Mandatory Credit: Christopher Hanewinckel-USA TODAY Sports

Preview: Padres Heating Up: May 11th - 17th


 

The Padres ended the week on a high note, drubbing Jose Fernandez on Friday and putting up more runs Saturday.  Thankfully, the pitching continued its spectacular roll as well and the Padres finished the week clicking on multiple cylinders.

Sunday Robbie Erlin finished off the home-stand and the Padres won three straight for the first time this season.

They start with 3 straight against Cincinatti on Tuesday, a team on its own that has struggled a bit this year.  Cincinatti does get an emotional shot in the arm with Aroldis Chapman back in the fold after getting hit in the face by a line drive.  The Reds sit at 16-19, not exactly what people imagined when the season began.

I expect the Padres to win the first game with Andrew Cashner facing Mike Leake.  The swing game should be Tuesday, with Reds ace Johnny Cueto going against the Padres Ian Kennedy who has been great this season and especially his last few starts.  Heck, he even might be able to take advantage of the Great American Ballpark and its friendly confines to follow up his home run at Petco.

After the three games in Cincinnati, they head over to division-rival Colorado.  Any inter-division games are important, and the Rockies and Padres played to a split last time in San Diego.  The Rockies entire offense is clicking from Charlie Blackmon to Troy Tulowitzki and even part-timers like Corey Dickerson.

The week will test the Padres pitchers heading into two offensive-minded parks.  Conversely, it could be a great road trip to continue their own offensive roll away from Petco Park.

Chase Headley launched his way back into the lineup on Saturday with a home run. Carlos Quentin continues his rehab in the minors and could be up to the big league club later this week.

Player to Watch:

Seth Smith:  Smith was on fire Friday and Saturday this week, falling one cylinder short of the cycle on both days.

It will be interesting to see how Bud Black manages his players now that more seem to be breaking out of their slumps.  Does he platoon Quentin in order to assure more playing time for Smith and Chris Denorfia?  What are we doing with Will Venable?  Is Kyle Blanks back to AAA?  As the Padres bullpen continues to plug along and Smith keeps hitting, the controversial trade that acquired Smith is looking more like a steal.

Prediction:

4-2 this week, winning 2 of 3 from Cinci and splitting the first two against Colorado.

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Tags: Carlos Quenitn San Diego Padres Seth Smith Week-in-Review