brewers baseball and things

don’t know much about San Diego

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jonesThe San Diego Padres always felt like the other side of the world to me. The 1977 Randy Jones Topps Card is the oldest memory that comes to mind; the one with the blue N.L. All Star banner across the bottom. Why was Mr. Jone not wearing a cap in the photo? How is that he looks like Willy Wonka? Well, he won 22 games and pitched 315 innings in 1976 so I concluded he could do whatever he wanted.

The Padres used to wear chocolate and banana cupcake uniforms; disgusting to many, but a novelty to others, including me. These days, their jerseys are kind of plain except for the camouflaged army variety.

Gary Coleman starred in a Walt Disney-ish movie about the Padres. Ray Kroc owned more than McDonalds. He alsobev owned the Padres from 1974-1984. Kurt Bevacqua  played on a lot of teams including the Milwaukee Brewers and San Diego Padres. His 1976 baseball card was one of the first cards I remember having nothing to do with baseball.  He was the bubble gum blowing champion and it inspired us all to invest in big league chew pouches. The stale gum in packs was not enough.

Bevacqua signed with the Padres in 1982, same year that Tony Gwynn launched his amazing career in San Diego. Eric Show was on that 1982 Padres team as well. Show was a vocal John Birch Society member and that got me thinking what the hell is a Padre anyway?  A Friar, as in Franciscan Friars who founded San Diego in 1789. It was and still is the only religious mascot in baseball.

The Padres are obscure, even in California. No Padre has ever thrown a not hitter dating back to 1969 when the National League invited the Friars and Montreal Expos into their exclusive club. So it’s always significant when the Padres play because it might happen. Every other team in baseball; including the more recent expansion teams;  Colorado, Arizona and Florida have at least one no hitter.

The Padres opened a three game series with the Brewers Monday night in Milwaukee and Andrew Kashner was on the mound.

Cashner seemed like a perfect fit to face the Brewers considering the Brewers were still fresh from facing Gerrit Cole’s 95 mph fastball on Sunday. Cashner is a similar type of pitcher. And by the third inning, the theory held true. The Brewers teed off.  Cashner hadn’t given up more than 2 runs in any start this year; 4 games, 28 innings, 19 hits allowed, and only 4 earned runs. He was just as good last season, but not during Monday night’s third inning.

Brewer’s Pitcher Wily Peralta greeted him with a double and Scooter Gennett followed with a triple. Ryan Braun hit a sac fly. Aramis Ramirez launched a solo home run to dead center. Brewers with a 3-0 lead.

the Brewer's bullpen; happyyoungster.com

the Brewer’s bullpen; happyyoungster.com

But Peralta let the Padres back in the game the following inning and it wasn’t cheap. Padre batters made solid contact, scoring two runs. Brewers score again in the 5th.  Padres get another run in the 7th. Time for the Brewers bullpen and once again they shut it down. This is probably the biggest surprise thus far this season. The bullpen of the Brewers has been lights out.

The game was won in the seventh inning as it often is. Padres had runners on second and third with one out, trailing 4-3. Enter lefty Will Smith. It’s become very clear to Brewer fans why the team traded one of the most under rated lead off hitters in baseball -Norichika Aoki for an unknown southpaw-Will Smith. He worked out of the jam, getting a pop out and a K on his bread and butter slider.

K-rod earned his 4th save in as many days. Brewers win 4-3.

Other than the bullpen there aren’t that many surprises to the Brewers 15-5 start; feels more like objectives being reached early on anyway.

Scooter Gennett played second base last year, replacing Rickie Weeks who is still locked up in a contract and not hitting his own weight. Weeks has never been an A defender. It’s a bit sad because Weeks has meant a lot to the franchise, but Gennett is a Wally Backman nose to the grindstone battler. Great range, good throwing arms and .300 hitter and he chews as much gum as Clint Hurdle.

There was no first baseman on this team. Enter cast-off’s Mark Reynolds and Lyle Overbay on the cheap. The Reynolds home runs are predictable. It’s his defense that’s so impressive.

Aramis Ramirez is healthy again, but the big surprise is the bullpen, especially the rapid evolution of Tyler Thornburg and Will Smith, not to mention the effective Loogy-ness of  Zach Duke, and then there’s the K-Rod who hasn’t given up an earned run.

The pitching brought the Brewers to 15-5 and that same pitching will guide the ship going forward.

 

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Author: Steve Myers

I grew up in Milwaukee and have been a Milwaukee Brewers baseball fan for as long as I can remember.

16 thoughts on “don’t know much about San Diego

  1. You’re right about the Pads being obscure. I just tried to put together a team (one guy at each position and two pitchers) and struck out at short and second. I did get to add in Tony Gwynn, which makes up of a lot of other problems.
    v

    • I’m not very objective in that Mark Loretta played most of his career as a Brewer, but he was way above average for three years as the Padres second baseman. And at short, I guess Templeton, but slim pickins for sure.

  2. How about Bip Roberts at second? This was always am entertaining interview about Bevcqua.

    • There’s a former pitcher-Lasorda who never won a game in the majors telling it like it is, but he did lose 4 games as an Athletic and threw 3 wild pitches in an inning. .

      • He lost those 4 games 1956 with a horrible 6.15 ERA! I never knew that. I guess I should polish up my worthless baseball knowledge a bit. 🙂

      • comes in handy for trivia contests. I’m hoping to win a vacuum cleaner one day.

      • I won a pitcher of beer at a sports bar a while back, and it was a nightmare. I knew I would win because most “sports fans” don’t really know shit. My friends mother got so wasted (she was hammered before) that she fell off her stool and we got 86’ed. I think my winning pitcher threw her over the top. Quite a night….fucking hilarious.

      • shashing. there’s one for the scrap mind. I hope Momma got back to her feet and enjoyed another round.

  3. I don’t know anything at all about San Diego. I’m not even sure where it is. You might find that hard to believe.

  4. Travis Snyder new black eye might be a good image to go with the Smiths’ “Big Mouth” on your music blog.

    • Maldonado got 5 games. That’s his regular time between starts anyway, but three games for Gomez is a bit of an ouch especially since the regular backup and equally as good a defender-Logan Shaefer is on the DL, but Gomez is gonna appeal the suspension and so are Snider and Martin, so who knows when it will go into effect, if at all.

      We’re on the same page with regards to jukebox dj. I had something in mind for the music blog on the Gomez stop and stare incident, but from a different angle than the Smiths. I can only write about bands and songs that make me crazy in a good way. I never felt that way about the Smiths, not yet anyway.

  5. My favorite Kurt Bevacqua quote, when he was talking about playing for Dick Williams–“It’s like being Muammar Gaddafi’s chef. Every meal better be good.”

    • No doubt a classic, one I had never heard before, has me wondering about the door bursting wide open for some chef boyardee terrorist activities.

      • Terrorist activities in retaliation to those pasta with parsley plates for 23 dollars. With 9 Tim Stauffer clones and Petco Park’s outfield fences moved back to the original dimension plus another 40 feet, we’ll bore the opposition to sleep.

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