Though not their original ambition, the Giants will happily take a WC 2 spot into the playoffs. Mandatory Credit: Lance Iversen-USA TODAY Sports
With the home victory Wednesday, the Padres tied their win total from 2012 and 2013. So heading into beautiful AT&T Park by the Bay, they knew just one victory would give them more wins since 2010 for the franchise. Though I doubt too many of the players care about this, I’m sure Bud Black is keeping a tally mark on the wall. Thursday they found themselves in a slug-fest and wound out falling short 8-9 despite coming back from a 6-0 deficit. It was also tied for the most earned runs given up by Andrew Cashner as a Padre. The Padres hit 4 home runs, including 2 by Yasmani Grandal with one being a Grand Slam. Grandal now leads the team in home runs with 15 despite a batting average fighting to stay above the Mendoza line. It was a tough one to blow, as a rare bullpen implosion cost the Padres a surprising comeback victory.
However, Friday night the Padres would not be so let down. Staff veteran Ian Kennedy talked about in the intro showed his mettle in leading the Padres to a victory, evening his own record in the process and giving the Padres the most wins in several seasons. Kennedy missed just one start on the season and showed his reliability and fight throughout the season playing through injuries. Yasmani Grandal provided another RBI for his season total and Rene Rivera went 2-4 with 2 RBI as well for the Padres. Quackenbush and Benoit closed out the scoreless last two innings to wrap things up.
Unfortunately the rest of the weekend would not turn out so well for the Padres. Eric Stults continued his strong second half on Saturday night, but Dale Thayer blew it for his second loss in a week. They lost 3-1 on Saturday and were pounded 9-3 on Sunday to close out the 2014 season. Not quite the final week they were going for at 3-4, but the 3 wins did guarantee an improvement from 2013’s record so at least a moral victory on some level. More concerning was Robbie Erlin‘s poor finish to 2014, not even lasting two innings in Sunday’s loss.