The Padres are 14-8 since the All-Star Break, and the recent surge in performance can be traced to the acquisition of third baseman Yangervis Solarte.
Solarte plays the game with swagger. A lack of pizzazz in the first half of the season led to being dead last in runs scored, batting average, on base percentage, and slugging percentage. It was bad, and many people, including myself, had given up on the hometown team.
Enter Solarte, who has hit 3 HR with 11 RBI since joining the Padres in a trade that sent Chase Headley to the Yankees. His slash is .296/.381/.451 and his swag is 1.000. As Buddy Black would say, “He’s a baseball player.”
The 27-year-old from Venezuela showed off his tenacious attitude last night by muscling a two-run homer in the seventh to give the Pads a 4-3 lead over the ice cold Rockies.
And then Solarte’s infectious swagger took over the pitching staff.
In the eighth, Quackenbush struck out the three best hitters on the Rocks: Morneau, Arenado, and Dickerson. In the ninth, Benoit stuck out the side for a #PadresWin.
Solarte is a baseball player, and the Padres are a baseball team headed for a Wild Card showdown.
Seven games back.
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