Tuesday, April 10, 2007

Boobarry Night at PETCO

My own Padres jersey--a gift from son Kellen Compared to last year’s flying syringes, Boobarry Night this year was rather tame. Low scoring, low hitting, it was all about executing the baseball script. With a strange mixture of ex-Padres (Bochy, Flannery, Roberts and others) and traditional Giant foes (Durham and Vizquel both made hit-robbing plays, as well as Roberts’ amazing running catch to the wall in center field), the night took on a “Who are we” and “Who are you” feeling. Barry was a non-factor, even watching him rattle about the left-field corner chasing down Greenie’s double in the 7th (it was a solid double even without the rattling). Kahlil Greene’s long hit proved to be the start of the lone run of the game, helped along by Russell Branyan’s walk and Jose Cruz Jr.’s sacrifice bunt to move the runners up a base, putting Greene on third. Jeff Blum, frequently good for game-shaping offense, delivered a sacrifice fly to score Greene. His long-out fly ball was barely foul, but perhaps too close to let drop by Winn in right field.

Padre starter Chris Young went seven innings (good for the win) and the Padre bull pen continued their scoreless innings stretch (20 2/3 innings and counting), with Cla Meredith and Trevor Hoffman posting zeros each for an inning. Giant pitching was also excellent, with Giant Cain throwing a two-hitter but taking the loss.

For me, two moments stand out from last night. One, it was really nice (really, really) to have a manager call for a bunt (note: non-pitcher up at bat) with two on and no outs: a game-winning decision, no doubt. Bud Black is not Bruce Bochy. Two, long-time Padre player, coach, and announcer Tim Flannery coaching third base for the Giants, seemed uncomfortable during the raucous Trevor Time, a celebrated Padre home field tradition before Trevor takes the mound in a save situation. Our seats just on the left-field side of third (and aided by binocs) revealed a bit of pacing and squirming from Tim during Hells Bells.

The other nicety about this year’s Padres? Two sets of brothers populate the roster: Marcus and Brian Giles and Glenn and Trevor Hoffman. From the right field bleacher seats where I was sitting on Sunday (thanks for the tickets, Rob), a very cool site line shows Giles number 24 in the foreground and Giles number 22 at second. I wish I had carted a long lens on Sunday to frame that image!

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