that he had to leave. We’ll miss you sooo much Scotty!! Thanks for all the great times an memories in San Diego!!!

We’re getting three minor league pitchers for him. They’d better be good.

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So, it was a really interesting weekend in Padres baseball. We’re going to Arizona next for three games with the Diamondbacks. I really hope we can just play well. The fans deserve at least that.

Walter Silva will be pitching against Jon Garland. Silva really really needs to get back on track, or else he might be headed for a certain minor league team soon.

GO PADRES!!!

Two-Hitter

I’m blaming this one on Roy Oswalt.

roy oswalt.jpgI bet Jake Peavy was going crazy in the dugout. Sitting there on the bench with his ankle in a cast, he was probably itching to be out there, knowing that he should be the one on the mound pitching against his buddy. He must have been ragging on Roy all night after the game over the phone, but what Oswalt did to the Padres was no laughing matter. It was amazing.

Roy pitched the whole game, allowing two hits and one run. That run came in on a wild pitch. That just goes to show how good he was. Man, TWO hits?? Goodness. We were utterly shut down. Roy had a excellent outing.

On the Padres side, Josh Geer wasn’t bad, but he wasn’t good enough. He threw seven innings, allowing three runs on seven hits. He didn’t walk a batter though, which was great.

Greg Burke and Cla Meredith each threw a scoreless inning.

But the game ended with a 3-1 Astros score. It should be said, though, that the Padres hit some balls really well, but were robbed by some great defense. 

And so, we lost. We are now 15 games behind the Dodgers, by the way. We gained a couple games over the weekend, but those Dodgers keep winning and winning. And watch out – the Manny is coming back this weekend against the Padres. I think we may have a sold-out weekend…

Just because you wanted to know, Kouz is slightly growing out his beard right now and IT LOOKS AMAZING!!!  AHHHHH!! I love it when he does that. He doesn’t look that great clean-shaven. He looks so great with a beard!! But of course, he looks great all the time 😀

Well, Josh Banks is going to start against Mike Hampton. Banks hasn’t started for us a while, but I’m pretty sure he started last year. I’m not sure how well he did, but he must have had some decent outings. It will be very interesting to see how he does.

GO PADRES!!!   

Facing the Giants

Yesterday was an off-day. It was very different not having a game, but I was still catching up from Sunday, so it was all good. I did get some exciting news, though: Hyun Young is treating me to a Padres game in July…in these incredible seats!

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It’s going to be so much fun, and I’m already planning it all out. I can’t wait for July 18th! That’s going to be the third game in a series against the Rockies, so maybe Tom and Jen will be there that night. I know Hyun Young and I will have so much fun cheering for our Padres and cheering against the Rockies 🙂

Thanks Hyun Young!! 🙂

On Saturday, I went to my brother’s last regular season game. His team won 24-8. I was keeping score, and it was absolutely crazy. They got nine runs in the first inning, and 12 runs in the fourth. It was insane to keep score, but I survived. Well, pretty much. I did get a terrible sunburn on my arms. Thankfully, we were in the shade most of the game on Sunday, so it didn’t get worse.

Tonight we are playing the Giants, thankfully still at home. My best friends and their family are going to be at the game! I am so excited for them, and hopefully they’ll take lots of pictures for me.

It will be interesting to see how my Padres do tonight. We’ve got the momentum from the sweep over the weekend, as well as a day of rest. Chris Young is going to be starting, and hopefully he can give us a solid outing.

Last time out in Chicago, he gave up four home runs in only a few innings. But I think he will be much better at home, without the Wrigley wind. Last time the Giants were in town, we swept them in three. Hint hint…

Even with the sweep over the weekend, we are still 10 games behind the Dodgers. But we are in third place. I think we moved up a few spots, but that’s probably because the Rockies and Diamondbacks are not doing well down there. Hey, if we were able to sweep the Giants in this series, we would gain a few games on them at least.

Well, if we just keep that pitching and hitting from the weekend, we will be in good shape.

GO PADRES!!!

(photo credit: Hyun Young/padres.com)   

Padres Split Series!

I guess my Padres didn’t want to travel to Houston in a school bus.
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Chris Young started the game, going six innings, allowing three runs on five hits with four walks and six strikeouts. He had a great outing, he was battling hard.

On the other side, Dan Haren was doing a great job as well. He went six innings, giving up eight hits and three runs with two walks on four strikeouts.

In the third, the Diamondbacks struck first. After a single from Chris Snyder, Dan Haren of all people hit a double to help his own cause. He got to third on an error, and touched the plate on a sacrifice fly.

In the fifth, the Padres found a crack in Haren’s armor and were actually able to take advantage of it!

With two outs, Chris Young walked, Brian Giles singled, and Edgar Gonzalez drove in CY for our first run. Scott Hairston came to the plate and check-swinged on a pitch. Except the ball hit the bat and went into right field to drive in Giles. It was pretty bizarre!

In the sixth, the Diamondbacks added a run to take the lead. But in the bottom of the inning, we got that run right back.

With one out, my boy Kouz hit a single. Nick Hundley then doubled, and Kouz ran all the way home. I love this dude, but he’s really slow. It’s almost painfully to watch. He’s not as bad as say, Henry Blanco the Galapagos tortoise, but he’s still slow. So he almost got thrown out at the plate. But he scored safely, so that’s all that matters.

The game stayed tied for a long time. The Padres bullpen was able to hold the game, though. Barely.

Edwin Moreno came into the seventh, and got a few runners on with no outs, including two walks. I’m telling you, this guy is going to be on the bus to Triple-A very soon unless he stops walking people like he does. We just can’t have that, especially when he walks the first batter in a tie game. No no no.

Thankfully, Luke Gregerson came in and cleaned up Moreno’s mess, keeping the game tied. He also pitched a scoreless eighth.

Heath Bell took the ninth, allowing nothing and striking out one. Man, he’s sharp!

In the bottom of the ninth, Scott Hairston singled, but Adrian Gonzalez grounded into a double play.

Onto extra innings for the second time this week!

Cla Meredith pitched the top of the tenth, throwing five pitches to get three outs. He was sharp!

In the bottom of the tenth, it was time to close this thing down. Jody Gerut started it with a strikeout, but then Kouz doubled. Nick Hundley walked, and Chris Burke came to the plate. 

Burke had a great at-bat. He fouled off six pitches, keeping the count full for a long time. He made the pitcher throw ten pitches before finally taking ball four to load the bases. That at-bat was crucial to winning the game.

Next, Hyun Young’s boy David Eckstein came to the plate. He only needed to take a strike and a ball before lining a single past the first baseman to score my boy Kouz. 

We win!!

It was such a great game! We did leave 13 runners on base, which was very frustrating, but we were able to get some clutch hits and win the game.

I was very pleased with our pitching, especially the bullpen. They didn’t give up a run, which is so rare!

My boy Kouz had THREE hits, two singles and a double. He’s definitley been scuffling, so it’s great that he was able to have a good game like that. 

We had 13 hits total, which we haven’t had in a long time. I am so glad that we were hitting!

It was a great win for the Padres and their fans, but apparently the Diamondbacks aren’t too happy with their 12-17 record. Arizona fired manager Bob Melvin today. They’re replacing him with A.J. Hinch. Interesting…

Manny is a jerk. Unfortunately, the Padres are only going to play the Dodgers twice during his suspension. 

“It would have been nice if this had happened in spring training,” pitching ace Jake Peavy said. “I wouldn’t have had to face him.” 

The Dodgers finally lost last night. They built up a six run lead, but blew it and lost 11-9 against the Natinals. Of all teams. Wow. 

Well, I can’t say I’m entirely disappointed that Manny was suspended or that the Dodgers lost. My Padres are now only 7.5 games behind, third place in the NL West!

Well boys, I hope you enjoyed your luxury flight to Houston!

 
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Tonight Chad Gaudin is pitching against Wandy Rodriguez. It will be a very interesting game…

GO PADRES!!

(photo credits: Union-Tribune, flickr.com) 

Killing the Gem

Last night, Jake Peavy pitched an absolute gem.

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Eight innings, two hits, one walk. Eight strikeouts. That was Jake Peavy out there in Dodger Stadium last night. He’s had some bad outings, some OK outings, but this was definitely one of his best. He’s always owned the Dodgers, and last night was no different.

JakePeavy_2006_017.jpgBut on the other side, Clayton Kershaw was shutting down my Padres. Kershaw has been pretty good against us, and he held us to four hits and two walks for seven innings. We got nothing against three Dodgers relievers.

The whole story of this game was the ninth inning. Scoreless game, Duaner Sanchez comes in to pitch. He allowed a single, then two walks.

He’s trying to get out of this inning, send the game into extras to give his team a chance. He’s got the bases loaded, but two outs. Russell Martin comes to the plate.

Swinging strike. Good. Ball. Ball in dirt. Not good. Then FOUR foul balls. That must have been really stressing for all the people listening to the game. Then another ball. We’ve got a full count. Yet another foul.

The tension is at its climax here. The runners on all the bases crouch, ready to sprint to the next stop. Sanchez is dripping sweat. He wipes his face nervously, but it doesn’t help the sweat that much. He glances over his shoulders, checking the dancing runners. Finally he turns to his catcher, picking up the sign.

The crowd of 47,210 is on their feet, cheering with all they’ve got. Full count…Sanchez finally throws the pitch…it sails to home plate…and it’s a ball.

Game over. 1-0 Dodgers.

Man.

Sanchez has been terrible. I’m sorry, but we really need to get rid of him. He’s done nothing but help us lose ever since the beginning of the season. You just can’t put a guy like that in a scoreless game, bottom of the ninth. I have no idea why Buddy didn’t take him out. But let me tell you, I wouldn’t be suprised if he got sent down soon. I would be relieved. (Get it? Relieved, relievers in the bullpen? Haha? Wow, that’s bad!!)

Jake, I mean, WOW. He did an incredible job out there, owning the Dodgers as he usually does. He deserved that win. I am so glad that he had a solid outing. He needed it, his team needed it, and the fans needed it. Unfortunately, we can’t even win when Jake gives us a near-perfect outing. Reminds me of last year…

That’s what’s scaring me. We’re 11-12 right now, having lost nine out of our last eleven. This year is starting to remind me of last year. We’re not hitting, our bullpen is miserable, and we’re losing. I’m really worried about this team right now.

I had hoped that we would be able to at least split this series with the Dodgers. We would have to win the next two games to do that. I just am not seeing a winning team right now. I’m pretty sure we can get this game tonight, but I don’t know if we could handle winning two games in a row. 

I don’t know what to do with this team. I mean, there’s nothing I can personally do, but I don’t know what the front office can do either. We definitley need new pitching, starting and bullpen. Our hitters…I have no idea. We got four hits total last night, but we were going against a really good pitcher (I wonder how much longer I can use that excuse!).

We aren’t hitting that great. Quite a few of our guys are off to sloooow starts. We definitely aren’t pitching, especially at the end of the bullpen.

I’m not pressing this yet…

panic-button.jpg…but this team has got to get it going. We need to play hard. We need to be able to beat the really good teams like the Dodgers. We have to be able to if we want to go anywhere in this division.

Tonight it’s an Opening Week re-match of Chris Young and Randy Wolf. Last time they met on that second game of the season, CY came out on top. I was at that game 🙂

Hopefully, our second ace will be able to pull of an excellent outing. And our hitters had better give him some support. And the bullpen had better not give up so much as a run, or else…

sd-go-padres.jpg(photo credits: files.turbosquid.com, chrisoleary.com, zillow.com, gorirrajoe.com)