Top 5 Padres Moments Of 2014
Mandatory Credit: Christopher Hanewinckel-USA TODAY Sports
#3 “The Missing Piece” Strikes On Opening Night
You’ll notice the trend continue as the Padres made another trade but in the recent off-season. This one had Padres’ fans scratching their heads in the winter of 2013. The Padres had traded long-time ace reliever Luke Gregerson to the Oakland Athletics for notoriously known utility outfielder Seth Smith. Seth Smith? That’s the answer? Well according to then G.M. Josh Brynes, he was quoted as saying that Smith was the “Missing Piece” that would take the Padres over the top. Good one, Josh.
It didn’t happen. But he wasn’t that bad after all. When the current lineup was too busy getting injured or striking out, Smith made the most of his role and was the most consistent hitter in the lineup and it started immediately with opening night on ESPN as the Los Angeles Dodgers came down the I-5 to Petco Park.
We take you to the bottom of the 8th inning, Padres down 1-0 to the Dodgers, Seth Smith at the plate with a 2-0 count facing over-paid reliever Brian Wilson, who happened to have elbow issues at the time. With one swing, opening night changed as Smith hit a sky-high home run into the night in right field as the Padres tied the game at one. That was Smith’s first at-bat with the Padres in a pinch-hit spot. In the same inning, Chris Denofria hit a liner into center as the Padres took the lead and went on to win 3-1.