Coming away from a season-opening seven-game homestand with a 4-3 record probably isn’t what you had in mind for the Padres. But given the shoddy defense, a crippling injury to our beloved Bebo and a fairly pedestrian offensive showing with a few exceptions, that’s where we stand.
A few guys, in particular, haven’t gotten off to hot starts that could have made all the difference over the past week. The three players who come to mind are all position players because, by and large, the pitching staff has been really solid – especially the new-look, star-studded starting rotation.
Let’s cross a big one off the list to get things started.
Padres need Manny Machado carrying the offense right now
With Fernando Tatis Jr. sidelined, at a minimum for the next week-plus, the San Diego Padres need Manny Machado to get it going sooner rather than later.
Tatis Jr. finished fourth in NL MVP voting last year – which tells you how big a loss this is for the offense. But Machado finished third and, with Padres fans looking for a monster year from their Gold Glove third baseman, he’s come up well short of that mark early on.
Machado enters Thursday’s off-day batting just .200/.333/.320 on the year. Of his five hits, just one went for extra bases – and that came via a home run on April 3. Since that game, last year’s Silver Slugger winner for NL third basemen is just 2-for-14 (.143).
Machado will head into this weekend’s series in Texas with a clean slate, taking on Kohei Arihara in Friday’s opener. Given it’s just his second big league start, everyone is starting at zero – let’s hope the Padres slugger can get the extra-bases part of his game going because it’ll go a long way in filling the void in the lineup.