Saturday, June 2, 2012

Random Thoughts on Game 54 (vs Diamondbacks)

Well, Daniel Hudson beat the Padres again, improving to 5-1 lifetime against San Diego, although his ERA ballooned to 1.86.  The winning run scored thanks to a Joe Thatcher balk; the insurance run scored courtesy of an Alex Hinshaw bases loaded walk.

Highlights of the game for me:

1.  The bottom of the fourth was the most fun I've had watching the Padres this year.  Will Venable executed a perfect drag bunt to start the inning, then stole second. Cameron Maybin lined a single to right, and an excellent slide by Venable just beat Manny Parra's throw to the plate.  Maybin, who had taken second on the throw home, then scored standing up on Yonder Alonso's soft single to center.  Alonso then defied the Fates by stealing second.

Sadly that was the end of the fun.  Carlos Quentin flied to Parra, who threw out Alonso trying to tag and go to third.  Parra had also thrown out Cabrera in the third trying to stretch a double into a triple; the moral is, as always, don't run on Parra.

But that is the way the Padres should play the game.  The team doesn't have a lot of power, and doesn't have an offensively charged lineup like St Louis or Texas.  They need to press the action, and use the one asset - SPEED - they do possess.  Make the opposing team's defense turn the perfect relay or play to stop the madness.

2.  Back in December, Quentin told XX 1090's Darren Smith he didn't have any walk-up music and didn't want any.  I've been waiting for 2 months to see if he meant it.  He did.  Quentin is rapidly becoming my favorite Padre.

3.  Thru three plate appearanes, Arizona's Montero and Young had the exact same line - 2 walks, and a strikeout looking.  Odd.

4.  Cabrera made a very heads-up play to snuff an Arizona rally in the second.  He gloved Josh Bell's sharp grounder while moving into the hole; with no play at first, he threw to third to force Montero.  Nicely done.

5.  Goldschmidt's HR was crushed, measuring 425' by the Padres PR staff.  it was what - 7 rows back in the LF upper deck?  Wow.

6.  Parra forced the balk by Thatcher by bluffing coming down the line at third to steal home.  Thatcher had started his wind-up, then froze.  Oops.  Parra had a huge game.

7.  Finally, we got to see the ML debut of Yasmani Grandal.  He hit a 3-1 pitch to the track in LF.  He was fooled on the pitch, and hit it off his front foot, so don't read' Warning Track Power' into that swing.  As a friend of mine said, 'he's got swagger'. Welcome to the big leagues Yasmani.

SD tries to win the series tomorrow afternoon.

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