Today I asked a scout what he thought of how the Padres are playing. The first player he mentioned was Alexi Amarista. "He looks like he can be a true super-utility man, the kind of player who is really valuable in the National League, " said the scout. "He's stronger than I realized. He was a heck of a pick-up." The scout said first baseman Yonder Alonso has "tightened his swing a little," for the better.
For the American League-bound Astros, tonight's game could be their last one in San Diego for several years. The Astros were in the National League West when the Padres entered the major leagues in 1969 and remained a division rival through 1993. These Padres (38-55) probably would welcome more games against Houston, which is 34 and 58.