Tagged: scott hairston

One-Hitter

On Saturday, my Padres came up with a great win. Kevin Correia pitched like the ace he is. He threw seven innings, allowing three runs with nine strikeouts. He was gooood.

The offense backed him up really well, so there wasn’t much pressure. In the second, we got three runs on five hits, including doubles by David Eckstein and Kyle Blanks.

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 It was a great, great game. We had a season-high 16 hits. Eckstein, Blanks, Blanco, and Cabrera each had two hits. Kouz and Chase Headley each had three. Scott Hairston was the only one who didn’t have a hit, but he made some spectacular catches in center field. He was robbing out there! 

Edward Mujica and Mike Adams were great out of the bullpen. It was overall just a great, well-played game.

But what a game we got on Sunday. Even better than Saturday’s. It was clean, simple, quick, but boy was it good.

Chad Gaudin allowed a hit with one out in the bottom of the first…and then he didn’t allow a thing for the rest of the game. He had nine strikeouts in eight innings. He was so good, it’s incredible. This pitcher is not the same pitcher we saw earlier in the year. Man, what a great pitching performance by Gaudin!!

I mean, he threw a ONE hitter!! Man, that was great.

chad gaudin gem.jpgOn the offensive side, it was all Scott Hairston. I bet he was pretty upset about not getting any hits on Saturday, so he got them on Sunday. He went 3-for-4 with a single, double, and home run. He drove in our only two runs.

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scott kouz.jpgGoodness, that is a REALLY funny picture!!! HAHAHAHAHAHA!!! Kouz: High five? Scotty: People to see, places to go… 

Anyways, Chase Headley and Kyle Blanks each had two hits. I’ve been really pleased with Blanks. He’s really getting into a groove.

Heath Bell came in the ninth, walking a batter, but turned a 1-4-3 double play to win the game, 2-0.

It was a great, great game. The pitching was incredible. We did leave quite a few runners on, but we got just enough.

And so, we won a series for the first time since May 25-27 against the Diamonbacks. Yeah, it had been a while. And now we’re done with interleague!!! WHOOO HOOOO!!!! That is so exciting. We were 5-10 in interleague play. We didn’t really survive, but we’re done with it. Whew.

Tonight we are going to be back home. YES!!!! That’s huge. Anyways, we’re playing the Astros for three, then the Dodgers and the return of the Manny.

Where on earth did Mariano Rivera come from?? I mean, he got his 500th save last night. What’s up with that?? Ahem, Trevor Hoffman is the all-time saves leader, and I mean ALL-TIME. I don’t think anyone should overtake him or I will be quite upset. Goodness. You’d better get pumping, Trevor, ’cause you’ve got a guy right on your heels!!

I would like to share a few pictures that my sister took of a baseball. Believe me, they’re amazing. She has a really cheap camera, but she’s really got a talent with that photography thing.

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 That’s Trevor Hoffman’s autograph. Good job sista!!!

Well, it’s Josh Geer vs. Roy Oswalt tonight. I really hope we can extend the two-game winning streak!!

Isn’t it amazing what your team does when you threaten to boycott them? πŸ™‚

GO PADRES!!!

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) 

Elusive As The Win

Well, what can I say? I mean, really. We lost. Again. We needed that game so badly, and we lost. It’s the bullpen’s fault, as usual.

Kevin Correia started, but only went 3.1 innings, allowing five runs on eight hits. Not good. Correia’s pitch count went way up way early, but I think Buddy was fighting for this game. OK, Kevin can’t pitch tonight, so he’s coming out. Bring in the next guy, see what he can do.

In the bottom of the third, the Padres got three runs to make the score 5-3 Rockies. We got the runs on a error, and single by Scott Hairston, and a groundout.

Edward Mujica threw a solid inning, striking out three.

In the bottom of the fifth, we took our only lead of the game on Scott Hairston’s three run homer. It seemed like that was the momentum shifter to the Padres side, but unfortunately, it was not meant to be.

In the top of the seventh, Edwin Moreno got the bases loaded with one out. Cla Meredith came in, and promptly allowed a grand slam to Chris Iannetta. ARGH!!!!

And…that was essentially it. We died, going down 1-2-3 in the next three innings excepting Scott Hairston’s double in the eighth. Luke Gregerson and Arturo Lopez had scoreless innings. 

We’re not hitting right now. Last night we got four hits. This makes me want to cry! Scott Hairston got three of them. Luis Rodriguez had the other one. We’re not hitting, we not pitching, it’s a miracle that we got six runs last night!!

Well, we needed that game. Now, the fans are giving up, and the players have got to be discouraged. We’ve lost our last six games. We’re 7.5 games behind.

We’re pathetic. I just don’t know what to do with this team.

Maybe some more restictions are in order…

9) No more luxury lockers.

lockers.jpg10) 25% reduction in wages. The players aren’t doing anything, so why should the Padres be paying them?

losingmoney.jpg11) None of the players can leave the stadium until we win, which means they will need to camp out.

sleeping bag.jpgOutside.

moon.jpg12) Hey, while they’re camping out on the field, they can have a campfire and burn the sand uniforms!

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jake sand.jpg(not while they are still wearing them, of course)

And of course, there will be no s’mores allowed. Just Vegemite.

vegemite175.jpg(thanks to Ash for restriction ideas!)

I wanted to give a quick shoutout to my mom, whose birthday is today. Happy birthday Mom! Thanks so much for everything πŸ™‚

IMG_4137.JPGTonight, we had better win…or else the Padres may find themselves without any showers at all! Josh Geer will go for the win against Aaron Cook. Oh great. Jen, cheer for my Padres. Cheer for them hard!! 

Keeping the faith…

GO PADRES!!! 

Comeback Kids

What a weekend for Padres baseball. I’m telling you, this team has been just incredible. Wow…

  • Friday: 8-7 Padres

Chris Young started the game, allowing five runs in the first inning to the Phillies. He ended up going only 3.2 innings, allowing seven runs on nine hits. 

5-0 deficit by the second? No problemo for my Padres. In the third, we got our first run from a solo homer by Luis Rodruguez. Down 7-1 going into the fifth, the Padres got two more runs on a home run by Scott Hairston. They got two more in the sixth thanks to Nick Hundley’s first home run of the season, driving in Kouz.

In the eighth, Jody Gerut singled in a run. Scott Hairston hit a two-run double to take the lead from the Phillies.    

Meanwhile, the bullpen was incredible. Luis Perdomo, Luke Gregerson, Cla Meredith, Duaner Sanchez, all had scoreless outings. It was so great!

Heath Bell struck out two batters to get his sixth save of the season. Cla Meredith got the win.  

It was such a great game. The Padres were behind 5-0, 7-1, and they came all the way back to win. How ’bout them Padres?!

  • Saturday: 8-5 Padres

Shawn Hill started the game and gave up two runs in five innings. The first run he gave up was in the second, a solo homer to Raul Ibanez.

In the third, the Padres got that run back and added another on a two-run homer from Adrian Gonzalez, his fourth of the season. We got another one in the fifth on a double from Brian Giles.

But the Phillies got one in each of the fifth and the sixth to tie the game at three. The Padres took the lead by one in the top of the ninth, but the Phillies took that away with two in the bottom of the inning.

In comes Brad Lidge, who had 47 straight saves. Notice the word “had”. Jody Gerut started the ninth with a double, followed by two groundouts. But the second one drove Jody in, and we had a tie game. Adrian Gonzalez and Chase Headley walked for my boy Kouz.

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Anyways, Kouz came to the plate with two runners on, and he pounded that little ball with his big strong arms and sent it out of there to take an 8-5 lead. What a player!!

Heath Bell came in for the third game in a row, going 1-2-3 to earn his seventh save of the season. Cla Meredith got the win again. 

It was a great game. We kept fighting, and we came out on top. Yay Kouz!! He was on front of the sports section in the newspaper yesterday, and it was such a cute picture!

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  •  5-4 Phillies

It was a good game for the Padres, but unfortunately, the bullpen did not get its job done.

Josh Geer, who just got called up in the place of Walter Silva, threw seven innings, allowing only two runs, only one earned. He had a great outing!

The Padres got three runs in the third on a Jody Gerut single, an Edgar Gonzalez triple, and a Brian Giles groundout. We added one more in the fifth on Adrian Gonzalez’s fifth home run of the season.

But the Phillies got two in the sixth and one in the eighth. In the bottom of the ninth, with a 4-3 Padres lead, Edwin Moreno came in to save the game. Heath had pitched three games in a row, and he needed a break. But if Moreno hadn’t pitched, I have a good feeling that we would have won.

Edwin gave up a single to Ryan Howard, and two pitches later, a walk-off homer to Raul Ibanez.

That was kind of sad, but we played hard, and the pitching was mostly great. It’s really too bad that Heath wasn’t able to pitch. I think he would have had that save, but at least he’s still 6-for-6.

Today is the fourth game of the series, Kevin Correia against Jamie Moyer. It’s going to be so cool to see how these Padres do.

Right now, they don’t think they can be beaten. They don’t think that they’re going to lose. They are going out there every day believing that they can win, even if they are down 5-0, 7-1, 3-0. There’s no stopping this team.

“We don’t need to win every single day … but we have that confidence that we can beat anyone,” Heath Bell said.

I am so excited about these Padres!

The retreat went really well. We stayed at a beautiful cabin right by a lake, and it was so beautiful and peaceful. It was a great trip. Nice to get away…

The weather was so perfect up there, and then we came back down. It was in the high 90s and it was miserable. It’s supposed to be even hotter today. I HATE THE HEAT!!! Ugh. We don’t have air conditioning in our house so we just about die when it gets this hot. AHHHHHH!!! 

Let’s get this game tonight, boys. GO PADRES!!!

(photo credit: Union Tribune)  

Forgettable

  • 7-2 Mets

Oh boy. Let’s just say that it was bad. I don’t even want to go into it that deeply. Kevin Correia went five innings, allowing two runs on five hits. But the bullpen finally crumped in a very strange 7th inning. The Mets got four runs in that inning, thanks to some sloppy plays and defense. Oh well. It’s not even worth going into detail. Suffice it to say that Luke Gregerson gave up his first two runs of the season, Edward Mujica gave up two runs, and Luis Perdomo gave up a solo home run in his major league debut. Nice.

On the offensive side, Scott Hairston drove in a run in the fifth. In the top of the ninth, Adrian Gonzalez hit a solo homer. This one was special though, as it was his 100th career home run. Congrats Adrian!

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I know he’ll downplay it because it didn’t help the team win (and that’s all that matters to him), but it is a big accomplishment. So congrats to Adrian on #100!

Scott Hairston and Luis Rodriguez had two hits each, but that was mostly it. It was a saaad game. Definitley the worst so far, and I am so ready for the game tonight. Jake’s pitching, so that will be perfect to erase this nasty game.

Today is the rubber game…the last game in this series against the Mets. Jake Peavy, Henry Blanco catching him, I think we’re going to have a great game. WE NEED YOU JAKE!!

GO PADRES!!!!

Sweep ‘Em Outta Here

What a weekend! These Padres are on a roll!

  • Friday: 7-3 Padres

Shawn Hill started the game, going five innings and giving up only two runs on seven hits. We picked up this guy like, last week. I think it’s great that he was able to pitch so well on Friday! 

The rest of the bullpen was great. Hill left the game with the bases loaded and no outs. Luke Gregerson came in and got a grounder to first, where Adrian Gonzalez fired it home to get the force out, and Nick Hundley threw it back to get the hitter. Gregerson then struck out the next batter. I have been really pleased with Luke this week. He’s been so solid!

Let me tell you, the pitching has been incredible so far. And when the offense and defense is solid too, the Padres are going to have a good night at the ball yard.

The man of the night, as he has been for many nights, was Scott Hairston. First off, he got a single and scored our first run in the bottom of the first. We got three runs in the bottom of the first, thanks in part to a Brian Giles double and a Kevin Kouzmanoff single.

In the fourth, Brian Giles drove in David Eckstein with a single for the 4-1 lead. In the top of the seventh, Bengie Molina was at the plate with a runner on. He hit a long shot to left center field, and it looked like it was going out. Chase Headley was running over there from left field, but Scotty came in from center, leaping at the wall, and catching the ball. If Scotty hadn’t caught that, it would have been a tying two-run homer. Instead, Molina, disbelieving, was out. It was an incredible catch by Scott Hairston!

He wasn’t done though. In the bottom of that seventh, he came up to the plate with two runners on. What does he do? He hits a three-run homer! What a night for this guy! All in all, he had three hits, drove in three runs, stole a base, and made some spectacular plays. Hairston has done nothing but incredible things since we got him in late 2007. What a player!

Edward Mujica and Duaner Sanchez had scoreless innings. Edwin Moreno ran into a little trouble in the ninth, allowing a run, but he got out of it and closed the game. 

This was an all-around incredible game. The pitching was solid, the defense was fantastic, the offense was amazing. All the guys in the top of the order had a really good game. Scotty, Eckstein, Giles…whoo hoo!

  • Saturday: 6-3 Padres

Jake Peavy. Mexico Opening Night. Adrian Gonzalez long-sleeved T-shirt night. ‘Nuff said!

Jake was excellent last night, very Jake-like. His Opening Day start was solid, but he wasn’t the best. This time was the real Jake. Take 8.1 innings, 10 strikeouts, three runs, 106 pitches. He was so sharp, so on his game. It was incredible!

Both starting pitchers were really good for the first few innings. Jake and Jonathan Sanchez weren’t giving up anything. Until the third. Padres catcher Henry Blanco started off the inning with a solo homer.

But the Giants got that run right back in the top of the fifth. In the bottom of the sixth, the Padres took the lead for good. Henry Blanco led off the inning again, and he hit a solo homer again. Jake walked, Scott Hairston singled, and David Eckstein walked. Brian Giles flew out, but then Adrian Gonzalez hit a double that cleared the bases. It was great.

Chase Headley hit his first homer of the season, getting the Padres’ sixth and last run of the night.

In the top of the ninth, Jake started running into some trouble. He had 105 pitches, and his next one was a run-scoring double. So, Buddy took him out. Jake wasn’t too happy about it, I know he wanted to finish the game out. But Heath Bell came in to save his third game in three chances. He got a strikeout, then a pop-out to my boy Kouz in foul territory. Yay!

It was a great win for the Padres. Jake and Henry each had a really great game. By the way, Peavy and Blanco have been working really well together. I wouldn’t be surprised if Blanco caught Jake for the rest of the season.

  •  Sunday: 6-1 Padres

I got to watch the majority of this game, probably from the fourth inning to the end. It was so much fun to be able to see all the players and to see the game fold out before my eyes. I never get to watch baseball, so it’s really special for me to just be able to watch a game on TV!

Chris Young against Tim Lincecum. What a matchup! I knew it would be a classic game, but I thought my Padres would come out on top. We had the momentum, and CY was very solid his last time out. This time, he was even better.

He went seven innings, giving up five hits and one unearned run with seven strikeouts. He even hit a single, his second hit of the season! He was mowing, man. I was really pleased with his outing. He did a great, great job.

Lincecum was good, too. He seemed a lot more vulnerable than when we faced him last year. Maybe it’s just because of the confidence the Padres and their fans have. But I knew my Padres could beat him, even if he won the CY Young last year. He seems to have been off to a slow start this season. He was getting us out, but he wasn’t overpowering and dominating like last year.

In the third, the Padres’ offense turned on. Jody Gerut doubled, and a few batters later, Adrian Gonzalez drove him in with a single. Chase Headley then hit his second homer of the season.

In the sixth, Nick Hundley tripled to start the inning and Luis Rodriguez promptly sacrifice-flied him in.

The seventh led off with Adrian and Chase each hitting a single. Nick singled to drive in Adrian and Rodriguez sac-flied again to drive in Chase.

Luke Gregerson came into the game to relieve CY. He allowed two hits, but he threw two solid innings and has not given up a run yet. He’s pitched five innings so far this week.

Adrian Gonzalez had two hits, Kouz had two hits, Chase had two hits, and Nick Hundley had four hits, a career high. Nick actually went single, double, triple…and single. Too bad he didn’t hit for the cycle, but still a great game for Nick. 

It was a great 6-1 win for the Padres. I think the best word that describes this team right now is solid. The pitching has been incredibly solid, the hitting has been solid, and the defense has been solid. This team is solid, confident, and they are winners!

We’re on top of the NL West right now. I know, I know, it’s crazy early, but we’re on top! This team that is supposed to lose 100+ games is better than anyone in the West right now. They’re on a four-game winning streak, and I don’t see any stopping them. They are fired up and totally confident. They go out there every game with a winning mindset. I know it’s clichΓ©, but this team really has it. They really think, know, that they can win every single game. I really don’t see them stopping now. I mean, I’m sure we’re going to lose sometime, but right now, we are on a roll.

This team is exciting. They are exceeding expectations, they are winning, playing hard. They’re turning some heads. We can do this. We can win this crazy NL West. I truly believe that we have a chance for the playoffs this year. Of course, this is me speaking after the first week. There’s a ton of baseball left to be played. But there’s no doubt, no matter what happens for the rest of the season, we will remember this week. It was the start of hope. It was shocking, exciting, unexpected. For this one week at least, the Padres were good. They played the best baseball they’ve played in a long time. But best of all, they played together, and they won. They won five games, four in a row. This week showed how real baseball is supposed to be played. They played hard, they played solid, and they won, together.

That’s my team! That my Padres! Yep, that’s us ON TOP OF THE NL WEST!! Nope, not dead last, but very first. I am so fired up about these Padres!

The next victim, er, should I say opponent, is the New York Mets. Citi Field will be opening today. The Padres will have the honor of being the first opposing team in the stadium. Walter Silva will get to pitch against Mike Pelfrey. I expect Silva to be much more confident and calm as he goes out for his second big league start.

Four in a row, boys. Let’s make it five.

GO PADRES!!!!!    

Looking Ahead to the 2009 Padres

Welcome to 2009! I think this will be a great year in MLB. It will just be great to have baseball back! And I’m sure Spring Training will be here before we know it! I am very excited.

So, last night the MLB Network launched. It’s really exciting for the world of baseball fans. But not so much for me, because I don’t have cable, and as a result I don’t get to watch ANY baseball on TV, not to mention the MLB Network. So, am I less of a fan because I can’t watch baseball 24/7….just kidding. If I did have it, I would be glued to the TV 24/7 and my family and friends would hate me. It would also wear severely on my education, and I don’t think my parents would let me do that. Oh well.

But anyways, 2009 is here. The Padres this year are going to look a lot different than the team last year. I would like to look at some of the players who were on the team last year, and how different it will be this year.

 

year in review bud black st.jpgBUD BLACK, MANAGER

Last year, the second year manager was going into the season after a 89-74 record the year before. His team had been one game away from the playoffs. But last year, something went horribly wrong. He was put in charge of a team that lost 99 games. I really do not think it was his fault. He has the ability to coach a team far into the postseason, if he has the right pieces. He doesn’t have enough pieces here, though. In 2009, he’s going to have to lead a team made up of mostly rookies. Let’s see what he can do with them.

year in review catchers.jpgJOSH BARD AND MICHAEL BARRETT, CATCHERS

Josh Bard went into 2008 with a fairly good season under his belt. He was at one point in 2007 our best player with runners in scoring position. But 2008 was not so great for Bardo. He was riddled with injuries for the majority of the season. He did have a few good games, but he was not that great in 2008. Michael Barrett was not our guy. In 2007 and 2008, he was plagued with injuries, and in the time he did play, he was bad. He was very frustrating to the fans. He just never turned on. Josh Bard is going to the Red Sox for 2009. That will be very interesting, but very exciting for me. I love the Red Sox and I love Bardo, so it works out. I don’t know where Barrett will end up. Maybe he can go somewhere and have a good season. We’ll see.

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CHRIS YOUNG, STARTING PITCHER

Last year, CY came into Spring Training after a frustrating oblique strain in 2007. He was able to regain his old form for part of the season, but was never the same after he got hit in the face with a batted ball. He was able to salvage a bit of the season though. Going into 2009, he will be the #2 starter behind Jake Peavy. Hopefully he will be able to stay injury-free this season. This guy is a good pitcher, and he’s a solid part of our rotation. If he can stay healthy, he will be a positive part of this rotation.

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JAKE PEAVY, STARTING PITCHER

Jake went into the 2008 season with the NL CY Young award and a new contract extension. Things did not go very well for Jake, though. He was out with an injury, and his offense couldn’t score runs for him. He did do a fairly good job, considering, but he finished the season with a 10-11 record. You know that Jake was not happy about that. After enduring trade talks for the past few months, hopefully he is here to stay for the 2009 season. Believe me, we need this guy in our rotation. He brings so much to the team, and it would be a huge blow to give him away. Hopefully he can return to his form of 2007.

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ADRIAN GONZALEZ, FIRST BASEMAN

Adrian was really good in 2007. He was amazing in 2008. He was such a positive on this horrible team, it was incredible to see. Adrian’s all about teamwork, the team effort, but he had a wonderful season induvidually. 36 home runs, 119 RBIs, and he won a Gold Glove. I don’t think he had a game off during the season. He doesn’t complain, he just goes out there every day and plays baseball. He’s very humble, and he does a lot of charity work. It’s pretty amazing. This year, he will be the first baseman. He’s almost becoming a veteran on this team of young guys!

SCOTT HAIRSTON, OUTFIELDER                                                                         
year in review scotty bp.jpg

Last year, Scotty was fighting for a spot in the outfield. This year, he will be doing the same thing. He will probably be on the bench (again), but he’s not a bench player. He does a lot better when he can play every day. Unforunately, our outfield situation is pretty much locked up with Chase Headley, Jody Gerut, and Brian Giles. But we’ll see. Hopefully Scotty can find a spot on this team. He really is a great player; he’s hit 4 or 5 walk-offs for us in the last two years. Plus he can play a wonderful center and left. He filled in very nicely when Jody Gerut needed a day or two last year.

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EDGAR GONZALEZ, INFIELDER

Last offseason, Edgar was signed to a minor league deal with the Padres. This was pretty exciting because 1) He has grown up watching the Padres, and 2) he would be joining his younger brother Adrian. Edgar didn’t make the Opening Day roster, because Tadahito Iguchi had his position of second, but when Iguchi went down with an injury, Edgar was called up. He made his major league debut after 8 years in the minors. How incredible is that? And doing it on his younger brother’s team no less! He was really good with us, too. This year, he looks to be the starting second baseman.

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TREVOR HOFFMAN, CLOSER

Last year, Trevor was coming off a heartbreaking blown save. He did get a little cleanup surgery for his elbow in the offseason, and he was as good as new going into 2008. He wasn’t the best record-wise, but he was so sharp mechanics-wise. In fact, his stuff was the best it’s been in years. But the Trevor-bashers were out in hordes. A blown save, and they screamed to kick him off the team. It was pretty sad. Trevor finished pretty well. He had 30 saves. He is the best closer of our time, with 554 saves in his career. It’s pretty amazing. After bad negotiations with the Padres, he is now a free agent. Maybe the Padres will still be able to get him back. We’ll see. The fans would really like him back!!

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HEATH BELL, PITCHER

Last year, he was just getting ready for his role as set-up man to Trevor Hoffman. This year, he might have to replace Trevor Hoffman. How do you replace a guy like Trevor Hoffman? Heath has 1 career save; Trevor has 554. Heath has the closer’s mentality. He’s said that he would be willing to replace Trevor someday…but only if Trevor handed off the role to him. I’m sure Heath would be content with staying in the set-up role if Trevor was able to come back. But right now, it looks like Heath will be the closer for this team. That’s pretty sad. I mean, it’s great for Heath, but the Padres have had 1 closer for 15 years. We want that closer back.

Many other players have taken different directions, are doing different things. This team will be very different. But general manager Kevin Towers has said that the majority of our signings will be late January to early February. We could still have a great team. And I think it will be a pretty good year of Padres baseball.