As usual, there were droves of San Francisco Giants fans all over the East Village and Gaslamp area of downtown San Diego, as their beloved baseball team was in town to take on the Padres. That is just normal when the Giants come to town.
It’s like an annual tradition in recent years for thousands of their fans to come virtually out of nowhere to attend a game at Petco. It turns into a shouting match between the two teams’ fan bases. In general, the stands are peaceful as the two groups coexist peacefully.
Well this week, the Padres were able to put a damper on the plans of many Giants’ fans as the Friars took two out of three games from the Giants, including the first two games of the series.
The bullpen was great for the Padres, and the youth on the team is starting to really excite the fan base.
Hunter Renfroe and Manuel Margot were both productive in the series for the Padres. It will be a fun year to watch these two youngsters go through the growing pains of being major league regulars. Both right-handed hitting outfielders have the ability to be really special players.
With Saturday’s victory, the Padres took the series, and the mission was accomplished. The team was not able to finish off the sweep, but the moral victory of taking the series from a much better team is sweet. The Padres must focus and build upon things like this in order to get better as a team, and an organization.
Game 1- Padres 7, Giants 6
Manuel Margot homered in both of his first two plate appearances and that set the tone for the Padres in the teams’ home opener. Luis Perdomo was cruising in the game until a rough sixth inning seemingly killed the Padres’ festivities. Brandon Belt homered to center with the bases loaded to put the Giants ahead 5-4 at that point.
The grand slam took most of the air out of Petco Park, but the Padres were able to rally on a Yangervis Solarte double in the seventh inning. Brandon Maurer pitched the ninth and looked nasty in doing so, as the Padres took the series opener in front of 43,441 fans. A very sweet home opener.
Game 2- Padres 2, Giants 1
With Madison Bumgarner on the mound, the Padres had a tough task in front of them. The left-handed pitcher has a mean demeanor on the mound and can be a tough competitor. Andy Green, on a hunch, started Luis Sardinas, Allen Cordoba, and Jabari Blash in the game and the trio did the job. Cordoba recorded his first major league hit on the day and also scored a run for the Padres.
The story for the Friars was Jhoulys Chacin, who matched Bumgarner’s intensity, and went 6.2 scoreless innings, striking out five, and throwing 95 pitches. He left in the seventh after a double to right field by Eduardo Nunez that was just out of the reach of Hunter Renfroe. Ryan Buchter pitched the ninth for his first save of the year, despite allowing a run to score on a two-out single by Brandon Crawford. The Padres took the series with this win and the club house was rocking after the game.
Game 3- Giants 5, Padres 3
Game three was a chance for the Padres to finish off the sweep. Johnny Cueto was on the mound for the Giants, and he was certainly tough, going seven strong innings and allowing two runs to score, while striking out seven. The Dominican right-hander threw 109 pitches on the day. For the Padres, Clayton Richard was not able to muster up the same magic as he did against the Dodgers last week. He went six innings, allowing four earned runs on five hits while striking out three.
Offensively for the Padres, Wil Myers continues to hit like a man possessed, as he took Cueto deep in the sixth inning for a two-run home run. Myers was 2-5 on the day, while Yangervis Solarte was 3-4. The Padres had a chance in the ninth, as Myers was at bat as the winning run with one out. Margot hit a soft single to right with one out and Travis Jankowski walked to put runners on first and second. However, the first baseman grounded into a double play to end the game, and just like that, the Padres rally was foiled.
Next up for the Padres:
Three-game series in Colorado (April 10-12)