Bill Center, longtime sportswriter for U-T San Diego, is an employee of the Padres.Jabari Blash is among the more physically impressive athletes ever to wear a Padres uniform. And the 6-foot-5, 230-pound outfielder is as powerful as he appears.Blash can drive the ball. He also has a decent eye for
Bill Center, longtime sportswriter for U-T San Diego, is an employee of the Padres.
Jabari Blash is among the more physically impressive athletes ever to wear a Padres uniform. And the 6-foot-5, 230-pound outfielder is as powerful as he appears.
Blash can drive the ball. He also has a decent eye for the difference between a strike and a ball, a commodity in short supply with San Diego this season.
But can he prosper as a Major Leaguer? Thus far, he hasn't. But he returned to the Padres from Triple-A El Paso Friday when the parent club placed right fielder Hunter Renfroe on the 10-day disabled list with a stiff neck.
Blash was tearing it up with El Paso, hitting .291 with 18 homers and 57 RBIs in 60 games for the Padres' Triple-A affiliate. He had also drawn 36 walks for a .407 on-base percentage.
Of course, Blash has a history of pummeling Triple-A pitching. In 122 games with El Paso over the past two seasons, Blash has 28 homers and 87 RBIs, while also reaching base 41 percent of the time. He has hit 62 Triple-A homers in 223 games.
But Blash has yet to prove himself to be a Major League Player. And Blash, who the Padres acquired in December 2015 as a Rule 5 Draft pick, is no spring chicken. He turned 28 on July 4.
Blash was 2-for-4 Friday night with a walk, a double and a RBI. Even his game-ending at-bat in the ninth wasn't a total disappointment. He lined out to right with the bases loaded to end a 5-4 loss to the Giants.
However, before returning to the Padres on Friday, Blash was 47-for-222 in 66 games with the Padres. That's a .212 mark with seven homers. He had 71 strikeouts and 20 walks.
Padres manager Andy Green is eager to see what Blash might do this time. "We've heard he was working on some things Mark McGwire had suggested before he went out to El Paso this time," Green said in a hopeful tone.
Blash is a personable young man. It'd be great if it worked out. But the clock is ticking.
• 2B Carlos Asuaje had a double in four at-bats Friday night to extend his hitting streak to a career-best six straight games. He is 8-for-23 (.348) during the streak with two doubles, a triple, three RBIs and two walks for a .400 on-base percentage. He has hit safely in 11 of his past 15 games since being promoted from El Paso on June 23.
• SS Erick Aybar is 8-for-21 (.381) with four doubles, two walks, two RBIs and four runs in his past six games. He now has 12 doubles on the season and has raised his batting average from .216 to .238 by going 13-for-36 (.361) in 11 games since June 28.
• LHP Clayton Richard is 0-2 and the Padres are 1-4 in his past five starts. Richard has a 6.83 ERA over the five starts, allowing 21 runs on 39 hits and 13 walks with 14 strikeouts in 27 2/3 innings. His season ERA has jumped from 4.30 to 4.75.
• Buster Posey's home run Friday night was the 10th of his career at Petco Park. The 429-foot drive to center tied him with five other players for the all-time lead among visitors. Other visiting players with 10 career homers at the Padres' home are Todd Helton, David LaRoche, Mark Reynolds, Pablo Sandoval and Chris Young.
• C Austin Hedges tied his career high with three assists Friday night against the Giants. He also had three assists on July 30, 2015, against the Mets in New York.