Thursday, May 27, 2010

Pitching, Good Fortune, and a Hairston

Went to last night's game.  The Cardinal side of the story is posted here if you care to read it.

First, people driving downtown last night were a****les.  Unbelieveable.  I'm headed down 10th street to the Padres parking structure we usually use, and let a couple of folks in, you know, to be courteous.  Well apparently everyone else in the middle lane then thought I'd just let them in too.  One Padre fan was willing to risk damage to his Lexus SUV in order to cut me off (yes he did emerge unscathed).  Lesson learned:  drive like a jerk too.  It's sad society has come to this.  LA fans driving around were much better.

Okay, cleansing complete.  On to the game.

  • Thank GOD Tony LaRussa likes to overmanage.  As Joe Posnanski said recently, he can't help himself.  Granted, hindsight is 20/20, but how much different would last night's game be if:
    • Felipe Lopez isn't thrown out stealing in the first, or
    • John Jay isn't thrown out at the plate to end the inning, or
    • Kyle McClellan comes out instead of pitching to Matt Stairs (Stairs is 0-3, 3K lifetime against Trever Miller), or
    • The contact play isn't on with first/third, 0 outs in the 11th.
  • Matt Holliday was booed before his first at bat.  Way to go, Padre fans - never forget.  He STILL hasn't touched home plate.
  • The Cardinals ended two innings (first and fourth) with a hit and a runner thrown out on the bases.  I don't think I've ever seen that happen twice in a game I attended.
  • Dick Enberg pointed this out in the twelfth, and it's amazing:  The Padres are 0-15 this series with runners in scoring position.  They've won both games.  Wow.
  • Kevin Correia was more like his old self (before running into Ubaldo Jimenez, Clayton Kershaw twice, sandwiched around the untimely death of his brother) in this game - 6 innings, 5K's.  He danced in and out of trouble for most of the night though.
  • It was nice to see Bud Black's learned from recent history, and had Ryan Webb/Luke Gregerson up in the pen as the sixth inning started.  The sixth has by far been the worst inning for Correia - he's surrendered 10 runs in that frame alone.  When Correia loses it, it's not a gentle degrade - he goes bad in a hurry.  You gotta be ready with a quick hook once he gets that deep into the game.
  • I've never sat through a more painful inning (for both teams) than the fifth.  Both teams brought their clean up hitter to the plate with the bases loaded.  Both struck out.  Both had a borderline pitch called a strike during the at-bat.  Both wear #7.  Odd.
  • You want to make fun of the Padre bullpen?  Don't.  Gregerson/Mike Adams/Heath Bell struck out 7 hitters between them.  Ryan Webb and Edward Mujica bent but didn't break in extras, although Webb was helped by more bonehead Cardinal baserunning.
  • I didn't know Adrian Gonzalez had that kind of speed.
  • I looked down to update my scorecard, and the next thing I know Stairs has hit the ball in the gap.  He couldn't have thrown it out there in a better spot than rolling the ball under the 401 sign in left-center.  Tremendous theater.
  • Tip your cap to Skip Schumaker and Ryan Ludwick.  Those were great at-bats against Bell, who was throwing gas (96 repeatedly on the fastball).
  • Luis Durango ALMOST got to the ball Schumaker hit.  In one of a 1000 'what-if's' from this game, what if Durango had given ground and held Schumaker to a single?  Don't know.  Perhaps the inning is different, perhaps not.
Quote of the night comes from Jack in the Box:  "Buy me some peanuts and Sourdough Jacks."  This made me laugh.

Quote of the night #2:  Mark Grant "Hey Dick, what's your scorecard look like?"  Enberg:  "It looks like I left it in the rain."

PJ Walters vs Wade LeBlanc today at 3:35.  Walters is making his first start of the season, and the second start of his major league career (the last was 17 April 09 at Wrigley).  LeBlanc looks to bounce back from a horrible outing in Seattle.  Padres go for the sweep.

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