Well, it finally happened… the Pads won their first series of the season! And we only had to wait until May!
It started ominously enough, with Ryan Braun going bananas on Friar pitching in the opening game, to the tune of THREE homers and a triple. Seriously? Every replay I saw had the analysts saying “at Petco Park?” It can apparently be done. Of course, this was to be expected, since I featured a Braun card a few posts back. Stupid blog, sent the positive vibist to the wrong player!
Lesson learned. I was going to post some sweet looking Heath Bell cards and say that I hope he’s able to turn his rough start around, but since the Marlins are heading into San Diego this weekend, I’ll save that post for another day.
Game ball for the series has to go to Mark Kotsay, who hit the tie-breaking two run homerun in the bottom of the 8th against K-Rod (do people still call him that, and are they being ironic when/if they do?) in game number two, and had a double and an RBI in the rubber match. Good to see him dialing it up a notch and showing the power that everybody was expecting to see when the Pads signed him. Wait… we didn’t sign him for his power? The guy who was supposed to provide “veteran leadership” to a young club actually provided leadership through… example? Novel concept! Glad to see Mark making an impact and getting some playing time.
Here’s Mark’s 1998 Donruss card from his rookie year. What Marlins uni do you prefer, “retina-scorching teal”, or the current version? Difficult to say. Also, here's last year’s Topps card of Mark as a Brewer.
Over the summer, I saw a documentary on Texas Longhorn’s baseball coach Augie Garrido, and they interviewed Mark, who was one of his players from his days at Cal State Fullerton. They also interviewed current Padre closer Huston Street, who played for Garrido at UT. Good guys all around, had lots of complimentary things to say about Augie.
Let’s go Padres! Beat the Fish this weekend!