The excitement of the MLB season seems to be slipping away for many San Diego fans. The attention seems to have shifted to the San Diego Chargers. Well I know that there are still many die-hard Friar Faithful who are still interested in the team like I am.
The San Diego Padres are coming off being swept by the Chicago Cubs and are now 18 games out of first, but still are not in dead last some how. This season is all but over, but the young talent on this team just keeps on bringing me back.
The Padres will now start a new series against the Miami Marlins at Marlins Park. The venue of the 2017 All Star Game will host a three game series between the two teams. We are all aware at this point of the abyss the Padres find themselves in. Well let’s have a gander at how Don Mattingly‘s team is doing so far. The Miami Marlins are actually having a pretty decent 2016 campaign. At this point with a 66-61 record the Fish are battling it out for a wild card spot.
In terms of current form the Marlins are struggling in this month of August. They have only won two out of the seven series in this month. The Padres will be looking to give them a fight and make their playoff push a bit harder. This should be an action packed series, with a lot to look forward to. Let’s get right into the pitching matchups.
The Padres have yet again dodged the bullet of facing Jose Fernandez. They did not face the Cuban pitcher at Petco Park nor will they have to in this series in Miami. These pitching matchups will definitely be very interesting. Neither team will have the edge and that should pave the way for a terrific series. The Padres will have former Marlin, Jarred Cosart on the mound for the first game. Cosart has really been phenomenal in his last two starts for the Friars. Cosart has only allowed two runs total in his last two starts and has looked sharp on the mound. The righty will probably be looking forward to his return to Marlins Park. Cosart has been very successful at Marlins Park posting a 2.49 ERA in 14 games. Cosart will not have it easy however, with David Phelps on the mound for the Marlins. Phelps has had a great campaign going from the bullpen to the rotation. Overall Phelps has held a solid ERA of 2.28 over the course of the season. Phelps has really been impressive since joining the Marlins pitching rotation. The former Yankee is 2-1 with a minuscule ERA of 1.65 in his last three starts. Overall Phelps has held a 1.31 ERA as a starter this season. This is definitely the most appealing pitching matchup of the series. I do feel that it will live up to the standards and be a true pitching matchup.
The second game of the series will be one that I do feel the Padres can win. The Padres will have the beloved, Clayton Richard on the mound. The lefty has really looked sharp since joining the Padres rotation. He has only allowed two earned runs in 10 innings of work as a starter. If Clayton can stay consistent and only allow two runs to score the Padres should be on track to a W. The Marlins will have Jose Urena on the mound on Saturday night. Urena has struggled this season going 2-4 with a 6.33 ERA. However,Urena would look solid in his last start. He would only allow two runs through six innings against the Pittsburgh Pirates. I definitely see the Padres coming out on top in the second game of this series. But who knows? Maybe Urena can have a similar start to his last and make it interesting.
The finale of the series will bring a matchup which I am really looking forward to seeing. The Padres will have Rule-5 gem, Luis Perdomo on the mound. Despite what his 6.24 ERA might indicate the sinker baller has really been a revelation for the Padres this season. Perdomo has turned out to be a key part to the rotation and definitely looks to be in the Padres plans for the future. Perdomo would have the best start of his career his last time out on the mound. The Dominican pitcher would only allow an unearned run in seven innings against the Diamondbacks. Perdomo just seems to be getting better and better as we see him progress throughout the season. Perdomo will face a familiar face in Andrew Cashner. Many Friar fans or former teammates might not even recognize Cashner with his new cleaned up look. Well because of the no beard policy held by Don Mattingly, Cashner is clean-shaven. He has also not been able to get himself a W since joining the Marlins. Cashner has been great in his last two starts only allowing a run in each of the games. It seems like Cashner is still being haunted by the ghost of no run support which he saw a lot of in San Diego. Hopefully that ghost can strike again and Perdomo and the Padres can take the finale of this series. These pitching matchups will definitely be some of the most interesting ones we have seen as of late. It is really hard to say which team will end up taking this series, but it seems like the Padres do have a solid chance. Make sure to tune in as we are definitely due to see some exciting baseball in this series.
Players To Watch
I just had to throw the legend, Ichiro Suzuki in the players to watch. This man has already reached three thousand career MLB hits and has practically made himself immortal. Sure he doesn’t go out there every day, but he still performs at a very high quality when he does. Ichiro is just pure class and is a real joy to watch when he is out on the field. His whole routine is just heavily entertaining and fascinating on its own. Ichiro has performed great this season on his limited playing time. Suzuki is at a .298 BA with 74 hits on the season. At age 42, Ichiro has still managed to steal nine bases as well. This is one of the best players to have ever stepped on a baseball diamond. Let’s not forget this man hit over 200 hits for 10 consecutive seasons. He also made All-Star games from 2001-2010. This man is a legend and should always be one to watch in any series against any opponent.
From a legend we now to go to someone who doesn’t get enough credit. Christian Yelich is one of the most underrated players in all of baseball. You just never hear anyone mentioning this guy at all, but you here people talking about Dexter Fowler. Really!? Yelich’s numbers obliterate Fowler’s or any other Cubs outfielders. Yelich has quietly been having another masterful campaign this season. He has hit .311/.384/.491 this season, he does also lead the Marlins in OPS at .875. Not even mentioning that he has hit 15 home runs this season as well. Yelich is one of the most underrated players in the MLB, make sure to catch this Fish in this series.
Everyone In The Padres Lineup
No one, I mean no one had a standout series against the Chicago Cubs. The Cubs elite pitching staff held the Padres to just seven runs over three games. To add to it two of those runs actually came from wild pitches. So yeah the offense is definitely at a low point in this moment of time. But that isn’t necessarily a bad thing. We know that this offense is capable of driving in plenty of runs, we have seen it before. A few Padres did actually have okay games in the finale of the series against the Cubs. Travis Jankowski would go 2-5 with a double, so not bad for Freddy “The Flash”. Maybe he can get himself into a groove again in this series. Wil Myers would only go 1-4 but would have an RBI triple, so not bad for Wil. But we are away from Petco Park and in Florida so not looking so good there. Wil went 1-12 in a series in Tampa Bay earlier this season. Probably the best performance had to be from Ryan Schimpf. “The Jumbo Schimpf would go 2-3 with a double and a triple adding to that impressive Slugging Percentage of .567. Definitely look out for “Jumbo Schimpf” in South Beach this weekend. But definitely look out for everyone this weekend from “The Cuban Missile” to Yangy, Schimpf, Freddy, “The Pride Of Poway” and everyone in between. You just never know who will surprise you on this team. Enjoy the series and the preview Friar Faithful until next time, Go Padres!