The Padres started off the second half on a fantastic note, sweeping a 3 game series versus the D-Backs. I was lucky enough to go to one game, thanks to Hyun Young of Perpetual Padres Saga.
So first of all, Hyun Young had a contest. The Eckstein’s offered her 4 tickets, and she could only bring 3 people besides herself. 10 people entered the contest, and me, Kaybee (from Unfinished Business) and Hyun Young’s friend won the contest, so we got to go to the game. It was awesome.
We all met up in front of the VIP entrance at 3:30, and entered the stadium. We went to find out seats, (which were on field level, 21 rows up on the first base side) then tried for some autographs. Kaybee got Adrian Gonzalez’s and Chris Young’s, but i couldn’t quite get theirs. It was okay, though. We were walking back up to our seats when Angela, the head of the photograph crew at PETCO, came down to see us. She gave us a tour of the press box, which was absolutely amazing. I saw Dick Enberg and Andy Masur up there, we got to visit Jerry Coleman’s box, and more. It was awesome, and Angela was really nice to give us a tour of the press box.
After we toured the box, we watched batting practice for about an hour, then David Eckstein came out of the dugout. Hyun Young had a sign that said “Fear The Scrappy” and she got that signed. She introduced us to him, I shook his hand and he signed my baseball, which was awesome. He was really cool. After Eck talked with us, he went to go warm up his arm with Chase Headley. While we were watching the players warm up, and just before the lineups were announced, Eckstein’s wife, Ashley, showed up, and we all got to talk with her for like 4 innings, she was awesome, and i got to hear a lot of stuff about her and David’s life. All the stuff I did before the game and during the game i will never forget.
I was hoping that the Padres would score a lot of runs, because usually, when I go to a game, it’s a 2-1 or 3-2 game. I was lucky enough to see a high scoring game, with some rare moments.
In the first inning, the Padres broke through on an RBI single by Yorvit Torreabla. This guy has been a tremendous addition to the ballclub.
In the top of the 3rd inning, the D-Backs offense broke through against Clayton Richard, scoring 3 runs highlighted by a couple of RBI base knocks.
In the bottom of the 3rd, though, then Padres got those runs right back. Jerry Hairston Jr. led off the inning with his 7th big fly of the season. After Eck and A-Gon were retired, Chase Headley walked. Yorvit Torreabla promptly smoked one over the left field fence, making it 4-3 Friars.
In the top of the 4th, Chris Young hit a solo shot for the D-Backs, banging off the second deck, making it a tie ballgame.
Clayton settled down after that home run, though. And in the bottom of the 5th, Adrian Gonzalez went yard to dead center field, giving the Padres a 5-4 lead.
In the bottom of the 6th, the first two Padres were retired in order. Tony Gwynn then hit a sinking line drive to left field, Rusty Ryal dived….. and could not make the grab! The ball rolled all the way to the wall, and everyone in the crowd was rooting Tony on, he rounded second, rounded third, the throw home…. SAFE!!! An inside the park home run! Everyone, including me in the ballpark was going absolutely crazy. Tony is the first player since Jimmy Rollins in 04 to hit 2 inside the park home runs in the same season.
The Diamondbacks made it interesting in the 8th, though. They got an RBI single by Justin Upton to make it 6-5, and Upton stole second shortly thereafter. Mark Reynolds then grounded out, and Joe Thatcher, the lefty specialist, came in to K Adam LaRoche. After 6 1/2, it was 6-5 Padres.
In the bottom of the 7th, with 2 out, Adrian Gonzalez walked. Chase Headley came up, and drove one into left center field. Justin Upton took a bad route to the ball, and the ball got past him and rolled all the way to the wall, and Adrian Gonzalez was chugging around the basepaths and scored easily, as Chase Headley had a stand up triple. Yorvit Torreabla then surprised everyone, laying down a perfect bunt and beating the throw to first to make it 8-5.
Luke Gregerson got a 1-2-3 inning in the 8th, and Heath came into the 9th. He came in to face the 8-9-1 hitters, and he truly “blew them away” as his entrance song is. Padres win 8-5!!!
I had an awesome time at the game. The crowd was electric, it was all around a great experience. Thank you Hyun Young for the ticket, it was awesome!
Today the Padres have an off day, but head over to Atlanta to take on the braves in a 3 game set.