Game Preview: San Diego Padres (66-74) at Colorado Rockies (57-84)
By Billy Brost
Two years-plus seems like it isn’t very long. There are hardened criminals that spend less time in the can for crimes they’ve committed. For San Diego Padres’ pitcher Joe Wieland, 28 months has been a lifetime from injuring his arm, to Tommy John surgery, to rehabbing in the Padres’ various minor league affiliates, to finally return to the big leagues and getting the nod on Saturday against one of the worst teams in all of baseball in the Colorado Rockies.
"“It’s something I’ve been dreaming about the last two and a half years. I don’t necessarily think it’s going to feel like my [Major League] debut, but I can tell you it’s going to be about as close as you can get.” (h/t, Adam Lichtenstein/MLB.com)"
Fortunately for Wieland, he’s young enough to bounce back from the procedure, and still have a long and productive career at the big league level if he can improve on his career numbers. At the time of his injury, back on May 6th, 2012, Wieland had a career mark of 0-4 with an ERA of 4.55. Earning his first career victory, after being out for such an extended period of time, would be the icing on the cake.
Wieland has as good a chance as any to earn that initial victory, but his team, as has been the case all season, excluding a few weeks post All-Star break, continues to be one of the worst offenses in all of baseball. They showed their futility once again Friday night in the series opener, being held to three hits, and wasting a solid outing by Eric Stults to lose their third game in a row.
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Jorge De La Rosa, who recently was given an extension by the Rockies, will try and his 14th game of the season for a putrid Rockies’ team that has been missing sluggers Troy Tulowitzki and Carlos Gonzales for an extended period of time. Both hitters have been shut down for the season, and are rumored to be on the move this winter in an overhaul attempt to free up some cash for the fledgling franchise. In his career against the Padres, De La Rosa is 8-3, with an ERA of 4.47. Jedd Gyorko and Cameron Maybin are the only Friars’ hitters with any kind of success, albeit limited, against the lefty.
Keep the Faith.