Before we get to the recap, there was a great example of way I couldn't live in California. Earthquake. Stadium rocks. Fans cheer. Fans cheer? These people are crazy. There was a pretty big quiver in Rance Mulliniks' voice though. Calgary winters might be cold. Spring might not really resemble spring in any manner. But, when I wake up in the morning, I know the ground is going to stay where it is supposed to all day long. And, if it did move, we wouldn't cheer!
Anyway, that was much more like it. We got 12 hits. John Buck had 2 home runs and 3 RBI. Aaron Hill hit 3 doubles and 3 RBI. Lyle Overbay and Dewayne Wise (hitting leadoff, giving Fred Lewis the day off) had two hits each. The only starter not to get a hit was Vernon Wells (well and Shaun Marcum, but he took a walk). Admittedly, Jose Bautista's hit would have been an out if David Eckstein was of average height. We did strike out 11 times, but if that is the price we pay to get 6 runs, I'm quite willing to pay it.
Shaun Marcum pitched a good game. 7 innings 6 hits. He did give up 2 solo home runs (I didn't think home runs were supposed to happen at PETCO?). He gave up another run in the 7th, but it wasn't his fault. He gave up a lead off single, then got the double play ball he needed, but Alex Gonazalez booted it (Alex makes so many great plays, we feel ripped off when he misses one). Next batter singled on a soft line drive that, I felt, Vernon Wells should have caught, but it fell just in front of him. I've likely said this often enough, but I think Vernon goes back on a ball much better than he comes in on them. So Shaun has the bases loaded, with no one out when he could have been out of the inning. But he didn't panic. Shallow fly out. Gentle grounder to Edwin Encarnacion, that he might have been able to go home on, to stop the run, but took the safe out at first. Smart move. One more fly out and Marcum gets out of it with just the one run scoring and the lead still.
Cito took Marcum out for a pinch hitting in the top of the 8th, even with a 3 run lead and Marcum only at 91 pitches. Cito would have been open for second guessing if our pen blew the game. I don't think it was the wrong move, giving Marcum a gentle start, now and then, considering he is just back from Tommy John, isn't a bad idea.
Fortunately for Cito and for those of us that tire of losing, Scott Downs pitched a perfect 8th and Kevin Gregg, everyone's favorite closer, walked the first batter in the 9th, then got 2 strikeouts and a very soft ground out. Thanks for thinking about our blood pressure Kevin.
Padre catcher Yorvit Torrealba didn't enjoy his 9th inning strikeout. Admittedly, strike 3 was on the inside corner, but according to Game Day it was a strike. Yorvit went nuts, screamed and made contact with the umpire a few times. I'm sure a suspension is coming. Likely part of what brought on Yorvit's explosion was from back in the 2nd inning: Shaun Marcum took a 9 pitch walk, but Marcum, Yorvit and Jon Garland all thought ball 3 was strike 3. Marcum started walking away before the ball call, causing laughter on the bench. The Jays scored 2 more runs after that.
Jays of the Day are Buck (.239 WPA), Hill (.186) and Marcum (.094). No Suckage Jay.
After a few crappy games in a row, that game felt so good.
Tomorrow is another late start for you folks in the east. Brett Cecil (7-2, 3.22) goes against Matt Latos (6-4, 3.24).
The game thread was great again tonight. Try to join us if you can tomorrow.