San Diego – Sadly, the Padres family is no longer undefeated in pink and mint.
Before the pitch show kicks off on Saturday afternoon, right-hander Joe Musgrove decided he’d like to wear the new City Connect team uniform on the hill for the first time. After all, Padres was undefeated in this uniform, having scored 21 points in three matches.
So the team rearranged its wardrobe, and Musgrove, who has blossomed into an ace since he first wore brown and gold, continued to appear in City Connect colors. But the Padres – who were accomplished by some (extremely) knockout luck and poor performance from their team – let a solid ace effort go to defeat in a 7-4 loss to the Petco Park Twins.
Here’s a look at three storylines from Saturday’s loss:
1) Hit them where not?
In the annals of misfortune on a baseball diamond, it will be hard to beat what happened at the bottom of the seventh inning on Saturday night.
San Diego trailed, 2-1, and equalized at second base in fast CJ Abrams form. Gorrickson Bruvar, the lead man, hooked up a 103 mph rocket that appeared to be issued to the right center field. It would have been easy to tie the match…if you hadn’t bumped into second base referee Jerry Lane in the process.
“Our player was in the game today,” Carlos Correa of the short-term Twins joked. “Jerry, he smoked, and he was in pain afterwards.”
Provar jumped, on his way to first base expecting to celebrate hitting the clutch base, and shrieked in frustration. Abrams, per rule 5.09(f), was forced to return to base two.
“This is disgusting,” said Provard. “This was our chance to tie the match there. … If the match was 2-2 there, it’s different.”
Abrams had no doubts that he would be.
“That’s a baseball hit, and I would definitely score,” he said.
Of course, even with Abrams being forced back to second base, the Padres had two men on board with one of them. But Mane Machado attacked and Eric Hosmer exited, ending the threat. After half a run, the twins ran on five runs, which made the game out of reach.
“We definitely built momentum from that,” Correa said. “It should have been a tie game, and all of a sudden we got a lead…and we started going crazy.”
Musgrove’s Saturday night version was not who – which jar. As the game progressed, he wasn’t nearly as sharp, not locating his broken pitches the way he normally would. Instead, Musgrove had to fight back.
Musgrove could not fight at all. He made his way to six innings of two-ball runs, hitting eight times and escaping jams regularly.
“They made him do several rounds, and he had to work really hard,” Padres manager Bob Melvin said. “When he had to give a big ground to get a big hit, he did it, against some strong players.”
The Padres like to have “no joe” every time, but they know that’s an unrealistic request. The fact that Musgrove can constantly transform like this starts when he doesn’t have his elite stuff – well, that’s why they’re so comfortable paying him accordingly.
3) Approximate width of Morigon
Expect the Padres to be among the most aggressive ahead of Tuesday’s trade deadline. That’s right. They’ve built a roster with some championship-caliber bits, but they also have some major flaws and some interesting trading chips.
One such chip is Adrian Morjon. Expect to hear the 23-year-old’s left-handed name mentioned a lot in the coming days – although if Padres’ business partners were watching on Saturday night, they might not have liked what they saw.
Morragon has endured the toughest outing since returning from Tommy John’s surgery last month. He came in with Padres trailing by a run in the eighth inning and exited after allowing four runs – including two in a lunar shot from Korea – during just one exit.
“His critical skills, in matches he’s done well, have been a little better,” Melvin said. “Today, it’s not quite as much. But it was six days off, so it could have an effect as well. He’s a little kid who’s still kind of finding his feet here, but [he] He’s got great stuff and he’d be a heck of a jug.”