With a big Fourth of July win yesterday, the Padres continue to inch closer to the .500 mark. Each of the starting nine collected at least one hit in yesterday’s win, handing Tim Lincecum his seventh loss of the season. Yesterday was also interesting in that each of the Padres pitchers was credited with either a win (Richard), hold (Frieri, Spence, Qualls, Adams) or save (Bell). The four holds match the most by any team this season (14th time) and tie for the most ever in a single game by the Padres (6th time).
The Friars are 9-3 in their last 12 tilts and have not lost consecutive games since June 19-20. Over the current 12-game stretch, the Pads are posting a 2.68 ERA (31 ER/104.0 IP) and have held opponents to three or fewer runs in 10 of those contests (including two shutouts). The starting rotation has been credited with seven of the nine wins, recording a 2.57 ERA (20 ER/70.0 IP).
On the offensive side, Cameron Maybin (.341), Chase Headley (.368) and Will Venable (.323) are each hitting over .300 during the 12-game stretch.
After being optioned to Triple-A Tucson in late May, Venable has had a strong showing in his return to the Big Leagues. Since beening recalled on June 9, Venable is hitting .326 with a.385 OBP and .478 SLG (.863 OPS).
Reliever Josh Spence made his Major League debut last night, working a perfect ninth in the Padres 11-2 win over the Braves. The outing made Spence the seventh player to make his Big League debut with the Friars this season, joining Cedric Hunter, Blake Tekotte, Logan Forsythe, Anthony Rizzo, Anthony Bass and Evan Scribner.
Here is video of Spence striking out Jason Heyward, his first Major League batter faced: http://sandiego.padres.mlb.com/video/play.jsp?content_id=16252123
Tonight the Padres take on the Braves in the second of a three-game series. The game marks the eighth of nine tilts between the two clubs this season, with the Padres holding a 4-3 edge so far. A win tonight would clinch the season series against Atlanta for the first time since going 5-1 in 2005.
Dustin Moseley takes the hill tonight, looking for his third win of the season. Over his last five starts, he has gone 1-0 with a 2.37 ERA (8 ER/30.1 IP). Moseley will be facing the Braves for the second time this season.