Ken Leighton 9 a.m., March 24
You don't have to believe. No law is written in Western Civilization that commits anyone to a belief. Baseball was born here. That probably has a lot to do with a lot. Faith is something you don't have to get your hands on until Sunday morning. How can anyone not love America?
The Padres lost their second straight game yesterday. Interesting to read the fallout. The only thing I know for sure is that both losses don't count at all when this begins for real. It's just practice. It's just the boys getting loose. That's all it is.
Jaff Decker went yard yesterday. Man that guy sure has a sweet swing. Didn't count for anything. Doesn't matter. You have to wrap your head around spring training. It's practice. Pitchers are trying to get hit. Batters are trying to go the other way.
Faith is not a law, it's baseball, pure and simple.
Sure, Mosely got hit yesterday, so did Owings. And holy cow did Boxberger get lit-up or what? Makes no difference. It's Peoria. The Padres lost 13-7. It's an insignificant footnote. Carlos Quentin went 2 for 2 in his debut. I'm guessing he wasn't popping the cork on a bottle of champagne. It didn't raise his lifetime batting average a single percentage point.
The Arizona Diamondbacks won the National League West last season. They're the favorites to win it again this year. Their Cactus League record last year? Try 12 wins against 25 losses. Only the Houston Astros were worse.
It counts starting in April, not in March. March is for throwing the ball over the plate, not painting the corners. March is taking a breaking ball the other way. March is the 5-4-3 double play, when you can get it. It doesn't count yet, it's all about getting your work in.
So, before you decide to bury the Padres, consider where we're at here. Overreaction was when Dewey beat Truman. The Padres have yet to play a game that counts. Faith is not a law. It's baseball.
Faith is baseball, and it doesn't start until April, regardless of what your fortune cookie says.
There's a bug going around in camp. CF Cameron Maybin and catcher John Baker are the latest victims. 3B Chase Headley has an issue with his back, him and OF Chris Denorfia. Every year it's this. Boys, get well, get back into camp. You're needed.
Former Padre Oliver Perez took the mound yesterday for the Mariners, he hasn't played in the major leagues since 2010. It didn't go very well for the lefty, he gave up a couple of hits and a couple of walks and some runs in an inning and a third. He had pitched well in relief for the Tomateros of Culiacán in the off-season. He's hoping to catch on in Seattle, it will be interesting to see if he makes the club.
Fortune-cookie image courtesy of Wendy Miller