Diamonds in the Desert: A Baseball Blog from Tucson

Ya’ Win One, Ya’ Lose…Three
April 24, 2011, 19:20
Filed under: Uncategorized

This won’t do justice to the last four games, but I feel guilty when I get too far behind.  Besides, I’ll have company this week and won’t be able to post:  gotta get something out right now before I’m REALLY far behind! 

After I made a fuss about their first multiple-game winning streak, the Tucson Padres dropped the last two in the series and ended up splitting with the Fresno Grizzlies at Kino Stadium.  Here’s a very cursory look at the two lost causes: 

Thirsty Thursday!  April 21st – Tucson 4; Fresno 5.  Another close loss as RHP Jeremy Hefner pitched the first six innings and allowed all but one of the Grizzlies runs.  He earned his first loss of the season.  That final, game-winning Fresno run, was charged to closer Luis Perdomo.  It came in the ninth.  Tucson had been down two at that point and put up a solo run in the bottom of the ninth – not enough to tie or win.  The local paper was wowed by 1B Anthony Rizzo’s line in the game:  he went three for four with a HR and an RBI single.  Hard not to like that, especially when the only other Padres with RBIs were Cedric Hunter and Matt Clark (each with one).  Team also had an error, two caught stealing, one picked off the bases, and a grand total of only eight hits.  Tough night.  

April 22nd – Tucson 8, Fresno 9.  The starting pitcher (LHP Rob Musgrave, just called up from AA San Antonio Missions to pitch in Wade LeBlanc’s spot so Wade could be ready for a big-league call up – more on that in a bit) and two relievers following him didn’t figure into the decision on this one as the teams were tied at from the end of five (five to five) until the eighth.  Tucson relievers kept holding the Grizzlies at bay until Scott Munter allowed them four runs in the top of the eighth.  Our old friend, Casey Daigle, tried to give us a hand out of the hole when he allowed us three runs in the ninth…just wasn’t quite enough!  More oohs and aahs for Rizzo (and, in fact, he’s getting significant national exposure, which couldn’t hurt Tucson Padres’ PR one little bit!) in my local paper as he hit a two-run HR which raised his batting average to .452 with 24 RBIs and six homers.  But there were other nice lines, too.  Which is good, because one thing I know…Rizzo won’t last long at AAA if he continues to perform as he is (and if the San Diego team continues to slump as they are).  Climb on board the Rizzo Express!!  In any case, Hunter and Aaron Cunningham both had an RBI on two hits; Luis Durango got two RBIs on two hits.  

After splitting the series with Fresno, the Padres traveled to Sacramento to face the River Cats, the Oakland A’s AAA affiliate.  Traditionally a PCL powerhouse, I was anxious to see how our Pads did against this team on their turf.  In fact, I listened to last night’s game…a loss, sadly. 

April 23rd – Tucson 2; Sacramento 4.  Maybe it was me, but the team just seemed flat last night.  This was aggravated by a starting pitcher, RHP Will Inman, who wasn’t dealing his best stuff.  He tossed 51 pitches in the first inning (the River Cats’ broadcaster was positive Will would be pulled before the FIRST was complete) and allowed three runs (on only four hits), including a leadoff home run that set the tone.  Fortunately, Will settled a bit and somehow managed to last through four innings.  But not before earning his second loss of the season…  Rizzo not so much of a factor as our DH.  Both Logan Forsythe and Guillermo Quiroz got two hits.  No errors (for either team) – yay, Tucson! – but that’s pretty much the high point. 

April 24th – Tucson 7, Sacramento 5.  We won!  The game was just winding down when I tuned in late this afternoon and the River Cats had the winning run on base in the bottom of the ninth…and we got out of it!  RHP Jon Leicester made his second start since coming off the DL and this time was stretched out enough to go five innings and earn a win.  In five, he allowed only three hits, NO runs, one walk, and four Ks.  3B Jesus Guzman is my offensive player of the game:  two hits in five at bats with three RBIs.  C Eddy Rodriguez hit his first homer of the year; a solo shot in the second. Tucson was charged with one error vs. three by Sacramento.  

LeBlanc in the Bigs – This Time He Worked!  Our Wade LeBlanc did get the expected call to the Bigs yesterday and started in the game today that the San Diego Padres played at home versus the Phillies.  He faced off against Roy Halladay – no pressure!  Nothing like going from AAA to playing against one of the monster starters for the Phils!  But Wade stood his own.  Pitched eight innings in a three-to-one loss.  Wade allowed three runs (one was a homer) on nine hits/four walks, and two Ks.  Not a bad line…but not nearly enough against the Phils.  SD just couldn’t get anything against “The Doc.”  

Speaking of the Parent Unit…  Now that I’m a Tucson Padres fan, am I compelled to follow and root for the San Diego team?  This is actually a vexing question for me.  I grew up as a Dodger fan…followed by years where my attention to baseball waned severely.  Years later I had a good friend who was a huge baseball fan and our association resulted in a slow reemergence of my interest in baseball.  Living on the East Coast and no longer feeling that old tie to the Dodgers, I found myself liking the Colorado Rockies.  This was for all the wrong (and totally silly) reasons: I loved their purple and black uniforms, I’d always wanted an assignment to CO, and because they had such incredible power and played exciting games.  Then I moved here.  I’d never been a Diamondback fan, but as I watched Tucson Sidewinders mature and grow up to be DBacks, I slowly gained an allegiance to them.  PLUS, being back in the Southwest put me in Dodger territory again.  Of course, I deviated from the norm and even pulled for the SF Giants in the World Series!  I can’t be cheering for the entire NL West!  I still don’t know what to do about those San Diego Pads! 

(Disclaimer – This posting has not been reviewed/approved by Pima County, the City of Tucson, the Tucson Toros, the Reno Aces, the Tucson Padres, Tucson AAA Baseball, Diamondbacks, Padres, PCL, MiLB, MLB, Golden Baseball League, National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues, Tucson Baseball LLC, SK Baseball LLC, or any other baseball official and represents the views and biases of the author alone)


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