Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Seamhead stuff

* I wonder if Bud Black regrets not subbing David Eckstein for Everth Cabrera tonight after the Padres went ahead 2-1 in the seventh inning. Eckstein is having a sharp year defensively. I'm told he was available and had no calf issues. I'm hedging my comments here because I wasn't at the game. Was a bit odd to see though. Black tends to favor defensive moves. Baseball being baseball, the ball found Cabrera twice in the inning.

* Don't put all of the defeat on Cabrera's two miscues (plus, shortstop Miguel Tejada blamed himself for not catching Cabrera's hot, slightly wide throw). Luke Gregerson threw a fat slider to a hitter with slider-batspeed, and there went the grand slam. Hard to fault Gregerson for using his slider a lot, the pitch has been unhittable for most of the year, but his fastball may be suffering from underuse. The trouble began with a leadoff walk to Mark Reynolds, who saw five sliders in the at-bat.

* The Tattoed One has become must-see TV, unless you can get to the game in person. Wow.

* The only hitter who seemed to scare Latos at all is the only hitter who hurt him. Latos was wary of giving Chris Young a decent fastball in their two earlier duels, then misplaced a 3-1 fastball in their third meeting. Great praise Young for the home run. It was the only decent pitch he saw, and it was 95 mph.

* Best at-bat by the Padres may have been Matt Stairs' pinch single, off the sixth pitch of the at-bat.

* Nifty game defensively by Arizona's outfielders, who played well throughout the series. The Phillies played a great series defensively in sweeping the Padres last weekend.

* If you've read this blog regularly, you know I criticized the Padres' baserunning even when they were winning. We saw another blunder tonight when Chase Headley was trapped off first base. Then Nick Hundley took an 0-2 cookie for strike three.

* The injuries are starting to take a toll. Hundley is playing more because Yorvit Torrealba's back is ailing. Hundley had a tough game tonight. Jerry Hairston Jr.'s absence also has hurt.

* Arizona's starting pitcher, Barry Enright, gave up several blasts but kept throwing strikes. All of his pitches appear to be fringe average or below average. Afraid, he isn't.

* Just a guess here, but it looks like interim manager Kirk Gibson has smartened and toughened the Diamondbacks. Wrote about him two months ago and would like to see the Diamondbacks keep him in the job.

* The Rockies' schedule this month is tougher than the Padres', and includes Thursday's game in Denver against the Phillies, preceded by tonight's game in San Francisco. So, the Rockies will be tired when they face the Padres and rookie Cory Luebke on Friday.

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