It was time for the Phillies annual takeover of Petco Park. There is little joy for Padres fans when this team comes to town. Coming into this series, the Phils had gone 22-4 in Petco Park and had an 11-game winning streak in the Pads' Park. Then there are the Phillies fans. Arrogant, angry fans wearing their pinkish-red jersey spouting obscenities at every turn. Ugh.
For game one on Thursday, we sat along the third baseline amongst the hoards of Phillies fans. We were excited to get our first look at rookie Joe Wieland starting for the Pads. After a very nervous looking first, Wieland calmed down and gave six solid innings with one earned run and seven Ks. The Padres unfortunately had another abysmal offensive performance striking out 11 times while getting shutout by Vance Worley and two relievers. We witnessed the 2nd vomiting incident of the season when a female Phillies fan in our row heaved all over the jacket of an unrelated Phillies fan next to her. Just like during the Dodgers series, the Petco Park maintenance crew did a thorough cleanup on the mess. They do a great job with this thankless task.
On Friday, we were back in the friendly confines of our normal 1st baseline seats. Volquez again was a bit wild but managed to get thru six innings scoreless. In the seventh, a misplayed bunt led to a bases loaded jam and the end of Volquez's day. Andrew Cashner again reached triple digits on the radar gun but gave up a couple of soft hits that allowed all three of the inherited runners to score. The Padres tepid offense only managed a run on six hits so the Phils winning streak at Petco ran to 13. The wonderful post game fireworks show eased the blow somewhat.
Saturday's game brought a big crowd to get free ballcaps and watch a duel between ace Roy Halladay and potential ace Corey Luebke. Halladay looked shaky early on and walked three Padres in a row. The O-Dog drove in a run on a ground out but still managed to look goofy by going in to first with a headfirst slide. Not only are headfirst slides dangerous and unnecessary (aren't little leaguers taught to run thru 1st?) but he managed to slide late so he kind of bounced off the top of 1st base. It was strange and awkward looking but then again it was the O-Dog.
The Pads tallied two on Halladay before scoring three on Phillies reliever Stutes. The Padres looked like they knew how to use Petco Park to their advantage by tripling twice and using the gaps. Luebke looked awesome going eight and shutting out the Phillies attack.
On Sunday, the defense for both teams was shaky. Alonzo got a double error in the first and Venable had a fielding error (#4 already this year - yikes!) while the Phillies had errors by Blanton, Savery and Thome. Pence had some adventures in right that won't appear as errors but gave the Padres some extra bases. Hundley kept his hitting hot by tripling past a diving Pence and homering to left. Another nice outing by Bass and the bullpen and we ended up with a series split. Phillies fans were left with a two game losing streak and a last place team. Perhaps this is a season in which they will need to focus on the Flyers.
|Is Deno striking out or Tebowing?|
|Volquez stares down his (unsuccessful) bunt|
|Deno checking out his hand after being HBP|
|Hamels coming unglued after two balk calls|
|Freddie Galvis singles on a bunt|
|Jim Thome at the plate|
|Cash hit 100mph but gave up a couple hits and got the blown save|
|Deno tries to leg one out|