Liz Swain 4:24 p.m., May 24
Padres lose series to Mariners Sunday but rebound to take Monday's game from Brewers
While San Diego lost 'Vedder Cup Light' to Seattle, they even their Cactus league record at 2-2 with a victory over Milwaukee on Monday
Freddy Garcia was shelled in his first outing with the San Diego Padres, as the Seattle Mariners crushed the Friars 8-3 on Sunday afternoon in Peoria. The bottom of the first inning sealed the deal, and the Mariners won the three-game series in the spring training opening set, 2-1.
Garcia threw 34 pitches in one inning facing 10 Mariners and gave up 5 runs (4 earned) on 5 hits. Kyle Seager and Robert Andino opened up with back-to-back singles, and then Raul Ibanez homered to right field and the Mariners staked themselves to a 3-0 lead.
They added on. Michael Morse doubled and Michael Saunders doubled home Morse and advanced to third on an error by Cameron Maybin, Saunders was thrown out at home on a ground-out by Mike Zuzino after Vinnie Catricala was hit by a pitch. Catricala took third base on the play and scored on an error by Yonder Alonso, and the Mariners led 5-0 after an inning.
The Padres got a run back in the fourth inning when Yonder Alonso reached on an error and Mark Kotsay singled, driving Alonso to third base. Cameron Maybin then singled home Alonso and the Padres cut the lead to 5-1.
In the fifth inning, the Mariners slashed it wide open. Jesus Montero opened the inning by doubling off of Casey Kelly, who did not have a good outing besides Garcia. Catricala then doubled and drove in Montero, Catricala thrown out trying to take third base on the play.
With one out, Mike Zunino then walked and Nick Franklin doubled, driving in Zunino. Brad Miller then singled and Franklin scored, and the Mariners led 8-1.
The Padres managed to get two more runs on Sunday. In the eighth inning, after back-to-back singles by Alexi Amarista and Jonathan Galvez, Yonder Alonso slingled home Amarista and the Padres pulled to within 8-2.
In the ninth inning, Gregorio Petit singled and Amarista doubled Petit home, but that was all that the Padres could do as the Mariners took the opening Cactus League series, 3-1.
Then came Monday. In the third inning with two outs, Kyle Blanks singled and Jedd Gyorko yanked a ball over the center field fence for his second home run in spring training to stake the Padres to a 2-1 lead, and that was all that they needed.
The Brewers got a run back in the fifth inning on a bases-loaded sacrifice fly, but Travis Buck scored on a Kyle Blanks double in the sixth inning, and the Padres got the run back and led 3-1. In the eighth, Jeudy Valdez continued his hot streak, doubling home Yeison Asenso and the Padres led 4-1.
And for good measure, the Padres added on in the ninth inning. After a walk to Alexi Amarista and a single to James Darnell, two outs later, Eddy Rodriguez hit a home run to left and that score held up and the Padres won 7-1.
Edinson Volquez pitched two good innings for the win. Volquez will soon go to the World Baseball Classic to represent his country, the Dominican Republic, which starts in early March.
Carlos Quentin has yet to get an at-bat in a spring training game. According to Corey Brock from MLB.com, Quentin is champing at the bit to get back in there. Quentin missed almost 50 games in the front of last season due to injury, so the Padres are likely being careful with the powerful right-handed bat of Quentin, who provided the Padres and manager Buddy Black with good options to stack a formidable line-up against opposing pitching. Stay tuned.
Tuesday, the Padres go at the Cincinnati Reds. No idea who is pitching, likely a host of arms, but the game begins at 12:05 PM PST and can be heard on radio ESPN 1700. Tune in to get your baseball-Jones, it won't be long until they play for real in April. Meanwhile, the Reader sports desk will, in fact, be sending a reporter to Peoria in March so you can get a better flavor of Peoria before the boys break camp. To do it earlier would be confusing, because by mid-March, the boys who are staying with the big club will be better sorted out. And, you know, the less complicated things are for us, the better.