MIAMI, FL - APRIL 04: Giancarlo Stanton #27 of the Miami Marlins is congratulated after hitting a two run home run during a game against the San Diego Padres at Marlins Park on April 4, 2014 in Miami, Florida. (Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images)
Over the last few years, the Padres have not been good in April. From 2011 through 2013, they have gone 26-50 in the season's first month.
The last time the Friars had a winning record in April was ... SURPRISE!
2010, when they opened 15-8 and were in the pennant race all the way to the last day of the regular season.
So, after winning on Opening Night in March, the Padres are frustratingly falling in to a familiar pattern, dropping their first three games of April.
"Every manager, every organization, wants to get off to a great start. That's common sense," said Padres manager Bud Black on Friday night. "Our guys are doing the best they can every night to win a ballgame."
However, Friday night's 8-2 loss in Miami was particularly not good.
"Right now our offense is a little stagnant, there's no doubt about that," said Black.
The Marlins offense, however, is looking a lot like MLB's version of the Oregon Ducks football team. Miami leads the league with 35 runs scored in just five games. Padres starter Eric Stults had his first bit of trouble in the first inning, letting a fastball slip out over the middle of the plate to OF Giancarlo Stanton.
The ball landed 458 feet away, after traveling over an elevated beer garden in left field at Marlins Park. So far this young season, that is the difference between the Padres offense and pretty much everyone else.
Facing Marlins starter Tom Koehler, the Padres could not get anything going, even though they had some pitches to hit. Their best chance came in the 5th inning, when the Friars were already down 5-0.
Three singles loaded the bases with one out. Black sent in rookie Tommy Medica to pinch-hit for Stults. He worked the count to 3-1, then saw a pair of fastballs up in the strike zone. One was fouled back, the other ended in a pop-up to first base.
Everth Cabrera followed with a groundout, and the Padres were basically done for.
"We just couldn't get the big hit tonight," said Black. "That was our opportunity to get back in to it."
San Diego has now scored eight runs in four games. Don't expect to have an offensive explosion on Saturday, either. They run up against Jose Fernandez, the reigning National League Rookie of the Year who struck out nine Colorado Rockies over six innings in his first start of the season.
The only saving grace for the Padres is they have their number one, Andrew Cashner, taking the mound. If Cash can keep the game close and put the game in the hands of the bullpens, the Padres will have the advantage.