Five Good Things : Battle By The Bay Edition
The Friars win streak ended at seven on Tuesday night despite their best effort to beat the Giants after blowing two late leads the final two games. Monday’s extra-inning win brought them amazingly within one game of first place in mid-June after starting the season 5-15.
Even though the Pads lost the final two of the three game set in San Francisco, there were many positive things to take from this series. Here are five.
Though the Norf went hitless on Wednesday, he was a combined 4-10 in the first two games and was a major contributor in game one, with three hits including an RBI double in the first to give the Padres a 1-0 lead in the third. He also scored twice, the tying run in the seventh on Chase Headley’s single and the final run in the 13th to put the Friars ahead, 5-3.
With Everth Cabrera going down with a hamstring injury and eventually to the disabled list, Padre newcomer Pedro Ciriaco stepped in nicely at shortstop with a three hit game Monday. Though he may not be as gifted in the field or on the base paths as Everth, he did go 4-8 with a walk in the two games he played this series.
3. Round Trippers
The Padres hit five home runs in the series, all coming in the last two losses. Tuesday saw big flies from Nick Hundley, Logan Forsythe and Jesus Guzman. Will Venable and Guzman each went deep on Wednesday to bring the team total to 72 in 72 games. That’s one a game for you boys and girls keeping score at home, tied for fourth best in the National League.
2. Jesus Guzman’s Passion
Guzi got in the heads of both the Giants and their fans when he clobbered a pitch by Jeremy Affeldt into the bleachers in left-center field on Tuesday night to give the Padres a 4-3 lead. As he ran to first he turned towards the Padres dugout and pumped both fists while yelling in excitement elated with his clutch pinch-hitting. This did not sit well with the Giants.
The next day Madison Bumgarner threw behind Guzman in the second inning and proceeded to shout “Let’s go, right now”, trying to incite a fight with Jesus, as both benches cleared. After all the dust settled nobody was ejected and Guzman flew out to the warning track.
He did get his revenge in the seventh with a solo jack of Bumgarner to give San Diego a 2-1 lead. Unfortunately for the Friars, the bullpen blew both leads resulting in losing both games and the series.
1. Greatest Catch in Padres History?
What Will Venable accomplished in the bottom of the 12th Monday night could arguable bear that title. With two outs and Brandon Belt on second base, the Padres outfield was shallow in case Juan Perez was to hit a grounder past the infield. Instead Perez launched a deep fly ball to center forcing Venable to retreat to the wall and make a backhanded full-extension diving catch with his back to home plate before sliding into the warning track. The catch was easily the top defensive play for the Friars in 2013 and maybe all of baseball, as it saved the game (Belt was sure to score) and allowed the Padres to win in the 13th, 5-3.
So let me know if you agree or disagree about Venable’s catch. Was it the greatest ever for a friar or not? Also if you are going to any of the games against the Dodgers the next four days, wear brown if you can and cheer on out boys.