Padres survived a grueling schedule early; so what’s next?

(Photo by Michael Owens/Getty Images)
(Photo by Michael Owens/Getty Images) /

Baseball’s best rivalry hasn’t disappointed. The battles between the San Diego Padres and Los Angeles Dodgers have featured some incredible moments already this year – and with the Friars taking three-of-four over the weekend at Dodger Stadium, Jayce Tingler’s club can really enjoy Monday’s much-needed day off.

"“We’re going to fight these guys till the end,” Eric Hosmer told “We respect what they’ve done. We respect who they are. But we’re certainly not going to back down from them. We’re going to give them our best shot every single time. That’s the statement we made this series.”"

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The Padres have just finished a daunting test early in the year: 17 games in as many days, including seven against the division-rival Dodgers, widely considered the best team in baseball. San Diego took four of the seven and find themselves just three back of L.A. as of Monday evening.

Padres roster badly needs some rest

Rest simply hasn’t been in the cards for the club, which has battled an array of key injuries early. Fernando Tatis Jr. scared us all half to death with his shoulder injury in early April, and the team lost Adrian Morejon for the year to Tommy John surgery. Dinelson Lamet finally made his return to the mound, only to leave after two innings – casting further doubt about his durability.

Now, San Diego will enjoy two off-days in the next four days. The club is catching its breath Monday before a quick two-game set against the Arizona Diamondbacks this week in Phoenix. Then, it’s another day off Thursday before the Padres head into May against the Giants at Petco Park.

The schedule gives San Diego a weekly day off for much of May before the team runs off a 20-game sprint to close out the month and open June’s schedule. Getting the team as healthy as possible between now and then will be key as the Friars look to make moves in the NL West.

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So, for now, enjoy taking three of four this weekend from the Dodgers. Make no mistake: May slows down a bit early, but there are more tough stretches looming for the Padres.