MLB

Tatis Jr. Reaches Career Milestone in Padres Win

Padres outfielder sets a franchise record with a 2nd 25-25 season

The Padres beat the A's 8-3 on Friday night in Oakland. In the 1st inning Fernando Tatis Jr. hit a solo home run to become the first Friar with two seasons of 25 homers and 25 steals. It's quite an accomplishment for any player, even more impressive for one who's just 24 years old.

Maybe he should stop doing that. Whenever it happens, San Diego misses the playoffs.

The Padres, at 70-78, have an elimination # of just 8 games. Even if they finish the season on a 16-game winning streak it would be difficult to see them sneaking into the postseason. The last time Tatis Jr. went 25-25 was in 2021, and the similarities are a little odd. Both that year and this year the Padres were coming off year where they won at least one playoff series, shouldering huge expectations, only to fall dramatically short of October baseball.

I know, it's absurd to even obtusely suggest the individual success of one player spells doom for an entire franchise (it doesn't and Tatis Jr.'s play has not been one of the reasons San Diego will likely finish with a losing record again). It's just hard to get excited about individual accomplishments in the midst of such a spectacular organizational failure.

Seth Lugo continued to prove he has what it takes to be a permanent and effective big league starter. Lugo allowed three runs and struck out seven in 6.0 innings, another quality start for a man who came to San Diego looking for a chance to do just that. Lugo was a reliever for the last handful of years with the Mets. The Padres said he could earn a spot in the rotation and he responded with 131.2 innings over 24 starts and, with one or two more outings left, will likely finish with an ERA under 4.00. He will almost certainly opt out of the final year of his contract and test free agency.

In the 9th inning we got another individual moment, but this one is kind of endearing. Outfielder Jose Azocar ... after two years and 290 plate appearances ... finally hit his first Major League home run.

The Padres can tie their season high 3-game winning streak (which is still incredible to write) on Saturday afternoon in Oakland.

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