Bats Punchless, Padres Drop Series to Bucs

nicholaslee
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Apr 16, 2014; San Diego, CA, USA; San Diego Padres relief pitcher Huston Street (16) throws during the ninth inning against the Colorado Rockies at Petco Park. Mandatory Credit: Christopher Hanewinckel-USA TODAY Sports

The Padres (27-33) were in an uphill battle against the Pittsburgh Pirates (28-31) before this series even started. For 2 games, the Padres had to go with someone who was not their normal starting pitcher. Neither game turned out well. Neither Tim Stauffer nor rookie Jesse Hahn could complete 4 innings. The bullpen was exhausted, and as a result, they had some out-of-character outings.

Game 1 was just a disaster, losing 10-3. The Padres were out-hit 16-5 in that game. The bullpen was forced to pitch over 6 innings. Stauffer gave up 2 runs on a home run and 2 walks in 2.2 innings. Game 2 was not much better, Jesse Hahn surrendered 2 home runs, 4 runs total and 2 walks. The one bright spot Tuesday night was the resurrection of Jason Lane, former Houston Astros outfielder. In relief of Hahn, Lane pitched 3.1 innings of shutout ball, striking out 3. “I was surprisingly a lot calmer than I thought I would be,” Lane told mlb.com’s Will Laws. Lane once hit 26 home runs for the National League champion Astros in 2005, also homering in Game 3 of the World Series against the White Sox. Now he is a major league reliever, and from the looks of it, a good one. 

The Padres salvaged the finale by beating the Pirates 3-2 on 1 measly hit. A bunt single by Everth Cabrera. As a team, the Padres hit .119 for the series. That’s the worst team average in any series all year. They only managed 2 extra base hits, both doubles. Ian Kennedy continued to impress, earning his 5th win, striking out 7 in 6 innings. He has won 3 of his last 4 starts.

The offensive player of the series, if there is one, is Everth Cabrera. He had 2 hits, an RBI, a run scored and a stolen base. There wasn’t much to choose from, but Cabrera catalyzed the rally that helped the Padres come out on top. Also, Chase Headley was hit by yet another pitch Wednesday and eventually left the game. No word yet on the extent of his health. The Padres really cannot afford to lose another key player to injury.

The Padres get a much-needed day off Thursday. The bullpen pitched 14.2 innings during the 3-game series. That’s almost 5 innings each game. The starters for the series against the Nationals need to go deep into the game to spell this overused bullpen. On a good note, Huston Street remains perfect. He notched his 18th save Wednesday, which now is the major league lead. He could be the lone all-star from this Padres team and it would be well deserved. His ERA is down to 1.13.

This was a messy series. And the road does not get much easier, with the Friars welcoming the Nationals to town. They must find a way to score on a consistent basis, especially to keep up with the good offense of Washington. The pitching situation should settle down a bit as the Padres welcome back Andrew Cashner this weekend.

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