San Diego Padres: 3 players to praise and blame during Milwaukee Brewers series sweep

San Diego Padres v Milwaukee Brewers
San Diego Padres v Milwaukee Brewers / John Fisher/GettyImages

There have been more than a handful of disappointing series sweeps for the 2023 San Diego Padres this season. They endured another lost weekend by losing a road series to the Milwaukee Brewers and, with it, the Padres fall to a 61-70 record and 8.0 games out of the National League wild-card chase.

Once again, the Friars struggled to protect a lead in two of the three defeats. It has been baffling to witness a team with so much talent fail to put together an extended winning streak. Their longest consecutive wins was three games.

Here are 3 San Diego Padres to praise and blame during the series sweep at the hands of the Milwaukee Brewers

Yu Darvish has another inconsistent August start

The Friar Faithful has seen enough of a starting pitcher failing to perform to their level of expectation. Darvish was pulled after four dismal innings of work in the series opener Friday night. He gave up five runs on six hits and walked only one batter while striking out three.

Darvish has a 4.56 ERA for the season, but August has been disastrous. In five starts, Darvish is 0-3 with two no-decisions and a 4.66 ERA. You appreciate his willingness to take the ball, but the results have not been there for him every fifth day.

Juan Soto hits his 150th career home run

Being in the midst of a 6-for-35 (.171 batting average) batting slump in his last 10 games, Juan Soto belted the 150th home run of his career Saturday night. The hope is the blast would provide a spark to a listless offensive attack. Possessing a consistent hitting team has not been an option for the Friars.

This season has been a grind for Soto. He is batting .258, which is 23 points lower than his career average (.281). Baseball fans know he can hit with authority, but Soto has not looked comfortable in the batter’s box all season.

Despite all the struggles, the Padres expect Soto to return to his former self at the plate. It was encouraging to see him swinging with power to the opposite field this weekend. If Soto can put himself in a good position offensively, he can provide value to the Friars batting order.

Farewell to Jake Cronenworth with a broken wrist

Another day, another loss, and a valuable piece of the lineup is out indefinitely. Jake Cronenworth’s 2023 season may have prematurely ended with a fractured right wrist that landed him on the 10-day injured list. The injury occurred after being hit by a pitch in Friday’s game.

Cronenworth achieved All-Star status with the Padres as a second baseman. However, team management decided to shuffle the look of their infield by signing Xander Bogearts to a big-money free-agent contract this past offseason. The deal forced Ha-Seong Kim to move over to second base from the shortstop position and Cronenworth to first base.

Defensively, the transition to a new position has gone smoothly for Cronenworth. But at the plate, his bat has been silenced all season long. He has shown great range to field ground balls and line drives in the hole between first and second base. Unfortunately, his bat has not match his defensive play. Cronenworth has failed to take advantage of the new restrictions on the shift, which everyone thought would boost his offensive production.