Matthew Suárez 12:30 p.m., Feb. 27
Clayton Richard has been magnificent for the Padres this season, and on Monday he was going for his career high in wins, which would have also ensured that he finished with a record better than .500 on the year. Unfortunately, it didn't work out for Clayton as the Milwaukee Brewers held off the Padres for a 5-3 victory.
Richard won 14 games for the Padres in 2010 (14-9, 3.75) and finishes the 2012 season with an even record of 14-14 and an ERA of 3.99 in 33 games as a starter. Clayton will also probably finish the season having given up more hits than any pitcher in the National League, at 228 hits allowed. He gave up 10 on Monday.
In the bottom of the first inning with two outs, Milwaukee got on the board. Ryan Braun doubled to right field, and Aramis Ramirez singled to right to drive in Braun and the Brewers took a 1-0 lead on the Padres.
In the top of the third inning, Clayton Richard helped himself to some offense. With one out, Richard took the first pitch he saw from Brewers starting pitcher Shaun Marcum and hit it out to right-center field, and the game was tied 1-1.
The Brewers responded in the bottom of the fourth inning. Carlos Gomez belted a Richard change-up to right-center and the Brewers retook the lead 2-1 after four innings.
Again, Milwaukee used the long-ball to score off of Richard in the bottom of the fifth inning. With one out, Norichika Aoki smacked a single into right field, and then Rickie Weeks hit a moon-shot to center field, building the Brewers lead to 4-1.
The Padres tried to fight back in the top of the sixth inning, when with one out, Will Venable doubled and then stole third base. Jesus Guzman then plated Venable with a single, and it was 4-2 Brewers.
Milwaukee answered in the bottom of the sixth, when Jonathan Lucroy hit his 12th home run of the year to open the frame, this one to left-center. After six innings, the Brewers led 5-2.
San Diego kept plugging away, when in the seventh inning, Shaun Marcum was replaced by Jim Henderson on the mound. Everth Cabrera greeted Henderson with a single to center, and then stole second base.
Cabrera went to third base on a Logan Forsythe ground out, and after Chase Headley struck out, Yasmani Grandal singled to left field and Cabrera scored. The Padres narrowed the Brewers lead, 5-3.
But that was all that the Padres could add. The Brewers bullpen managed to keep the Padres bats quiet enough to hold on for the win, ensuring that they finish the season with a record over .500, while the Padres are now 75-85 for the year.
Tuesday's scheduled starter, Casey Kelly, has been scratched, and will be replaced by Anthony Bass. The Padres did not feel comfortable using Kelly as they feel his arm has not recovered from an earlier injury to the point where it's safe to pitch him. In fact, Kelly is also not going to play winter ball in the Arizona instructional league. Spring training is likely where we'll see Kelly throw next.
Everth Cabrera currently leads the National League in stolen bases with 43, the next candidate for the theft crown being Atlanta's Michael Bourn with 40. Cabrera has far less plate appearances than does Bourn, so if Everth makes the squad in 2013 and stays healthy and improves his hitting and his on-base percentage, we could see something special on the base paths next season.
Tuesday, the Padres will go with Anthony Bass (2-7, 4.50) against Tyler Thornburg (0-0, 5.00) of the Brewers. Game time is scheduled for 6:10 PM PDST, and can be heard on XX 1090 AM or seen on Fox Sports San Diego. Time Warner Cable and AT&T U-verse customers can come to my house, bring chips and a six-pack.
More like this:
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- Brewers beat Padres again when pitching fails early — April 24, 2013
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- Padres Chug Brewers' Last Offering — Oct. 4, 2012
- Huston Human After All, Giants Beat Padres — Oct. 1, 2012