<![CDATA[NBC 7 San Diego - San Diego Padres]]> Copyright 2015 http://www.nbcsandiego.com/feature/san-diego-padres http://media.nbcbayarea.com/designimages/KNSD+RSS+Feed+logo+blue.png NBC 7 San Diego http://www.nbcsandiego.com en-us Mon, 03 Aug 2015 22:48:52 -0700 Mon, 03 Aug 2015 22:48:52 -0700 NBC Owned Television Stations <![CDATA[Will Ferrell to Screen Baseball Movie at Petco Park]]> Mon, 03 Aug 2015 13:32:29 -0700 http://media.nbcsandiego.com/images/213*120/AP468324219163_FerrellPadres.jpg

Months after Will Ferrell donned a San Diego Padres uniform in a spring training stunt, the comedian's HBO special based off his experiences will be screened at Petco Park. 

In March, the comedian played all nine positions and coached for 10 teams in five Arizona ballparks in a spring-training blitz chronicled for the special.

The movie will be screened Sept. 5 immediately following the game between the Padres and the Los Angeles Dodgers as a part of Baseball Night in San Diego. All fans at the game will have the opportunity to stay and watch the screening. 

Ferrell will introduce the special, created by Funny or Die in partnership with Major League Baseball. The movie will debut on HBO at 10 p.m. on Sept. 12. 

The special is dedicated to the fight against cancer through the charity Cancer for College. Ferrell will also honor former professional baseball player Bert Campaneris. 

Fans can buy tickets for the game by clicking here.



Photo Credit: AP]]>
<![CDATA[Padres Comeback Falls Short]]> Sun, 02 Aug 2015 15:43:10 -0700 http://media.nbcsandiego.com/images/180*120/GettyImages-482783714.jpg

The Padres have made a habit of winning games with late-inning magic lately. Sunday afternoon in Miami they pulled another rabbit out of their hat, then watched as the Marlins used that strategy against them.

The Marlins got a 3-run, walkoff homer from shortstop Adeiny Hechavarria to win 5-2 and avoid getting swept out of their own building. The big blast came off Padres reliever Brandon Maurer, who walked two batters to set the table for Hechavarria.

Had it not been for another unlikely comeback, that situation would have never developed. Miami had a 2-0 lead in the 9th inning when catcher Derek Norris, who seems to be in the middle of every big rally lately, rapped a leadoff single. Two batters later shortstop Alexi Amarista, the most unlikely non-pitcher on the field to go deep, went deep to tie the game 2-2.

Amarista was oh-for-25 entering the game and only had five hits in the entire month of July. On Sunday he had a triple and a home run and get starter James Shields a no-decision.

Shields gave up two runs in the first inning but only allowed two baserunners over the next five innings. He was bested by Miami ace Jose Fernandez, who struck out 10 in 6.0 innings and has never lost at Marlins Park.

The Padres head to Milwaukee to start a 4-game set on Monday. The Brewers are 20-33 at Miller Park, giving them the worst home record in the Major Leagues. Tyson Ross gets the start against Wily Peralta.



Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Tony Gwynn Remembered in San Diego]]> Tue, 17 Jun 2014 15:27:10 -0700 http://media.nbcsandiego.com/images/213*120/Gwynn-Fans-4.jpg Legendary San Diego Padres baseball player Tony Gwynn was honored by fans after he died Monday morning.

Photo Credit: NBC 7 San Diego]]>
<![CDATA[Padres Season in Images]]> Wed, 06 Aug 2014 11:30:09 -0700 http://media.nbcsandiego.com/images/213*120/padres+pics+85+8.jpg Relive all the great moments from the San Diego Padres' 2014 season in photos.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Padres Win Again, Inch Towards Playoff Picture]]> Sat, 01 Aug 2015 20:19:55 -0700 http://media.nbcsandiego.com/images/180*120/GettyImages-482697374.jpg

The Padres beat the Marlins 5-3 on Saturday night in Miami. They followed a tried and true baseball formula: get a good start, have a big inning on offense, let the bullpen lock it up.

Odrisamer Despaigne had another solid outing, going 6.0 innings and allowing three runs to get the win. Shawn Kelley, Marc Rzepczynski, Joaquin Benoit and Craig Kimbrel made it stick, not allowing a baserunner in their combined three innings of work. Kimbrel earned his 31st save and still has yet to blow back-to-back saves in his Major League career.

On offense, the Padres big damage came in the third inning. Will Venable scored on a triple by Yangervis Solarte, who scored on a Matt Kemp sacrifice fly (Kemp also had two hits). Derek Norris capped the 4-run inning with a double just inside the 3rd base bag that brought home Justin Upton and Yonder Alonso, who took the extra base when Miami left fielder Derek Dietrich misplayed the ball along the left field wall.

The Padres have won three straight series on the road. That’s not bad for a team who only won three of its first 15 road series this season.

San Diego has won 12 of 16 games, running its record to 51-53. Conventional wisdom would suggest if they can get back to the .500 mark they can start to legitimately think about making a playoff run. That might happen by Monday, and if they make it happen, there’s no reason to think they can’t get in to the post-season because, finally, the schedule is being kind to the Friars.

San Diego’s next 17 games are against teams with losing records. Now, if they do get back in to against a bunch of teams that are not very good, there will be detractors out there who say they proved nothing by busting up the bottom-feeders. However, here’s a dirty little secret: every winning team does that. It’s how they become winning teams.

Submitted for your approval; the following schedule analysis. Let’s start with the Cubs. Chicago is 55-47, currently a game out of the final NL Wild Card spot. The Cubbies are 9-4 against the Reds (46-55) but 4-9 against the Cardinals (66-37). How about the Pirates (60-42), owners of the first NL Wild Card? Pittsburgh is 5-2 against the Phillies (40-64) but 4-6 against the Cubs.

The 56-46 Giants, owners of the final NL Wild Card spot, are the outlier. They’re 2-5 against the Marlins (42-61), and for some reason 9-3 against the first place Dodgers (59-45).

Speaking of L.A., they’re the poster kids for feasting on the weak. The Dodgers are 9-4 against the Rockies (43-58) and 9-3 against the Diamondbacks (50-51 after a 6-game winning streak). The only teams with winning records the Dodgers have a winning record against are the Angels (55-48), who they’ve beaten both times they’ve played so far, and the Nationals (54-47), who they took two of three games from.

Things are about to get very difficult for the NL West leaders. In August they still have series against the Pirates (60-42), Nationals, Astros (58-46), Cubs and Giants, with Pittsburgh and Houston coming on the road.

So if the Padres can do what all the other “winning” teams do over the next three weeks, they’ll be right in the thick of the post-season picture, and yes, they will have earned their spot in the hunt.



Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Padres Walk Away Winners]]> Fri, 31 Jul 2015 22:05:20 -0700 http://media.nbcsandiego.com/images/166*120/GettyImages-482585386.jpg

The Padres did not blow up their roster at the trade deadline. In fact, instead of a fire sale they added a player, getting left-handed reliever Marc Rzepczynski (pronounced zep-chin-ski) from the Indians for reserve outfielder Abraham Almonte. What would possess General Manager A.J. Preller to keep his club in one piece?

“We have a lot of players who are attractive to other clubs,” Preller told a group of media members in the dugout of Marlins Park in Miami on Friday night. “Ultimately we didn’t get the value we wanted to get to. We like our team.”

Yeah, but that team has a losing record and is a long way out of the playoff hunt.  Assuming they can even get to .500, they still have a lot of ground to make up. Preller says it’s not out of the question.

“We’ve got a big challenge in front of us. I feel like we have the pitching and players here to start making up some ground.”

With the way the Padres have been playing lately, Preller might be on to something. The Friars won again in a unique way, this time beating the Marlins 8-3 in 11 innings. San Diego has now won 11 of their last 15 games.

It could have been a lot easier than it was. Closer Craig Kimbrel, the subject of intense trade speculation, blew his second save of the season when he left a fastball up and Miami infielder Derek Dietrich ripped it in to the upper deck to tie the game 3-3. Interesting stat on Dietrich: he has six home runs but only eight runs batted in this year. All but one of those RBI has come via the home run.

It also gave starting pitcher Ian Kennedy a no-decision. Kennedy was the subject of trade rumors but was not going to be on the mound for a different reason. He wife went in to labor with the couple's fourth child so Ian booked a flight back to San Diego to be there for it. Bad weather delayed the flight and when it was clear Kennedy would not make it home in time he called pitching coach Darren Balsley to see if he could come back to the ballpark and pitch.

Ian watched the birth using FaceTime (Evelyn Nicole Kennedy was born at 2:03 p.m. San Diego time) then took the mound two hours later and made one of his best starts of the season, throwing 7.0 innings and giving up just two runs. Kennedy will try to fly home again Saturday morning and re-join the team next week in Milwaukee.

But, he stuck around to see one heck of a finish. In the 11th inning, the Padres came up with a way to win a game. It was not as dramatic as Thursday’s rain-delayed comeback over the Mets, but it was just as unique. After a Will Venable single Marlins reliever A.J. Ramos, who had only walked 14 hitters in 46 innings this season, walked Matt Kemp, Justin Upton and Yonder Alonso one after another to force home the game-winning run.

After a pitching change Derek Norris drew another walk to inflate the Padres lead to 5-3. Then Jedd Gyorko looped a 2-run single to left and Venable singled to score another run and erase any thoughts of a Marlins comeback.

Since the San Francisco Giants also lost on Friday the Padres, at 50-53, are a mere 6.5 games out of the second NL Wild Card spot. Their next 18 games are against teams that have records worse than they do. Maybe Preller was right in holding his ground. This thing just might work out after all.



Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[GM A.J. Preller Keeps Padres Together]]> Fri, 31 Jul 2015 14:30:28 -0700 http://media.nbcsandiego.com/images/213*120/preller+1.jpg

There are MLB expert analysts who thought this week would turn the Padres into ancient Rome: All trade roads would lead to San Diego. Given the off-season spree that General Manager A.J. Preller went on, that thinking was certainly not unfounded.

But all the speculation fizzled in to a giant "meh." The Major League Baseball trade deadline passes at 1 p.m. Pacific time on Friday and, despite having multiple pieces to deal, the only move Preller pulled the trigger on was sending reserve outfielder Abraham Almonte to the Indians for left-handed relief pitcher Marc Rzepczynski, who has a lot of strikeouts in a small sample size this season.

At times over the last seven days, the Friars were rumored to be in talks to trade OF Justin Upton, RHP Craig Kimbrel, RHP Tyson Ross, RHP James Shields, RHP Andrew Cashner, RHP Joaquin Benoit, RHP Ian Kennedy, 2B Jedd Gyorko and OF Will Venable. The only guy on that list to leave the team is Kennedy, but that's so he can be with his wife as she delivers their fourth child. On a related note, Odrisamer Despaigne will make Kennedy's scheduled start on Friday night in Miami.

Of course, the lack of a blockbuster deal does not mean the Padres will not make a deal. They have the month of August to swing a waiver-wire deal, which is more complicated but not at all uncommon.

So, for the time-being at least, the Padres are who the Padres are. Perhaps Preller has seen enough during their recent hot streak (10 wins in 14 games) to think the season is not lost and they can make up the 7.5 games between themselves and a Wild Card spot. Or maybe he just did not think any of the offers made would get enough of a return on his investments.

Whatever the reasoning, the rookie GM is once again the talk of baseball. This time, though, it's for what he did NOT do instead of what he did.



Photo Credit: Matthew Wood/NBC7]]>
<![CDATA[Rain Men: Padres Complete Wet and Wild Comeback]]> Thu, 30 Jul 2015 17:24:59 -0700 http://media.nbcsandiego.com/images/180*120/GettyImages-482395478.jpg

The Padres were faced with a deficit, a deluge and a delay on Thursday in New York. They overcame them all to take a series from a playoff contender and, perhaps, buy themselves a little more time as the trade deadline nears.

The Friars beat the Mets 8-7 to take two of three games at Citi Field. After six innings San Diego trailed 7-1. Starter Andrew Cashner, who has been the subject of trade talks with his home town Houston Astros, gave up seven runs (five earned) in 5.1 innings. It looked like the Padres were going to turn in another uninspired offensive performance.

Then the 7th inning happened.

The Padres loaded the bases on two hits and a walk, setting up catcher Derek Norris for some drama. Norris, who had not driven in a run since June 28, hammered a Hansel Robles pitch to left field for a grand slam that cut the Mets lead to 7-5. Norris went 5-for-5 on the day.

In the 9th inning Mets closer Jeurys Familia got the first two outs when a the skies unleashed a downpour that forced the officiating crew to stop play. After a 44 minute delay Familia went back out to try and finish what he started.

He was not the same pitcher. Norris and outfielder Matt Kemp both hit two-out singles, setting up outfielder Justin Upton to play the hero. Upton ripped a 3-run home run to right-center field, his team-leading 18th of the season, to put the Padres on top 8-7.

After another rain delay, this one nearly three hours long, Craig Kimbrel worked a perfect 9th inning to earn his 30th save of the season. Having won 10 of their last 14 games, the Padres are suddenly just four games under .500 and moving back in to playoff contention. It may be too late, however, to give General Manager A.J. Preller enough of a reason not to make a few deals before Friday's MLB trade deadline.

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<![CDATA[Padres Win Again As Trade Deadline Looms]]> Sun, 26 Jul 2015 16:55:57 -0700 http://media.nbcsandiego.com/images/175*120/GettyImages-482082646.jpg

The Padres beat the Marlins 3-2 on Sunday afternoon at Petco Park, taking three of four from Miami and, perhaps, giving the team a chance to keep the circling vultures from picking apart their roster.

The Friars are once again the subject of trade rumors and their recent hot streak suggests they might be able to keep the roster intact, something the guys in the clubhouse would really like to do.

"As much as anything," said outfielder Will Venable, one of the names being brought up in trade talks. "Obviously upstairs they're going to make what decisions they need to make. All we can control is going to New York and trying to change their mind with a few good games."

That seems like the view in the clubhouse is the front office is in a selling state of mind. But after a 6-3 home stand there is still hope. At least, the Friars hope there's still hope.

"Whether it's a naive thought or not," said Venable, "that's what the plan is. I know that's what we all want to do."

Although they still have issues scoring runs the Padres have played much better baseball, especially on defense, the last few weeks. They've crept back to withing striking distance of a Wild Card spot, making the decisions on whether or not to allow this team in its current form to stay together a whole lot more difficult.

Sunday's game was more of the same formula they've used recently. Get a good start (this one from Odrisamer Despaigne, who went 6.0 innings allowing one run on two hits), score just enough runs to take a small lead and let the bullpen lock it down.

Joaquin Benoit and Craig Kimbrel, two more guys who seem to be on the trade block, both threw for the third straight game. Kimbrel notched his 29th save of the season with help from a fantastic catch by Venable in centerfield.

Outfielder Justin Upton, perhaps the most likely player to be traded by Friday's deadline, hit a laser in to the left-centerfield seats off former Padre Mat Latos to get the scoring started, his team-leading 16th home run. The question on Padres fans minds now is will be be his last home run in a San Diego uniform?

One of the teams rumored to be hot on Upton's trail is the Mets, the team the Padres start a 3-game series with on Tuesday night at Citi Field.



Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Padres Trade Primer: Who Will Stay, Who Will Go]]> Sun, 26 Jul 2015 15:19:57 -0700 http://media.nbcsandiego.com/images/180*120/GettyImages-480685990.jpg

Padres General Manager A.J. Preller is going to have an awfully busy week. The MLB trade deadline looms on Friday, July 31, and he has some personnel decisions to make.

On Sunday afternoon at Petco Park I heard a couple of scouts from opposing teams having a discussion in the Press Box. One said his team needs an 8th-inning guy and of all the ones he’s seen Joaquin Benoit is the best available so they (I’ll keep the team a secret) will likely make a play for the Padres setup man. But Benoit is far from the only player who could be pried out of San Diego.

This season other MLB teams are looking at the Padres like they’re Costco; you can probably find anything you need there, and you might walk in looking for one thing but leave with a whole lot more.

There are very few, if any, players who Preller will not at least entertain offers for. So let’s take a look at the ENTIRE San Diego Padres 25-man roster and see who’s likely to go and who’s likely to stay (this is the MLB roster as of Sunday, July 26):

RHP James Shields

He’s an intriguing dilemma. Shields wants to stay in San Diego and the club controls his salary through 2019. However, he jumps from making $10 million this year to pulling in $21 million in 2016. That’s a hefty increase and one the Padres might like to get out of. Shields is proving to be as durable as ever and could be that last missing piece for a team making a post-season push, so if someone wants him badly enough they could make an offer the Padres cannot refuse.

Trade Likelihood
: 40%. Preller would move Shields, but the return is going to have to be awfully big.

RHP Tyson Ross

One of the guys Preller considers the core of the team, Ross is getting a lot of attention. However, he’s been one of the most consistent starters on the club and has two years of arbitration left so there’s certainly no rush to let him leave.

Trade Likelihood
: 2%. It would take a prospect haul of Jeff Bagwellian proportions to get Preller to give up Ross.

RHP Andrew Cashner

Cash is a bit of an enigma. He has the stuff of a front-of-the-rotation starter but this year has not consistently pitched like one. Off-the-field issues like worrying about his mother’s health could very well be contributing to it, and it’s easy to understand why. Cashner has one year of arbitration left so if a team in need of a 4th starter offers up a decent return he could be playing elsewhere by August.

Trade Likelihood: 50-50. The chance to add an electric arm like this might be too much for a contender to pass up.

RHP Ian Kennedy

Kennedy has fought inconsistency as well but of late. He has not allowed more than three earned runs in any of his last eight starts and only coughed up one earned run in five of those outings. Kennedy is a free agent at the end of the year and that typically (with the Padres, at least) increases the desire to trade a man and get something more than a draft pick in return.

Trade Likelihood
: 75%. Kennedy is a veteran arm who can help a team looking for a 4th starter for the stretch run.

RHP Odrisamer Despaigne

He’s durable with the potential for brilliant starts but suffers from fits of inconsistency. You really never know which OD you’re going to get and a team in a pennant race can’t rely on that.

Trade Likelihood: 1%. Unless it’s one of those seemingly insignificant deals between teams out of contention who just like someone else’s guy because, Despaigne is not going anywhere.

RHP Craig Kimbrel

Everybody needs a closer, or at least thinks they do. But the Blue Jays REALLY need a closer. Toronto’s bullpen has blown 16 of 31 save chances this year. They have one of the top five lineups in baseball but can’t hold a lead. Kimbrel changes all that. Plus, it’s being reported that the Padres have been scouting the Blue Jays system awfully hard lately, so if Toronto is willing to give up what Preller wants (and he NEEDS to get at the very least what he gave up to get Kimbrel out of Atlanta) the hard-throwing right-hander will need to keep his passport handy.

Trade Likelihood
: 98%. The Jays are three games out of a Wild Card spot. Solving their bullpen issues puts them in the playoffs so you have a motivated buyer here.

RHP Joaquin Benoit

Another veteran who will get an awful lot of attention, likely from the Blue Jays as well. Benoit has been effective for his entire career and offers the flexibility to setup or close. As previously mentioned there is certainly a market for Benoit so Preller will have to see what he can get. Kimbrel’s situation will also have an impact here.

Trade Likelihood: 50-50. There’s no rush to move Benoit but if he can bring in some prospects it’s worth looking in to.

RHP Brandon Maurer

He’s been arguably the Padres best reliever in 2015. Maurer has the stuff to handle the 7th, 8th or 9th innings and he’s under team control for another year. He’s the kind of guy you simply do not let go of at this stage of his career.

Trade Likelihood
: Don’t even bother asking.

RHP Shawn Kelley

The start of his season was a Hindenburg-level disaster. However, in his last 25.1 innings Kelley has allowed just three runs with 30 strikeouts. He’s throwing the ball extremely well and could add bullpen depth to a team looking for help in the middle innings.

Trade Likelihood: 35%. If a team calls asking about him, the pending free agent could be had. The question is how many teams will call about him instead of the variety of other bullpen arms on the market?

RHPs Dale Thayer, Marcos Mateo, Kevin Quackenbush

I put all of these guys in one line because they’re all basically in the same situation. No teams are going to target them but they could all be throw-ins with a deal for another guy.

Trade Likelihood: 25%. Don’t count on it but don’t rule it out either.

OF Justin Upton

Upton is an All-Star hitter who has a history of heating up down the stretch and provides a dangerous power option in the middle of a lineup. He’s a free agent at the end of the year that could very well get a $200 million deal, which prices him out of San Diego. If the Padres don’t trade Upton they’ll get a draft pick. Plenty of teams need a guy like Upton and they know the situation the Padres are in, which will make trade talks very interesting.

Trade Likelihood: I hope his lease is month-to-month. At the last-minute some team will panic and pull the trigger to add a guy who might help them win a World Series title this year.

OF Matt Kemp

1)    Leader of the Padres clubhouse.
2)    Big contract.
3)    With another big 2nd half he’s proving he can still hit and build around.

Trade Likelihood: 0%. This is just not a possibility.

OF Will Venable

Will has quietly had a very nice season. He provides high-quality defense at all three outfield spots and has become a reliable left-handed bat from either the starting lineup or off the bench. There will be discussions about Venable and a team that needs a solid veteran as a 4th outfielder could do a whole lot worse than this guy.

Trade Likelihood: 65%. That number goes up is someone on a contending team gets hurt. Basically, think of Venable as Maverick being ready to launch on Alert-5.

OF Melvin Upton

It’s a miracle the Padres were able to take his contract off the Braves’ hands. Nobody else is going to do the same thing.

Trade Likelihood: -100%. There’s a better chance Pete Rose is inducted to the Hall of Fame next year than there is of Upton getting traded this week.

OF Abraham Almonte

I had honestly forgotten he was with the big club. Odds are most other teams around baseball had forgotten that, too. If he moves it would be another throw-in situation.

Trade Likelihood: 3%.

1B Yonder Alonso

At the age of 28 and six years in to a big league career it’s safe to say Alonso is not going to develop the kind of power people thought he would when he was a younger prospect. Yonder is still able to get on base and will drive in the occasional run but when (if) Wil Myers gets healthy he will likely be a better option at first base. At this stage of the season teams are not looking for light-hitting corner infielders.

Trade Likelihood: 0%. Alonso is not the kind of difference maker you swing a deal for in a pennant race.

2B Jedd Gyorko

Jedd has a big contract that’s not being lived up to. Preller might be looking to move Gyorko but nobody is looking to add him.

Trade Likelihood: Not a snowball’s chance in ……

SS Alexi Amarista

Alexi has been out of his natural position at short and done as good a job as he’s capable of. However, if he can go back to his role of utility infielder his value jumps dramatically. It’s not likely but a team looking for infield depth could kick the tires on Amarista in one of those “under the radar” kind of moves.

Trade Likelihood: 5%. If Preller is able to get a shortstop in another deal he could move Amarista but it’s more likely he stays on to be the swing infielder again.

3B Yangervis Solarte

Similar to Alonso, Yan is a nice player but not a guy who pushes a team over the top. Unlike Alonso, Solarte is only in his second MLB season so there is still upside to consider (even though they’re the same age).

Trade Likelihood: 10%. Again, not likely but not altogether out of the question.

SS Clint Barmes

Here’s a veteran who has played very well when given a chance this year. Barmes is the kind of guy teams covet in the stretch run because he’s solid, good in the clubhouse and has been around the block a few times. Expect a few teams to come calling about him.

Trade Likelihood: 70%. I have no idea why but my gut tells me Barmes is going to be that final piece to the puzzle for a team trying to make the playoffs.

1B Brett Wallace

Left-handed pinch-hit specialist. Everybody needs one of those at some point. But, odds are this is not the one they’ll go after.

Trade Likelihood: 0.5%. This would be a head-scratcher unless he’s added to a deal as a bonus.

C Derek Norris

What a drop-off Norris has had in 2015. He has not driven in a run since June 28, a span of 62 at-bats. Norris has gone from the All-Star conversation to being the guy who’s blocking Austin Hedges’ development. Still, when he’s good Norris is really good and he could very well be playing through an undisclosed injury.

Trade Likelihood: 1%. Preller would have to be blown away by an offer to part with Norris.

C Austin Hedges

He has proven beyond the shadow of a doubt he can handle himself in the majors defensively. He’s also hit for more power than expected and he’s done it with sporadic playing time. Hedges is still one of the top prospects in all of baseball. He’s the kind of guy a team gets in a trade when that team is looking to the future. Since the Padres are looking to the future they’re not going to deal Hedges now.

Trade Likelihood: Nope, no way, nah-uh. Not gonna happen.

OK, I think that’s it. Which players do you want to keep? Which do you want to see go? Let us know in the comments.

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<![CDATA[Padres Have A Winning Homestand]]> Sat, 25 Jul 2015 23:12:08 -0700 http://media.nbcsandiego.com/images/173*120/GettyImages-481976900.jpg

It has not happened very often this year, so let's enjoy it while we can. The Padres beat the Marlins 3-1 on Saturday night at Petco Park. It's their fifth win of their second half-opening, 10-game homestand and since one of the games was rained out, that means the Friars have already guaranteed a winning run at home!

Ian Kennedy made his second straight solid start. Kennedy threw 6.0 innings, striking out seven and allowing one run. He also scored what turned out to be the game-winning run in the second inning. After a 2-out double (of the Padres eight hits, the only one for extra bases came courtesy of the pitcher) Kennedy scored on a single by Will Venable to put the Friars up 2-0.

This could be an interesting week for Kennedy. His next scheduled start would come on Friday, July 31. That day is also the MLB trade deadline and Ian has been rumored in a few different trade scenarios. That is also the day his wife is due to deliver their fourth child.

So, things could get VERY interesting for at least one Padre who might once again become a Padre but do it while not in a Padres uniform.

San Diego closer Criag Kimbrel tossed a perfect 9th inning for his 28th save of the season (in 29 chances). He's another guy who is expected to draw attention as the trade deadline draws near.

The Padres can win the series from the Marlins on Sunday afternoon at Petco. Odrisamer Despainge gets the start against former Padre Mat Latos.



Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Padres Shut Out (Again)]]> Thu, 23 Jul 2015 22:47:56 -0700 http://media.nbcsandiego.com/images/166*120/GettyImages-481719336.jpg

One of the reasons Bud Black was fired is the team was underachieving, especially on offense. Pat Murphy was brought in on an interim basis to try and light a fire under the team's collective behind.

That decision has not worked out too well. The Padres were shut out again on Thursday night, this time losing 4-0 to the Miami Marlins. San Diego's offense mustered a mere three hits, all of them singles, in their latest uninspired setback.

Marlins starter Tom Koehler struck out seven Padres in 7.0 innings, but he also walked four batters, giving the Padres multiple chances to get a run on the board. As has become their calling card for yet another season, the Friars could not take advantage of the opportunities.

Padres starter Tyson Ross was even more dominant than Koehler ... until the 6th inning. Ross had thrown 5.2 innings with eight strikeouts, only allowing three infield singles, when the proverbial wheels fell off. After a pair of 2-out singles, Ross unleashed a wild pitch that brought in Martin Prado to put Miami up 1-0. Three more singles followed and Ross was gone, saddled with another loss in a game he looked destined to win.

That brings me back to the managerial change. Under Black, the Padres were one game under .500 while averaging 4.05 runs per game. Since he was fired, the Padres are seven games under .500 and averaging 3.56 runs per game.

You can interpret that any way you see fit.



Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Giants Stomp Padres at Petco Park]]> Wed, 22 Jul 2015 17:27:43 -0700 http://media.nbcsandiego.com/images/213*120/GettyImages-481602276.jpg

Brandon Belt hit a tying solo home run in the sixth inning and Buster Posey hit a go-ahead, two-run double in the seventh to lead the San Francisco Giants to a 7-1 victory over the San Diego Padres on Wednesday.

Matt Cain pitched six strong innings in his fourth start of the season for the defending World Series champions, who took two of three and have won eight of nine overall.

Padres ace James Shields left with a 1-0 lead after throwing 96 pitches in five innings, and the bullpen promptly gave up the lead.

Belt homered into the sandy play area beyond the fence in right-center on a 3-2 pitch from Marcus Mateo with two outs in the sixth. It was Belt's 10th.

Brandon Maurer (6-3) came on for the seventh and allowed Angel Pagan's one-out single before getting Joe Panik to ground to first. He walked Matt Duffy, who checked his swing on a 3-2 pitch, before Posey doubled to right, with the ball landing just in front of a diving Matt Kemp to give the Giants a 3-1 lead. Hunter Pence singled to right-center to bring in Posey.

The Giants piled on with three more runs against Dale Thayer in the eighth. Brandon Crawford hit a leadoff homer into the Jack Daniels' party deck atop the right field wall, his 14th. Justin Maxwell had a pinch-hit RBI single and Duffy had an RBI base hit.

Cain (2-1) allowed one run and five hits in six innings, with six strikeouts and one walk. He was making his fourth start of the season. He had elbow surgery in 2014 and had been sidelined this season with a strained flexor tendon.

Shields, coming off his first victory since June 3, held the Giants to three hits in five scoreless innings while striking out seven and walking three.

Jedd Gyorko homered off Cain leading off the second inning, his fifth.

TRAINER'S ROOM

Giants: LHP Jeremy Affeldt, sidelined since June 16 with a strained left shoulder, was activated from the 15-day DL. He faced two batters in the eighth, allowing a single and a walk. To make room, LHP Josh Osich was optioned to Triple-A Sacramento.

UP NEXT

Giants: RHP Jake Peavy (1-4, 4.94 ERA) is scheduled to start when San Francisco opens a three-game home series against Oakland. The A's will counter with RHP Jesse Chavez (5-9, 3.21).

Padres: RHP Tyson Ross (6-7, 3.38) is scheduled to start the opener of a four-game series against Miami. The Marlins counter with RHP Tom Koehler (7-6, 3.38).
 



Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Now It's Serious: Padres Win Again]]> Mon, 20 Jul 2015 22:41:51 -0700 http://media.nbcsandiego.com/images/181*120/GettyImages-481450198.jpg

Matt Kemp has "that look."

Something happens to the man in the second half of baseball seasons. For whatever reasons, his slugging percentage after the All-Star Break jumps about 40 points. He starts hitting home runs more often (one every 20 at-bats as opposed to one every 25 at-bats pre-All-Star Break).

It's almost like when a basketball player starts to feel it. When Kyrie Irving gets in to one of those scoring zones where, no matter how you try to defend him, he's going to get the ball in the bucket. He just LOOKS dangerous.

Right now Matt Kemp just LOOKS dangerous. On Monday night against the Giants Kemp continued his crazy hot streak at the plate, a string that actually started just before the Midsummer Classic (but after the mathematical midway point of 81 games, so we'll count it).

The Padres right fielder had a pair of hits, including a 2-run home run to the Petco Park beach in right-center, to help the Friars to a 4-2 win over the Giants. San Diego has won a season-high five straight games.

Kemp now has an eight game hitting streak. In those eight games he's hit four home runs and driven in 10. He got help in the lineup from Yangervis Solarte, who had three hits and scored a run, and Melvin Upton Jr., who laced a triple to right-center field and scored on one of Solarte's singles in the 6th inning.

Padres starter Ian Kennedy turned in one of his better outings of the year. Kennedy went 6.0 innings with six strikeouts and one walk. Brandon Maurer, Joaquin Benoit and Craig Kimbrel retired nine of the 10 batters they faced to lock down the win. Kimbrel earned his 26th save, needing just four pitches to do it.

What's even more impressive is the Giants were the hottest team in the National League when they arrived at Petco Park. San Francisco had won six straight games. The Padres can get their sixth straight win on Tuesday night. Odrisamer Despaigne will go for the Friars against Chris Heston.



Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Padres Rained Out At Home]]> Mon, 20 Jul 2015 06:44:04 -0700 http://media.nbcsandiego.com/images/160*120/rain+petco+1.JPG

San Diego's Wet and Wild Summer continued on Sunday. This time the July rainstorms did something that has not happened since ... well, ever.

For the first time since the Padres started playing baseball in San Diego, they had a home game rained out in July. Sunday afternoon's weather stopped the scheduled game between the Padres and Rockies in the top of the 5th inning (Colorado was leading 1-0).

The game will be replayed on September 10 with a 12:40 p.m. start time. Folks who had tickets for Sunday's will have those seats honored in the replay.

After a delay of two and a half hours, and with more wet weather in the forecast, the crew at Petco Park decided to call it a day. The last rainout at Petco Park came on April 4 of 2006, a span of 820 home games.

This series we saw the first time a game in our town has ever even been DELAYED by weather in the month of July. The only other July delay in San Diego history came in 2009 and that was because of a swarm of bees.

Sunday's home rainout is just the 17th in Padres history. Keep in mind, they've played baseball since 1969. That's the same number as Dodger Stadium has had in its 53-year existence.

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<![CDATA[Padres Win With Big Hits From Unlikely Places]]> Sat, 18 Jul 2015 20:49:02 -0700 http://media.nbcsandiego.com/images/160*182/GettyImages-481281076.jpg

I could get used to this.

The Padres, who have not been able to string wins together all season long, have finally figured out how to do it. The Friars beat the Rockies 5-4 on Friday night at Petco Park. The Pads have won four straight games for just the second time all season and all of a sudden, at 43-49 with a string of games against sub-.500 opponents ahead of them, climbing back to at least respectability doesn’t seem like such a daunting task.

The Padres got something that has eluded them for most of the season: timely hitting. In the 6th inning, Matt Kemp had a couple of runners on with two outs so he decided to continue his recent hot streak. Kemp lashed a 2-run double to centerfield to break a 1-1 tie.

Starting pitcher Tyson Ross was trying to protect the lead when he ran in to trouble in the 7th inning. Brandon Barnes tripled home a run to chase Ross, who left still in line for the win. Brandon Maurer, who’s been fantastic in the bullpen this year, had a rare hiccup, allowing a double to the pinch-hitting Wilin Rosario that tied it up at 3-3.

Ross threw 102 pitches and finished with a no-decision. Maurer threw 12 pitches and got the win because in the bottom of the 7th, Rockies reliever Christian Friedrich issued a leadoff walk to Melvin Upton Jr. then served up a 2-run home run to former Rockie Clint Barmes. Two of Clint’s three home runs this season have come against his old mates.

Actually, it might be a bad idea to let Barmes go then play against him. Clint used to play in Colorado, Houston and Pittsburgh. Against the Rockies, Astros and Pirates this year Barmes is batting .407 and recorded four of his 10 RBI.

Closer Craig Kimbrel, who has struggled with the highest earned run average of his career this year, found a bit of his old magic, striking out the side in the 9th for his 25th save of the season.

Another bright spot for the Padres was rookie catcher Austin Hedges. Not only did he throw out both baserunners who tried to steal on him (Barnes both times), but Hedges also hit a solo home run in the 3rd inning to get the scoring started.

The Friars can earn their first 5-game winning streak of the year, and first series sweep since May 1-3 (also against the Rockies) on Sunday afternoon. Andrew Cashner gets the start against Eddie Butler.



Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Padres Have A Winning Streak!]]> Fri, 17 Jul 2015 23:12:47 -0700 http://media.nbcsandiego.com/images/173*120/GettyImages-481156266.jpg

When last we left the San Diego Padres, they had won two straight games in Texas to finish out the traditional first half of the season. On Friday night, back from the All-Star break, the Friars were hosting the Colorado Rockies.

We don't get to say this often, so we'll go ahead and take the chance ... the Padres have not lost in a week!

The Padres beat the Rockies 4-2 for their 3rd straight win. That definitely qualifies as a winning streak for this season. Matt Kemp and Jedd Gyorko both hit home runs in the first inning off Colorado starter Jorge De La Rosa. Kemp's was a solo shot and Gyorko's a 2-run job.

Both players struggled early in the year but have been swinging the bat markedly better of late. Kemp is hitting .361 over the last two weeks and Gyorko is at .300 for the month of July. Both of them figure to be around for the long haul.

However, several guys who helped in this one might not be around very much longer. Starting pitcher James Shields threw 5.0 innings and allowed one run to get the win. It's his first victory since June 3. Joaquin Benoit threw a perfect 8th inning with a pair of strikeouts. Justin Upton hit a monster solo homer in the 8th to give the Padres their fourth and final run. Craig Kimbrel tossed a perfect 9th inning to get his 24th save of the year.

All of those guys (and probably a few more like outfielder Will Venable) will be the subject of trade talks right up until the July 31 deadline. How the Padres play in the 13 games leading up to it will determine whether or not general manager A.J. Preller keeps his great off-season experiment together or blows it up and starts fresh again.



Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Another Commissioner Mishap With The Padres]]> Fri, 17 Jul 2015 20:45:15 -0700 http://media.nbcsandiego.com/images/178*120/GettyImages-479963850.jpg

Major League Baseball commissioners are not faring well with Padres fans these days.

First we had the fallout from the naming of a section of Petco Park "Selig Hall of Fame Plaza." Putting the name of anyone not named Tony Gwynn on the name of the franchise's Hall of Fame Plaza is bad enough.

Making it the name of a man who rarely showed any interest in San Diego during his time as commissioner in what was taken as a transparent attempt to get the MLB All-Star Game before he left office rubbed most baseball followers in San Diego the wrong way.

Rob Manfred's first appearance in front of Padres fans did not go well, either. On Friday the new commissioner was in town to help unveil the logo for the 2016 All-Star Game that will be held at Petco Park. Listen closely to the video and see if you can spot where he messed up.

Now, I'm not a professional sports commissioner, but I'm going to assume it's a good idea for someone in that position to know the name of the stadium he or she is standing in and praising.



Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Padres Get Rare Road Series Win]]> Sun, 12 Jul 2015 15:45:45 -0700 http://media.nbcsandiego.com/images/182*120/GettyImages-480514054.jpg

The Padres still have a lot of work to do on their offense during the All-Star break, but for now it seems their pitching is back to where we all expected it to be (well, aside from Ian Kennedy).

Tyson Ross continued a string of strong performances from the Friars staff, throwing 6.2 scoreless innings with six whiffs to pace a 2-1 Padres win on Sunday afternoon in Texas. San Diego hits the annual midseason break on a 2-game winning streak.

Despite his great effort Ross was almost saddled with a no-decision. Craig Kimbrel was brought in for a rare 4-out save and, although he made things a little more exciting than Padres fans would have liked, allowing a run in the 9th and letting the tying run reach 2nd base, Kimbrel punched out Leonys Martin to secure the win and his 23rd save of the season.

The Padres took two of three from the Rangers, giving them their first series win on the road since June 5-7 in Cincinnati.

The staff had to be good because the Padres only scored twice again. One run came on pure hustle, when Will Middlebrooks hit a grounder to second and Will Venable beat out a throw to the plate. Jedd Gyorko brought in the other run with an RBI single. It was a better result, but still a nasty trend for the San Diego hitters.

On their 10-game road trip they scored 5, 2, 1, 1, 1, 2, 2, 3, 6 and 2 runs. It's amazing they won four of those games and a waste of an opportunity when their pitching staff gave up 3, 1, 2, 3, 2, 3, 5, 4, 5 and 1 run.

Just like it's been all year, the Padres just can't seem to get everything working at once for a prolonged period. If they pitch well, they can't hit. If they hit well, they can't pitch. They're 41-49 at the season's traditional mid-way point. When they hit the field on Friday against the Rockies at Petco Park, they'll start a stretch of winnable games.

In fact, of their next 32 games the Padres only play six against teams with a winning record (three at home against the Giants and three on the road against the Mets). For a team that's played one of the most difficult schedules in the Majors, it will be a stretch where they either get themselves back in to the playoff hunt ... or start selling off pieces and looking to next year (again).



Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Late Heroics Snap Padres Losing Streak]]> Sat, 11 Jul 2015 21:56:55 -0700 http://media.nbcsandiego.com/images/169*120/GettyImages-480459808.jpg

James Shields was not very good (by his standards). The offense was struggling again (well, kind of normal by their standards). Really nothing was going well for the Padres, who were well on their way to a 7th straight loss in Arlington, TX, on Saturday night.

Then the 9th inning started.

The Padres got half of their runs and hits in the final frame to stage a 6-5 comeback win over the Rangers. After Shields allowed four runs in 5.1 innings and was in line to take the loss because the Friars only mustered three runs on five hits while he was in the game.

Two of those runs came on a Matt Kemp home run, another on a Justin Upton RBI single. But the 9th started with the Rangers up 5-3. Shawn Tolleson came on to close it for Texas, and suddenly San Diego's bats got going.

With one out, Will Venable reached on a bunt single and moved to third base on a Brett Wallace single. Venable scored when Melvin Upton singled, but Andrew Cashner (who was pinch-running for Wallace) got thrown out trying to reach third base. That meant the Padres had a runner on first with two outs instead of the tying run in scoring position with one out.

Yangervis Solarte did not care. he ripped a 2-run shot to right field to spark a raucous dugout celebration. Craig Kimbrel worked a 1-2-3 inning to get the save and put the Padres in the position to finally win a series on the road, something they have not done since June 5-7 when they took two of three in Cincinnati.

Tyson Ross gets the start against Yovani Gallardo.



Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Tempy, Benito Named to Pads' Hall of Fame]]> Fri, 10 Jul 2015 11:19:26 -0700 http://media.nbcsandiego.com/images/178*120/pod.jpg

The San Diego Padres announced two new franchise Hall of Famers: Gary Templeton and Benito Santiago.

As a rookie in 1987, Benito set a franchise record 34-game hitting streak. It’s still the longest in Major League history for a rookie and the longest ever by a catcher.

He won three Gold Gloves and four Silver Slugger awards in his seven seasons as a Padre.

Templeton played 10 seasons with the Padres and ranks second in at-bats, hits and doubles. Tempy, the team MVP in 1985, ranks fourth in triples.

Induction into the Padres Hall of Fame will take place on Saturday, August 8, before the game with the Phillies.

All fans in attendance will receive a Templeton or Santiago Padres throwback replica jersey.

The San Diego Padres open a three-game series with the Rangers Friday night.
 



Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Padres Get One All-Star In 2015]]> Mon, 06 Jul 2015 17:11:45 -0700 http://media.nbcsandiego.com/images/173*120/GettyImages-478827984.jpg

If we could put together an All-Star team full of guys with ties to San Diego, that team would be pretty darn good.

The Padres have only one All-Star representative in 2015 but it's a pretty good one. Justin Upton is going to Cincinnati for the Midsummer Classic. Upton leads the Padres in home runs, RB I and runs scored. He certainly deserves the recognition.

The list of guys who have either played for the Padres or hail from our town is awfully long. Orioles outfielder Adam Jones (Morse High), Dodgers 1st baseman Adrian Gonzalez (Eastlake High) and former University of San Diego star Kris Bryant, who will replace injured Marlins outfielder Giancarlo Stanton, all earned All-Star spots.

Former Padres 1st baseman Anthony Rizzo is an All-Star as a Chicago Cub and former Padres catcher Yasmani Grandal is now an All-Star as a Los Angeles Dodger. It's that last one that will really draw the ire of Padres fans.

Forget about the fact he was popped for using performance-enhancing drugs. That's not even the main issue here. The main issue is Grandal is on the team instead of Padres catcher Derek Norris (Giants catcher Buster Posey is the starter and Cardinals star Yadier Molina are the other backstops).

The argument can be made the Grandal has better offensive numbers, even though Norris has driven in 12 more runs and scored 11 more runs (likely a product of having 78 more plate appearances. The argument can not be made the Grandal has better defensive numbers.

In fact, according to Fangraphs, Norris is the 2nd-best defensive catcher in the National League (just slightly behind Molina) while Grandal is the WORST defensive catcher in the NL (and it's not even close). So that one is a head-scratcher.

But, as many have pointed out on Twitter, Norris has played an avalanche of innings already this year. Perhaps him getting four days off is more important than the honor of being an All-Star.



Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Padres Can't Beat Cardinals Rookie]]> Sun, 05 Jul 2015 13:59:59 -0700 http://media.nbcsandiego.com/images/174*120/GettyImages-479481754.jpg

The St. Louis Cardinals have three starting pitchers who sit in the top-10 in National League in Earned Run Average. The Padres faced all three of them in their 4-game series at Busch Stadium and the guy they could not figure out how to solve is a 27-year-old rookie outfielder.

Tommy Pham hit his first career home run in the Cards’ 3-1 win over the Friars on Sunday. Pham accounted for all three of the Cardinals runs. He also had an RBI double off losing pitcher Ian Kennedy. On both the double and the homer he drove in starting pitcher Lance Lynn, who was another big problem for the Padres.

Lynn had two hits, only one fewer than he gave up in 7.0 innings on the mound. Lynn struck out eight and only allowed one run on a Matt Kemp RBI single in the third inning.

Pham is the guy most responsible for the Cardinals splitting the 4-game series. After the Padres took the first two of their 10-game road trip Pham scored both of the St. Louis runs in Saturday’s 2-1 win. If you’re wondering how it took this guy so long to get to the big leagues, the answer is health.

Pham was drafted in 2006 out of high school in Las Vegas. He’s always had a big upside but injuries have slowed his development. Pham has never played more than 114 games in a professional season. Ironically, it’s injuries to Matt Holliday and John Jay that cleared room for Pham to finally contribute in The Show.

For the Padres offense, the last three games have been typically frustrating. Just three hits (all singles) and one run on Sunday. Nine hits (eight singles) and one run on Saturday. Eight hits (six singles) and only two runs on Friday in a game they did win 2-1.

Usually the Padres would be happy to split a 4-game set on the road against the team with the best record in baseball. But when you’ve been struggling and you win the first two, settling for a tie is going to be considered a missed opportunity.

The Friars open a 3-game set in Pittsburgh on Monday night with a good pitching matchup. James Shields takes the mound against A.J. Burnett.



Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Padres Miss Chance(s) To Beat the Cardinals]]> Sat, 04 Jul 2015 15:29:20 -0700 http://media.nbcsandiego.com/images/191*120/GettyImages-479481758.jpg

The Padres had plenty of opportunities to score runs, but failed to take advantage of them. The Cardinals only had a few opportunities to score runs, but did not let chance pass them by. That's how St. Louis beat San Diego 2-1 on Saturday at Busch Stadium.

The Padres had a baserunner in every inning except the first and eighth. They had multiple baserunners in three different innings but failed to score in any of them. They had nine hits in the game ... eight singles and the one where they scored their only run of the afternoon, a solo homer by Yangervis Solarte in the 4th that put the Friars on top 1-0.

But other than that the Padres kept getting themselves in to, then out of scoring opportunities. Take the 6th inning, for example.

Yonder Alonso led off with a single. But then Solarte hit a rocket up the middle that glanced off the glove of Cardinals starter Carlos Martinez and ricocheted to 2nd baseman Kolten Wong, who doubled off Alonso at first because Yonder failed to freeze on a line drive. Justin Upton and Derek Norris followed with 2-out singles, but Will Venable struck out to end the inning.

To recap, the Padres got three hits in one inning and managed to score no runs.

The Cardinals, meanwhile, only had four hits in the game, three of them singles ... but they managed to score the game-winning run without even getting one hit. In the 8th inning Thomas Pham hit a routine ground ball to Alexi Amarista at shortstop. Amarista tried to play it off to his side and didn't get the glove down all the way. The error put Pham at first with nobody out.

That's the kind of breakdown in fundamentals you don't see from consistently winning teams. Pham then stole second base, advanced to third on a ground ball to the right side by Matt Carpenter, and scored on a Jhonny Peralta sacrifice fly to give the Cardinals their 2-1 win.

Missing chances to score runs has been an issue for the Padres for years now, and it continues to hurt them. Either the entire organization, from the top down, needs a shift in its approach at the plate, or they need to find guys who know how to handle at-bats like that. Just look at St. Louis. They seem to have a roster full of them and it's no coincidence the Cardinals own the best record in baseball.



Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[WATCH: Padres Manager Says, "Enough of This!"]]> Wed, 01 Jul 2015 18:08:52 -0700 http://media.nbcsandiego.com/images/177*120/GettyImages-479159930.jpg

The Padres lost to the Mariners 7-0 on Wednesday afternoon at Petco Park. Starter James Shields only allowed two runs in 6.2 innings but the game got out of hand when Kevin Quackenbush gave up four runs (three earned) in 1.1 innings.

However, that didn't matter because once again the Padres showed an alarming allergy to wood. In their short, 2-game set against Seattle, here's how the San Diego offense performed:

18 innings
4 hits
0 runs
17 K
0-7 with runners in scoring position

Now, we could write it up to just one of those little stretches where the Friars ran in to a couple of good pitchers who are throwing well, which they did. But when you consider the Padres have now been shut out a league-high 13 times this season (in 80 games) this is not just a rough stretch.

It's become painfully obvious that this is who this team is. At least, for right now. However, if things are going to change, that change could be coming immediately.

Manager Pat Murphy said when he arrived in San Diego that he was going to take a couple of weeks and get a good feel for what was going on in the clubhouse without being too invasive. It's a good plan: diagnose the problem before deciding on a solution. After Wednesday's loss Murphy shared what he thinks is ailing his team in a refreshingly honest way.

(you can see it in the video below)

With 82 games left to play the Padres are six games under .500 and are staring down by far their toughest road trip of the season, a 10-game jaunt through St. Louis, Pittsburgh and Texas. This is one of those roadies that do one of two things to a season: kill it or resuscitate it.

If Murphy is going to institute his law, this is the time to do it.



Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Padres Get Just One Hit in Loss to Mariners ]]> Tue, 30 Jun 2015 22:52:47 -0700 http://media.nbcsandiego.com/images/213*120/GettyImages-479102158.jpg

The Padres managed just one hit in a listless 5-0 loss to the Seattle Mariners on Tuesday night at Petco Park.

The lone base knock was a Yangervis Solarte ground-rule double to left in the seventh. Other than that, Mariners starter Mike Montgomery was spectacular, striking out seven while walking just four in the complete game shutout.

Mike Zunino got Seattle (35-42) on the board with a solo home run in the third. Austin Jackson drove in a run with a seeing-eye single in the fifth that just got under the glove of Clint Barmes. Instead of a potential double play, that led to a three-run inning after Brad Miller hit a two-run shot in the next at-bat.

Ian Kennedy gave up the four runs for the Padres (37-42) in just five innings of work. He allowed just five hits and struck out five in the outing.

The two teams finish their quick two-game series Wednesday afternoon.
 



Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Padres About To Enter "The Crucible"]]> Mon, 29 Jun 2015 13:49:13 -0700 http://media.nbcsandiego.com/images/160*126/GettyImages-478904310.jpg

With just two weeks remaining until the All-Star break, multiple questions surround the Padres. Some are good, others are scary.

After Sunday's 6-4 loss to the Diamondbacks, NBC 7's Derek Togerson found insights from Padres radio analyst Bob Scanlan. Among the topics they discussed:

Is Derek Norris going to be an All-Star?
How are the players responding to new manager Pat Murphy?
Is the change working?

And of course the most daunting of all questions ... Will their upcoming 10-game road trip kill their season and prompt a trade deadline fire sale or launch them back in to playoff contention?

As always, Scanlan pulls no punches and offers his insider knowledge.



Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Norris Has A Big Day But Padres Lose]]> Sun, 28 Jun 2015 16:57:50 -0700 http://media.nbcsandiego.com/images/186*120/GettyImages-478900380.jpg

The Padres and Diamondbacks each hit three home runs on Sunday afternoon at Petco Park. The difference is; Arizona hit theirs with more runners on base.

The D-Backs beat the Padres 6-4 to avoid getting swept over the weekend. All 10 runs were scored via the long ball.

Matt Kemp led off the game for the Padres with a dinger. Since moving the leadoff spot on Wednesday in San Francisco, Kemp is 7-20 (.350 average) with a pair of home runs. Padres catcher Derek Norris hit a pair of big flies, the second multi-homer game of his career. Norris smacked a 2-run shot in the 4th inning and a solo job in the 6th. All three of the Padres home runs came off Diamondbacks starter Chase Anderson, but the Friars only had two other hits in the game.

Norris continued his push to be on the National League All-Star team. Giants catcher Buster Posey leads in fan balloting but Norris has certainly caught the eye of San Francisco manager Bruce Bochy, who will have a hand in selecting the reserves.

Arizona’s long balls did a little more damage. Wellington Castillo hit a 3-run blast off Padres starter Odrisamer Despaigne to put the Diamondbacks up 3-1. Despaigne also surrendered a solo shot to David Peralta.

In the 6th inning Padres manager Pat Murphy pulled Odrisamer to put in left-hander Frank Garces against the left-hand hitting Jake Lamb. Lamb ripped a 2-run blast to right field, giving Arizona the cushion they needed for the win.

The Padres have Monday off before playing two games against the Mariners at Petco. Then they hit the road for 10 games (four in St. Louis, three in Pittsburgh, three in Texas) leading in to the All-Star break.



Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Padres Show Signs of Life]]> Sat, 27 Jun 2015 23:10:38 -0700 http://media.nbcsandiego.com/images/174*120/GettyImages-478828602.jpg

In baseball you really aren’t sure if a team is on a roll until it’s well in to a winning streak. Given what the Padres have done this season it would be borderline irresponsible to say they’re rolling right now.

But they sure are doing things better than they’ve done them recently.

The Padres beat the Diamondbacks 7-2 on Friday night at Petco Park. It’s their second straight win and their first series win under interim manager Pat Murphy. In fact, it’s the first time the Padres have won a series against a National League West opponent since they swept the Rockies at home from May 1-3 (they lost six straight NL West series in between).

Starting pitcher Andrew Cashner finally got his first win of the season at home with his 7.0 innings of work. Cash allowed two runs and struck out six. He was finally helped out by some run support, too.

Matt Kemp continued to thrive in the leadoff spot and Justin Upton found his home run swing. Those two hitting at the same time is a very good thing for the Padres, who are now 9-2 when both Kemp and Upton drive in a run. Both guys had a pair of hits. In all, six different Padres had at least two knocks in the game.

The one negative from the game is the health of second baseman Cory Spangenberg, who was hit hard on a slide as turned a double play in the first inning. Spangenberg stayed in the game but was visibly hurting as he ran out a double in the fourth inning. Murphy took the rookie out of the game and revealed Cory will have an MRI to determine how bad the injury is.

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<![CDATA[Padres Start Homestand on Right Track]]> Fri, 26 Jun 2015 23:59:13 -0700 http://media.nbcsandiego.com/images/167*120/GettyImages-478686360.jpg

This is the way the Padres imagined things would go when they started the season. Get a good start, have the bullpen bridge the gap to a dominant closer, while the offense does enough damage to get a win. Rinse and repeat.

Tyson Ross locked up the Arizona Diamondbacks for the second straight start, three relievers threw hitless innings and Cory Spangenberg sparked the offense in a 4-2 Padres win on Friday night at Petco Park.

Over his last two starts, both against the D-Backs, Ross has gone 15.0 innings and allowed a total of three runs. That's not too shabby.

Spangenberg went 3-3 with three singles, scored a pair of runs and stole two bases. In the third inning it was Spangenberg's hustle that tied the game at two. He stole third and came home on a bad throw by Arizona catcher Wellington Castillo.

On Saturday the Padres can do something they have not done since Pat Murphy took over as manager ... win a series. Andrew Cashner gets the start against Jeremy Hellickson.



Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Brews at the Ballpark: 2015 Padres BeerFest]]> Fri, 26 Jun 2015 12:24:20 -0700 http://media.nbcsandiego.com/images/160*120/padres+beerfest+2.JPG

Brews and baseball is the name of the game Friday as Petco Park hosts its summer BeerFest ahead of the Padres vs. Diamondbacks match-up in downtown San Diego.

The San Diego Padres BeerFest begins with the first pour at 5 p.m. The crisp, sudsy lineup includes two samples from nearly 20 local and national breweries including Ballast Point Brewing Co. (pouring Calm Before the Storm and Grapfruit Sculpin), Pizza Port (tapping Chronic and Swamis IPA) and Heml’s Brewing Co. (pouring Batten Down Brown and OG Wheat), among many others.

All beers are $5 and must be purchased with “Friar Funds” included in BeerFest ticket packages. A $60 Field Box package includes one Field Box ticket to the ball game and four Friar Funds good for four beers at the fest. A $40 Right Field Lower Reserved package includes one Right Field Lower Reserved ticket to the game and four Friar Funds good for four brews.

If you can’t make it to Friday’s Padres BeerFest, it’s not a complete strike out.

Petco Park will host two more BeerFests in the coming months: one on July 24 and another on Sept. 4. Ticket packages to those events will also include entry into the ballgame and Friar Funds good for four brews at the BeerFest. Score.
 

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<![CDATA[Padres Make Roster Moves]]> Wed, 24 Jun 2015 16:47:15 -0700 http://media.nbcsandiego.com/images/160*120/Brandon+Morrow+Padres.jpg

The Padres made a slew of roster moves before Wednesday night's game against the Giants in San Francisco, all of them involving pitchers.

Perhaps the most discouraging information comes on starting pitcher Brandon Morrow. He was moved from the 15-day disabled list to the 60-day disabled list due to inflammation in his right shoulder. Morrow was tremendous out of the gate. The Padres won all five of his starts before the shoulder problem showed up.

Reliever Dale Thayer was also placed on the 15-day DL with a strained right shoulder (retroactive to June 17). Thayer's spot in the bullpen will be filled by right-hander Marcos Mateo, who is up from Triple-A El Paso. Mateo has not appeared in a Major League game since 2011 with the Chicago Cubs.

The Padres also recalled reliever Kevin Quackenbush and optioned reliever and Ramona native Nick Vincent to El Paso.



Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[WATCH: Gwynn's Big Father's Day Moment]]> Sun, 21 Jun 2015 18:37:11 -0700 http://media.nbcsandiego.com/images/180*120/GettyImages-466114584.jpg

The last time Tony Gwynn Jr. spoke to his late dad was a year ago ... on Father's Day. The Padres legend passed away the next day.

On Sunday, the first Father's Day for Tony Jr. without his dad, Gwynn delivered the perfect tribute. Now playing for the Syracuse Chiefs, the Triple-A affiliate of the Nationals, Tony stepped to the plate in a tie game in the bottom of the 10th inning and did what members of the Gwynn family do.

(you can watch the video and hear a wonderful play-by-play account below)

He lined a walk-off single to give his team the win. Coincidentally, it was the 19th RBI of the year for Tony. If that doesn't give you goosebumps, I don't know what will.



Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Padres Play an Ugly Game In Arizona]]> Sun, 21 Jun 2015 19:08:43 -0700 http://media.nbcsandiego.com/images/180*120/GettyImages-478024384.jpg

One inning.

One inning is all it took for the Padres to do just about everything you're not supposed to do if you're trying to win a baseball game. Officially, here's how the bottom of the 2nd inning went down for the Padres in their 7-2 loss to the Diamondbacks in Arizona:

- Tomás struck out swinging.
- Lamb walked.
- Owings singled to right, Lamb to second.
- Saltalamacchia walked, Lamb to third, Owings to second.
- Ahmed grounded into fielder's choice to third, Lamb scored on throwing error by third baseman Middlebrooks, Owings to third, Saltalamacchia to second (1-0 AZ).
- Hellickson hit by pitch, Owings scored, Saltalamacchia to third, Ahmed to second (2-0 AZ).
- Pollock singled to left center, Saltalamacchia and Ahmed scored, Hellickson to second (4-0 AZ).
- Peralta safe at second on error by shortstop Barmes, Hellickson scored, Pollock to third (5-0 AZ).
- Goldschmidt singled to center, Pollock and Peralta scored (7-0 AZ).
- Goldschmidt stole second.
- Tomás struck out looking.
- Lamb grounded out to second.

When the dust had settled, the Padres had allowed seven runs on just three hits. The error by Middlebrooks was both physical and metal. With the bases loaded and one out, Nick Ahmed hit a hard grounder right out him.

Instead of going to second base to start a double play or stepping on the bag and throwing across for a double play, Will threw home and pulled Derek Norris off the plate. That option is the worst of the three when trying to turn a double play in the second inning of a scoreless game.

Starting pitcher Andrew Cashner has had bad defense behind him all year, but has also let setbacks get to him and allowed things to snowball, leading to big innings and losses. It really follows the same pattern the Padres have have set forth all season:

When things go well they go really well. When things go poorly they go really poorly.



Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Padres Defang Diamondbacks]]> Sat, 20 Jun 2015 23:18:42 -0700 http://media.nbcsandiego.com/images/168*120/GettyImages-477950838.jpg

The Padres have only won three of their last 10 series. Now they have a chance to win a series in a building where they have not won a series since July of 2013.

Because, baseball.

The Friars got a tremendous start from Tyson Ross to beat the Diamondbacks 8-1 in Arizona on Saturday night. Ross threw his third career complete game, giving up one run on four hits while striking out nine. To round out his fantastic evening, Ross also clubbed his first career triple, a shot off the centerfield wall at Chase Field.

That blast was part of a 4-run 9th inning for the Padres. Melvin Upton Jr. capped the night with his first home run in a San Diego uniform, a 2-run shot off former SDSU star Addison Reed.

Padres catcher Derek Norris also went deep, his 9th homer of the year. The Friars win finally win a set in the desert on Sunday afternoon when Andrew Cashner takes the mound against Jeremy Hellickson.



Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Padres Stung Again in Arizona]]> Fri, 19 Jun 2015 23:43:18 -0700 http://media.nbcsandiego.com/images/180*120/GettyImages-477826358.jpg

Padres starter James Shields reached a whole lot of milestones on Friday night in Arizona. He made his 300th career MLB start, pitched his 2,000th career MLB inning, and took his first loss in a San Diego uniform.

Two out of three ain't bad.

Shields threw 6.0 innings, allowing four runs and eight hits to come out on the wrong end of a game for the first time since joining the Padres. His counterpart, Rubby De La Rosa, was not markedly better but kept the Friars from getting any timely hits.

De La Rosa went 7.0 innings, allowing five hits and just one earned run, which he did to himself when he walked Justin Upton with the bases loaded in the 5th inning to bring home Shields. Rubby then got Matt Kemp to strike out.

The Padres had the bases loaded with one out again in the 8th inning. Cory Spangenberg brought in Justin Upton with a sacrifice fly, cutting the lead to 4-2. But then Brett Wallace, who was just called up from Triple-A El Paso before the game, grounded out to end the inning.

Wallace was added to the big league club instead of fellow infielder Jedd Gyorko. Perhaps one of the reasons is Wallace played his college ball at Arizona State University under current Padres interim manager Pat Murphy.

Or maybe that's just a coincidence.



Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Padres Pull Off Win 3-1 Against Oakland A's]]> Thu, 18 Jun 2015 18:12:34 -0700 http://media.nbcsandiego.com/images/213*120/GettyImages-477633744.jpg

Athletics rookie pitcher Kendall Graveman used his recent demotion to the minors as motivation to get back on track.

If Oakland's offense could do the same thing, manager Bob Melvin's ballclub might have a chance to crawl out of the cellar in the AL West.

Graveman allowed five hits and two runs over seven innings, but the A's sputtered at the plate, managing only five hits off San Diego starter Ian Kennedy and three relievers in a 3-1 loss to the Padres on Thursday.

"A game like that when you give up a couple runs, you expect to be in a better position," Melvin said. "We just didn't do enough offensively off Kennedy to get him on the other side."

A day after setting season highs for runs (16) and hits (20), Oakland couldn't get much going.'

Josh Phegley homered leading off the sixth but the A's had only one other runner get past second base. Stephen Vogt doubled with two outs in the ninth and advanced on a wild pitch before Padres closer Craig Kimbrel struck out Billy Butler to end the game.

Graveman (3-4) allowed two runs and five hits in seven innings, struck out six and walked one. He has a 2.27 ERA in six starts since getting called back up from the minors on May 23.

"When you get up and experience some failure, you actually have to understand what you are doing wrong," Graveman said. "There's a growing process no matter how long you play the game. I understood that when I went down there I had to work on a few things."

Pat Murphy got his first win as San Diego's manager while Derek Norris homered against his former team.

Matt Kemp hit his second home run in three days, and San Diego stopped a four-game losing streak. The Padres fired manager Bud Black on Monday and hired Murphy the following day.

They had lost two straight under Murphy and four overall before beating the A's.

"We needed to win this game right here," Kemp said. "We've played pretty good baseball here and there, but last night was pretty tough."

Kennedy (4-5) gave up one run and four hits in six innings, allowing only one runner past second base. Kennedy, who struck out Stephen Vogt with the potential tying run at the third in the sixth, has a 2.63 ERA in his last four starts after compiling a 7.15 ERA in his first eight.

Kimbrel pitched a one-hit ninth for his 17th save in 18 chances, completing a five-hitter.

San Diego struck out eight times, raising its total in four games against Oakland this week to 40.

Oakland right fielder Josh Reddick went down hard after colliding with center fielder Billy Burns while chasing Melvin Upton's triple in the eighth. Reddick -- who appeared to get hit in the face by Burns' gloved hand and absorbed a knee to the groin -- lay on the warning track for several moments as manager Bob Melvin and a team trainer rushed out from the dugout. Reddick remained in the game.

A day after setting season-highs for runs (16) and hits (20), Oakland couldn't get much going.

Kemp homered in the fourth and Norris doubled the lead when he homered leading off the sixth. He had been hitless in six at-bats at the Coliseum since he was traded to San Diego in December.

Phegley homered in the sixth for Oakland, which had won four games in a row.

Melvin Upton Jr. tripled and scored on brother Justin Upton's sacrifice fly into foul territory in the eighth.

TRAINER'S ROOM

Athletics: 1B Ike Davis (strained left quadriceps) played for Triple-A Nashville on Wednesday and is expected to be activated from the disabled list as early as Friday.

UP NEXT

Padres: RHP James Shields (7-0) pitches the series opener in Arizona on Friday and is third in the NL in strikeouts. Shields has fanned six or more in all but two of his 14 starts this season.

Athletics: RHP Sonny Gray (8-3) takes his major league-low 1.60 ERA into Friday's start against the Angels.
 



Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Padres Lose 16-2 to Oakland A's]]> Wed, 17 Jun 2015 22:22:59 -0700 http://media.nbcsandiego.com/images/213*120/GettyImages-477517726.jpg

The Padres remained winless since firing manager Bud Black, losing 16-2 to the Oakland A’s on Wednesday night.

It’s the second straight loss for new manager Pat Murphy and third straight since Black got the axe earlier this week. Things got so bad on Wednesday, shortstop Alexi Amarista came on to get the last out in the eighth inning.

“I thought I’d pick the guy lowest to the ground,” Murphy joked about the 5-foot-6 Amarista. “You gotta make the decision somehow. Sometimes games happen like this.”

Amarista had one of the lone offensive highlights for the Padres (32-36) with a solo home run in the sixth inning. Will Middlebrooks also homered.

Padres starter Odrisamer Despaigne gave up six runs in six innings, allowing a three-run homer to Billy Butler in the first that got things going for the A’s.

Cory Mazzoni took the brunt of the damage for the Friars’ bullpen, giving up seven runs while getting just two outs.

The two teams finish their series tomorrow afternoon in Oakland.



Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Surgery Scheduled for Padres Star]]> Wed, 17 Jun 2015 21:49:06 -0700 http://media.nbcsandiego.com/images/180*120/GettyImages-472636928.jpg

I’m already starting to feel really bad for Padres manager Pat Murphy. Since he arrived on an interim basis he’s had to share almost nothing but bad news.

Before Wednesday's game against the Oakland A's, he informed us that Wil Myers will have surgery to remove a bone spur from his left wrist on Thursday, hoping to eliminate a condition that has bothered him since his junior high school days. Myers is expected to be able to resume baseball activities in eight weeks and should rejoin the team in early September.

Myers was leading the National League in runs scored when the spur caused ligaments in his hand to become inflamed, hindering his ability to swing the bat. Wrist ailments have cut short each of Myers’ last two seasons.

He had moved from the outfield to first base and said he was feeling comfortable on the infield before the wrist flared up again. Despite playing in only 35 games, Myers is still 4th on the Padres in runs scored this season. While he is gone Yonder Alonso is the everyday starting 1st baseman while Melvin Upton and Will Venable will share time in center field.



Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Padres GM and Players React to Black Firing]]> Mon, 15 Jun 2015 17:45:59 -0700 http://media.nbcsandiego.com/images/213*120/Padres_GM_and_Players_React_to_Black_Firing_1200x675_465054787574.jpg Padres General Manager A.J. Preller addresses his decision to fire Bud Black. Plus, Padre players weigh in on losing their manager. NBC7's Todd Strain reports.]]> <![CDATA[Padres Back in Town for 3-Game Series Vs. Dodgers]]> Fri, 12 Jun 2015 18:51:28 -0700 http://media.nbcsandiego.com/images/213*120/san-diego-padres-generic-sp.jpg

The San Diego Padres kicked off a three game set against the first place Los Angeles Dodgers at Petco Park Friday night. The Friars are hoping to get above .500 after returning from a winning road trip at 31-31 on the season.

Here are some notes for the homestand:

Wil Myers made a start at first base Friday. He's normally in center field but he's said that he likes playing first, he feels comfortable there, so a little bit of a platoon situation perhaps with Yonder Alonso, who's hitting .400 since coming off the disabled list.

Myers was hitting .291 with five homers, 19 RBIs and three stolen bases before going on the disabled list with left wrist tendinitis. He was activated and joined the team in Atlanta.

Another switch: Alonso was taking ground balls at third base, while Will Middlebrooks (normally at third base) was taking ground balls at shortstop – (confused yet?) -- so ... could this infield be something we see in the future?

Manager Bud Black said: “Possibly" ... Mysterious, but normally, that means yes.

One last note: Pitcher Cory Luebke was in the club house Friday; he'll be making his first rehab start in Lake Elsinore this weekend.

The lefty was at the top of his game until he injured his elbow. The last time he pitched in a game was April 2012. He's had two Tommy John surgeries since.

So, a long road for Luebke, good to see him getting back on the mound.

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