Hall of Famer Rickey Henderson hit 81 leadoff home runs, far and away the most in Major League Baseball history. That is just one of the records Fernando Tatis Jr. might run down before his career is over.
The Padres superstar shortstop hit the 7th leadoff homer of his career (which consists of just 97 games) in a 3-0 San Diego win over the Diamondbacks at Petco Park on Friday night.
Tatis ripped the first pitch of the game from Arizona starter Luke Weaver over the left-centerfield wall to give the Friars the earliest 1-0 lead imaginable. It was the 5th homer of the year for Tatis, tying him for the 2nd-most in baseball. Please keep in mind he's just 21 years old.
Before the game Padres skipper Jayce Tingler said 1st baseman Eric Hosmer, who's been on the Injured List with stomach inflammation, could be back for Saturday's game. The only problem with that is Jake Cronenworth has been handling that spot extremely well.
The rookie led off the 2nd inning with his 2nd big league bomb, another solo shot to put the Friars on top 2-0. Cronenworth had two hits to run his average to .360 filling in for Hosmer. It's likely Cronenworth, who has surprisingly put himself squarely in the early Rookie of the Year conversation, will move to 2nd base when Hosmer returns.
Another rookie who had never played in the Majors before this year had a memorable moment. In the 5th inning outfielder Edward Olivares pinch-hit for Abraham Almonte and launched his first big league dinger to right-center. It was another solo shot to give the Padres a 3-0 lead.
That was enough for Zach Davies, who didn't give up a hit until the 5th inning and ended up striking out six without a walk in 5.2 shutout innings. From there the bullpen did its job.
Craig Stammen, Drew Pomeranz and Emilio Pagan tossed 2.1 hitless innings then Kirby Yates locked up his 2nd save of the year with a scoreless 9th. The Padres improve to 8-6 (4-1 against Arizona) and can win another series on Saturday when Chris Paddack takes the mound against Merrill Kelly.
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