Another tough loss in this series is not what the doctor ordered for this team. After taking 2 out of 3 against baseball’s best team, the Padres have turned around and lost the series to the Giants. It was a pitchers duel in San Francisco tonight as both teams were held scoreless until the 6th. The Padres threatened in the 5th, but Sean Hjelle, the Giants starter, shut them down to end the inning with 2 runners on.
After a sac fly, the game’s energy shifted after Yu Darvish was dominating the Giants lineup. A blocking violation on Gary Sanchez (which in my opinion was a bad call) that was overturned gave the Giants a 2-0 lead, and then the flood gates opened.
Bob Melvin was ejected from the game and then back to back singles by Mike Yastremski and JD Davis made it 4-0. A couple of runs in the 7th and 8th by Trent Grisham and Jake Cronenworth made it 4-2 going to the 9th. The Padres actually put the tying run to the plate in the 9th, with arguably their best hitter at the plate in Fernando Tatis Jr., but he lined out hard to the second baseman and ended the ball game.
Here are a couple takeaways from the game:
Discipline Remains an Issue
This team is still new, and while there is a good amount of turnover, there still needs to be integration. The chemistry just looks slightly off, and as if the Padres are not just passing the baton on to the next hitter throughout the lineup. One bad call derailed the energy and momentum of the game, which should never happen. Manny Machado has had a disappointing year this far, and averages across the board are down, except for Fernando Tatis Jr. I don’t believe this will last long though, as the Padres, talent wise, hold one of the best lineups in baseball. Their pitching staff has been good enough, but for a team that is looking up at 3 teams in the division, they need to be great in every aspect after the trade deadline, and I believe they will get it together offensively.
The Stars are Still Stars
Even after an 0-4 game tonight, Fernando Tatis Jr. has been amazing this year on both sides. He is hitting .286 with 15 home runs in only 54 games played since returning from suspension. His defense has been gold glove worthy as well, even saving the game against the Rays in the previous series. Juan Soto’s average is down, but his On-Base Percentage is still off the charts. He leads the league in walk percentage and seems to be on base every game. His power and contact will come around, but the fact that he is still getting on base bodes well. Even with Manny Machado not being himself at the plate, he was an MVP candidate just last year, and is known to get hot later in the year. Add that to a star studded pitching staff, and there is a lot of optimism. This is why you spend the big bucks.
The Padres will try to salvage a game in this series as they send Blake Snell to the mound to face Alex Wood for the Giants. The first pitch is set for 12:45 PM PST.