Two games into a crucial three-game set against division rival San Francisco and the Padres just cannot seem to stop the bleeding. Their losing streak grew to five games after last night, and this month could very well be the finale of their disappointing 2021 season.
Losses Continue To Equal Losses
Fernando Tatis Jr. and the rest of the Padres offense seem to have finally gotten the memo about scoring more runs, but the starting rotation is not meeting them halfway. With Blake Snell and Chris Paddack on the injured list until or if the Padres secure a playoff spot, starters like Vince Velasquez and Jake Arrieta are being counted on to aid their team in relief. The problem here is that Velasquez is not a reliable starter in the clutch and Arrieta is so well past his prime that he has been cut by the club.
Another notable starter to mention here is Joe Musgrove, who gave up five earned runs in his previous stint on the bump, continuing his team’s downward spiral. The only highlight for this team in September is Tatis’s 40th home run of the season, giving him a career-high en route to the loss against San Francisco. Most importantly, he became just the 10th player to record forty home runs at age 22 or younger and is the only one to do so while playing a majority of games at shortstop.
I will admit, I was skeptical as to how Tatis would perform after coming back from his third stint on the IL this year, but he has certainly silenced many of the nay-sayers. The Padres superstar has been playing like an injury never occurred in the first place which can only give hope for the future of this organization. I never would have suspected in a million years that the Friars would be where they currently are in the standings given the monstrous offseason they put together.
It can also be hard to remember that the Friars were within five games of first place in the National League West back in July but now sit a measly six games out of the second NL Wild Card spot. Since the firing of Rothschild, the bullpen has been suffering and the signing of free agents or claims off waivers hasn’t made them any better. In doing so, the newly acquired players have not had enough time to become comfortable with their new office which has ultimately ended in poor relief outings.
With nearly two weeks left in the season, the Padres flirtation with missing the playoffs could soon become a full blown affair if they don’t hit the brakes. Thesse final eleven games could go one of two ways: they increase their losing streak and miss the playoffs or they win the reaminder of games to sneak into the final Wild Card spot. The best outcome would obviously be the latter but at this stage of the game, what more can Jayce Tinlger do to keep his team in one piece?
The Reds, Phillies, and Cardinals all sit ahead of San Diego with St. Louis currently cruising along on an 11-game win streak. Adding more fuel to the fire, Manny Machado and Tatis Jr. got into a heated argument in the dugout last week with Machado saying that “it’s not all about you” to the young star as he prepared to take the field. A lack of team chemistry, streaky offense, and injuries at the wrong time are only three ways to describe how a powerful team managed to squander away what could’ve an epic season.
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