Fernando Tatis Jr.’s epic game-winning HR to cap comeback shows Padres have the vibes

Can Fernando Tatis Jr. carry the Padres in 2024?
San Diego Padres outfielder Fernando Tatis Jr
San Diego Padres outfielder Fernando Tatis Jr / Matt Thomas/San Diego Padres/GettyImages

Being part of the Friar faithful this offseason was not an easy task. After years of investing money into their superstar talent and trading from their surplus of top prospects, the San Diego Padres appeared to do a 180-degree turn this winter. The Padres began to shed payroll, opted not to invest in free agency, and traded away one of the biggest stars in the game.

But on Monday, the vibes were good. Scratch that. The vibes were great. Fernando Tatis Jr. capped off a tremendous come-from-behind victory over the Chicago Cubs with a two-run blast in the bottom of the eighth inning with two outs.

Tatis' shot over the wall in left field proved to be the difference as Robert Suarez notched his fourth save of the young season and helped the Padres improve their record to 6-7. There are a lot of games left to be played, and the Friars compete in the toughest division. But games like Monday night help remind the fanbase that this team has what it takes to win.

Fernando Tatis Jr.’s epic game-winning HR gives Padres fans hope

Monday's game wasn't a back-and-forth battle between two hungry teams. The Cubs got out to a massive 8-0 lead thanks in large part to the mistakes made by Padres starter Yu Darvish. The right-hander made it through just three innings, throwing 65 pitches, and gave up four runs. Pedro Avila, who came on in relief of Darvish, did no better. Avila also allowed four runs in three innings. Between them, Darvish and Avila walked six Cubs' hitters.

But the Padres, even without Juan Soto, still have one of the most potent lineups in the league. Along with Tatis, the Friars have Xander Bogaerts, Manny Machado, and the resurgent Jake Cronenworth. Jackson Merrill has the makings of a star, and Ha-Seong Kim, despite his two errors on Sunday, is an elite-level defensive shortstop. Throw in Jurickson Profar and Luis Campusano, both of whom have an .850 OPS or higher, and San Diego's offense is scary. All of those guys contributed to Monday's comeback.

It was a difficult offseason, to be sure, but the Padres also traded for Michael King and Dylan Cease to pair with Darvish and Joe Musgrove. It's been a yo-yo season thus far for the Padres, but San Diego has the horses to compete in the difficult NL West.

Tatis' mammoth homer on Monday night capped off a comeback win of epic proportions, and it may have opened the floodgates for the good vibes about to hit San Diego.

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