Walter Mencken 11:31 a.m., Feb. 1
Apparently Jeff Suppan doesn't realize that 37-year old pitchers aren't supposed to just show up and throw five shut-out innings in his first start for his seventh major league club. And no one told 36-year old Mark Kotsay that his bat speed couldn't possibly catch up to a fastball like it did the first time he was with the Padres back in 2003. Thanks to both older veterans, the Padres beat the Milwaukee Brewers Wednesday night to take their first series of the season, 5-0.
The question is, will 24-year old Anthony Bass have any chance on Friday night to get the Padres their third straight win, or should someone call Trevor Hoffman out of retirement?
On Wednesday, Suppan commanded his pitches well and all Kotsay needed was another fastball from the opposing pitcher, and the formula for success was complete. In the third inning with one out, Will Venable hit an infield single and Kotsay plated Venable with a double, Kotsay taking third on the throw to the plate. Chase Headley then walked.
After Yonder Alonso flied out to shallow left field, Orlando Hudson walked to load the bases, and then Cameron Maybin singled home Kotsay and Headley. The Padres led 3-0 after three innings and the Brewers were never able to mount enough of attack to score.
In the top of the fourth inning, Suppan got out of a bases loaded jam with one out. After singles by Corey Hart and Jonathan Lucroy, Suppan then gave up a walk to Alex Rodriguez. But then Travis Ishikawa conveniently ground into a double play to end the threat.
Suppan went five innings, yielding to Ernesto Frieri in the sixth, then Luke Gregerson took over in the seventh and eighth innings, and Dale Thayer threw a flawless ninth.
The Padres scored a couple of insurance runs in the eighth inning, with two out and Cameron Maybin on first base. Andy Parrino singled to right field, Maybin taking third base, and then Jesus Guzman pinch hit for Gregerson and doubled to left field, driving in Maybin and Parrino.
After an off-day on Thursday, the Padres host the Miami Marlins on Friday to open a three-game set. Anthony Bass will face the Marlins' Josh Johnson, first pitch scheduled for 7:05 PM. Television on Fox Sports San Diego, radio on XX 1090 AM.
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