May 13, 2014; Cincinnati, OH, USA; San Diego Padres starting pitcher Andrew Cashner (34) pitches during the second inning against the Cincinnati Reds at Great American Ball Park. Mandatory Credit: Frank Victores-USA TODAY Sports
The Padres (20-22) won their first road series of 2014 beating the Cincinnati Reds (18-21) 2 games to 1. The bats came alive once again as the Padres hit four home runs in the series with six extra base hits total.
Mike Leake and Johnny Cueto pitched masterfully. However the Padres were able to pull out the win against Leake thanks to a great outing by Andrew Cashner and a home run by Chase Headley. As a team, the Padres hit .165. That is not a good indicator of how the series went.
Yonder Alonso hit his first home run in a year and added two more hits Thursday night raising his average .200 even. Everth Cabrera even joined in the home run party with his first of 2014. Rene Rivera continues to show he is a viable back up for Yasmani Grandal hitting his 2nd HR of the year.
The Padres won the series despite a team average of .165 because of the outstanding starting pitching. The combination of Cashner, Ian Kennedy and Tyson Ross pitched 20 innings, allowing 7 earned runs (5 by Kennedy alone) and striking out 18. That’s a 3.15 ERA for the 3 starters combined, and Ross and Cashner combined for a 1.29 ERA. Not to mention the bullpen pitched 6 innings of shutout ball.
Seth Smith continues his hot hitting going 3-for-7 with a double in the series. In his last 6 games, Smith is hitting .524 with 1 HR, 5 doubles, 2 triples and 7 RBI. He is hitting .465 for the month of May.
The Padres head into the series with the Rockies 2 games under .500. After 42 games, the Padres are 1 game better this year than they were last year. As the Padres are getting healthier by the day, there seems to be more life in the clubhouse and more life at the plate.
Ignore the team batting average of this series, sometimes that can be misleading. If you look at the past two series, you can see the Padres coming together offensively. The Friars are ending their drought at the plate game-by-game, but here’s hoping the real drought in San Diego ends for those firefighters battling the fires.