Day 25: Splitting the squad
Update: 2:50 p.m.
PEORIA, Ariz. — So the Padres have another split-squad game today. There’s a few on the schedule this year, which is a little unusual. Not really sure why, other than the deals struck between the City of Peoria and the Padres (and similar deals between cities and the teams they host) might mandate that X amount of games be played in a ballpark.
Anyway, I thought I would provide a little insight as to how the Padres go about figuring out who goes where on days like today.
Manager Bud Black said that in today’s case, he wants newcomers Carlos Quentin and Yonder Alonso to see as many National League West Division teams as possible. That’s why those two will be in Scottsdale playing against the D-backs.
“I look at these two guys getting as much exposure to the National League West as possible,” Black said.
As for the players who are headed to Goodyear to face the Reds? Black sent a mostly heavy right-handed lineup there because the Reds are, apparently, offering what Black said was “a heavy dose of left-handed pitching).
Black said that some players have a preference — mostly pitches in this case — of not wanting to face division foes in Spring Training, especially later in March.
The Padres have typically played a lot of early games in April against NL West foes, so you might not see, say, projected starters getting too many looks in that last week against NL West teams here in Arizona.
“Early in spring, it’s not that big of a deal. But you look at the last week to 10 days, when the pitch count is getting to 90, 100 pitches and you’re playing teams early in the season, you want to make sure that doesn’t happen. You want to keep a pitcher away from that,” Black said.
Here’s the information on today’s games. As always, check back throughout the day for updates.
Padres (4-7) at D-backs (3-7), 1:05 p.m. Salt River Fields at Talking Stick, Scottsdale
Padres (4-7) at Reds (5-6), 1:05 p.m. Goodyear Ballpark
Radio/TV: XX 1700 (Ted Leitner, Jerry Coleman, Bob Scanlan). Tune in at 1 p.m. Note: Radio only from the game in Goodyear.
The lineups (vs. D-backs): Venable 8, Hudson 4, Headley 5, Quentin 7, Hundley 2, Alonso 3, Kotsay 9, Cabrera 6, Wieland 1.
The lineups (at Reds): Maybin 8, Parrino 6, Guzman 7, Blanks 0, Darnell 5, Baker 2, Liriano 9, Clark 3, Galvez 4.
The pitchers (vs. D-backs): Wieland 3, Brach 1 or 2, Thatcher 1, Frieri 1, Owings 1 or 2, Cashner 1.
The pitchers (at Reds): Richard 3, Kelly 3, De Paula 2, Vincent 1, Boxberger 1.
Updated: 10:05 a.m.
— RHP Matt Palmer has a mild hamstring strain and will miss a few days.
— 1B/OF Kyle Blanks and INF Everth Cabrera, as you can see from the the aforementioned lineups, are back. Blanks had a sore left hamstring and Cabrera had a sore right shoulder.
— LHP Josh Spence, apparently has a little arm issue, but he’ll pitch either today or tomorrow.
— Bud Black had some good things to say about RHP Anthony Bass. I’m beginning to think he’s got a good shot of making the Opening Day roster. Maybe use him like the Padres used Cory Luebke to start the season? We’ll see. But just an idea.
— Black talked about PF Jaff Decker, who has impressed in camp. Decker has adopted a more aggressive approach at the plate after being a guy who saw a lot of pitches (and took a lot of walks) early in his professional career. He’s been good so far, producing a .350/.435/.850 slash line.
That’s it for now. More later.
Update: 2:50 p.m.
— Nice outing for Padres pitcher Joe Wieland here in Scottsdale. He threw 32 pitches through three scoreless innings and Black let him go back out and start the fourth inning. He hit a batter and allowed a single by struck out Aaron Hill to end the threat and the inning. Two hits allowed, four strikeouts. You can see why the Padres were so high on him. And remember my Wieland to the Padres rotation by May prediction. Ha!
— The Padres got back to back home runs from Chase Headley and Carlos Quentin in the sixth inning. Those were the first home runs of the spring for each guy.
— Over in Goodyear, the Padres have erupted — yes, erupted I tell you — for eight runs in the first five innings against the Reds. Matt Clark hit a bomb as did Andy Parrino. Cameron Maybin had two hits, giving him five in his last three games after going 0-for-12 to start the season. Clayton Richard allowed two runs in three innings.
— Also, I wrote a story about how pleased the Padres are with pitcher Edinson Volquez. Here’s the link right here. Minimal effort needed on your part.
Corey Brock, MLB.com