Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Coverage of the Padres

To all who have checked in and read the articles I've posted here on the San Diego Padres, I really appreciate it and I hope you enjoyed reading them. Unfortunately, I don't have a lot of time to keep up the site, I'm now the sports writer for the Frisco RoughRiders (AA affiliate of the Texas Rangers). You can find my interviews and player profiles coming up at www.rangers.scout.com.

In the meantime, for your coverage of the San Diego Padres during this 2008 season, check out my buddy Todd at www.planetpadres.blogspot.com. He does a great job with his coverage and I know you're going to enjoy reading his opinions and articles.

Thanks again to everyone who checked in here and I hope to post something on the Padres or their minor league system in the neat future.


Tuesday, April 8, 2008

Maddux goes 7 strong in win over Giants

Greg Maddux shook off a rough first inning and retired 19 of the last 20 batters he faced in his 7 innings of work in a 8-4 win over the San Francisco Giants in their home opener, giving up just 1 run on 3 hits, walking 2 and striking out five.

It was a different feel at the ballpark, a face Giants fans had gotten so used to in his tenure is no longer there and now see their team moving in a different direction. Barry Bonds was not in the Giants lineup, his face was gone from the left field wall, as was the home run counter towards right center field. A good thing for the Padres as Bonds seem to wear out Padre pitchers in the past, homering 8 times off last night's starter Greg Maddux.

Adrian Gonzalez had a big night for San Diego, going 4-5 with a HR, 2 RBI's and 4 runs scored. Khalil Greene went 2-3 with a triple and driving in 3, Jim Edmonds also had his best night thus far going 2-5 with a pair of RBI singles.

The Padres jumped on Giants' starter Matt Cain early, and often. In the 1st inning, Adrian Gonzalez hit his 2nd HR of the season, a 2-run shot to left center after a Tad Iguchi double. In the 3rd, Edmonds would single home Iguchi, Greene would follow with a sac fly that would score Adrian Gonzalez, then Kevin Kouzmanoff would score on a throwing error off the bat of Scott Hairston.

For the Giants, the only real bright spot was catcher Benjie Molina who went 2-4 with 3 RBI's. Starter Matt Cain really struggled in his 2nd start of the season, going 4 1/3 innings, giving up 5 runs (4 ER) on 7 hits, striking out 5 but he also walked 5 batters.

The 2 teams will face off again tonight at 7:15pm, Randy Wolf (0-0, 1.50 ERA) will go for San Diego. The Giants will go with young right-hander Tim Lincecum (1-0, 2.25 ERA).

Sunday, April 6, 2008

Padres drop 3-2 decision in series finale

The San Diego Padres had plenty of opportunities to put the Dodgers away, but the same problem this team had last year, came up to bite them again. In more than 3 innings, the Padres had runners in scoring position, but failed to bring them in.

Not only that, but Brian Giles was thrown out twice at the plate. The first time coming on a fielder's choice in the home half of the 1st inning, then again in the home half of the third. Both came off the bat of Tag Iguchi.

Starter Chris Young had his typical good outing for the Padres. Going 7 innings, giving up 2 runs on 5 hits, 3 walks and striking out eight. Only problem is, Dodgers starter Derek Lowe matched him, going 6 innings giving up 2 runs (1 ER) on 5 hits and striking out six. Both starters didn't factor in the decision since the game was tied at 2 after 7 innings.

In the 8th, Heath Bell worked his way out of trouble and the Padres handed the ball to Trevor Hoffman in the 9th. For the 2nd time in 4 appearances, Trevor couldn't hold a team at bay. Dodgers' catcher Russell Martin would open up with a leadoff single and would be sacrificed over to 2nd. Then Chin Lung-Hu would single, scoring Martin from 2nd and giving the Dodgers a 3-2 lead going into the bottom of the 9th, which was secured by closer Takashi Saito for his first save of the 2008 season.

The Padres will board a charter plane tonight bound for San Francisco for a 3-game set against the Giants. Greg Maddux, Randy Wolf and Justin Germano are all scheduled to pitch this week.

Saturday, April 5, 2008

Peavy dominates, Padres win

If there was a question about whether or not Jake Peavy could repeat his performance of 2007, he's answered it over his last 2 starts of the 2008 season.

Peavy's last 2 starts, he's combined for 16 IP, 5 H, 1 ER, good for a 0.56 ERA and improved to 10-1 in 19 career starts against the Los Angeles Dodgers after a 4-1 victory on Saturday. Peavy added a new pitch to his repertoire in the offseason, a changeup. Although he only used it a few times against the Astros in his first start, he mixed it in well against the Dodgers tonight.

Catcher Josh Bard, “He threw a couple on opening night, but I thought he did a really good job tonight. It gave him another pitch. Guys like Kent and Martin have seen his slider a lot, and it’s still the best slider in the game, but sometimes they’re cheating for it. We threw a little wrinkle in there. You can’t say enough.”

There was some controversy tonight, however. Padres' closer Trevor Hoffman had been warming up in the bullpen and was ready to go, but manager Bud Black decided to let Peavy go out and finish up his complete game. Jake said it was no disrespect to Hoffman, but more the confidence Black had in Jake.

Padres' pitcher Jake Peavy, “We have the best closer of all time down there, man. The guy’s as good as it gets. Division opponent, save situation. It’s tough to get back out there, but I appreciate Buddy showing the confidence in me. That’s absolutely no disrespect for No. 51. I just appreciate the confidence that Buddy showed in me. It was a good win for the boys. No doubt, we had to have it. Got to win this one to have a chance to come out tomorrow and win the series.”

Manager Bud Black, “We would have felt good either way. It was good to give the bullpen a day off and I think it was good that Jake felt good about his stuff. You combine all that and our decision after eight that he felt strong.”

The Padres will finish up the 3-game set against the Dodgers tomorrow afternoon from Petco Park. The Padres will have big 6'10" right-hander Chris Young on the mound while the Dodgers will counter with Derek Lowe. Game time is 1:05pm.

Friday, April 4, 2008

Series Preview: Padres v Dodgers

The Los Angeles Dodgers come to town tonight for the first of 3 games ending on Sunday afternoon.

In Game 1 tonight, scheduled to start at 7:05pm. Justin Germano will make his first start of 2008 for the San Diego Padres. For the Los Angeles Dodgers, they will counter with their Japanese right-hander Hiroki Kuroda who is not only making his first start for the Dodgers but in the big leagues in general.

On Saturday, a matchup a lot of people will be keeping their eyes on, the Padres will have ace Jake Peavy making his 2nd start of 2008 and will be opposite Brad Penny for the Dodgers. Both pitchers won their first start and neither allowed an earned run.

On Sunday afternoon, Chris Young will take the ball for the Padres while the Dodgers will have Derek Lowe on the hill. Game time for Sunday will be 1:05pm.

Series Recap: Padres win 3 of 4 from Houston

The San Diego Padres got their 2008 season off to a good start this week, winning 3 of their 4 games against the Houston Astros.

On Monday, Jake Peavy outpitched Astros' ace and close friend Roy Oswalt and got help offensively.

On Tuesday, Chris Young was unusually wild, but held it together enough to get the win in a 2-1 victory with Trevor Hoffman getting the first save of 2008.

On Wednesday, it looked like the Padres were well on their way to winning their 3rd straight, coming back from a 3-0 deficit and taking a 6-5 lead into the 9th inning. Trevor Hoffman came into the game, wasn't given a called 3rd strike to one batter, Adrian Gonzalez just missed a line drive that would have ended the game and Lance Berkman made the Padres pay for it. He hit a 2-out 3 run HR off Hoffman to give the Astros a 9-6 lead, Hoffman was pulled after that bat at bat. As you might imagine, the Hoffman haters were out in full force after that game, calling the talk shows with "Trevor is done," "why is Trevor still the closer."

One night later, on Thursday night, the Padres wrapped up the series with a 3-2 victory and guess who got the save. Trevor came right back out the next night and made up for it, going right through the 9th inning with ease and picking up his 2nd save of the season. Kevin Kouzmanoff also hit his first HR of the season, a 2-run shot in the 1st inning off Astros' starter Shawn Chacon. Scott Hairston also had a big game, coming up a HR shy of the cycle, going 3-3.

Tonight, the Dodgers come to town in a matchup a lot of people are talking about. Justin Germano will get the start for San Diego (3-1) while Japanese starter Hiroki Kuroda makes his first start as a Los Angeles Dodger (2-1).