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Rea still learning from his mistakes for Padres

PHILADELPHIA -- It's one of those time honored baseball clichés that you never really know how good a player is until he faces some adversity.

No matter how much talent a rookie has, no matter how hard he has worked, and no matter how well he has pitched through the Minor Leagues, at some point the key will be the ability to handle adversity.

That's where Padres rookie Colin Rea, the No. 2 prospect in the Padres' system, finds himself after four major league starts, including Saturday's 4-3 loss to the Phillies.

"Colin is continuing to progress," Padres interim manager Pat Murphy said. "There are a lot of good things he learned today. I think you look for little things that he learned today. Jams that he was able to get out of like that [second inning] where he gave up two runs, let two more guys reach and then battle to get out of it. He made a few pitches that he made him pay for, but [give] credit to the Phillies."

Rea worked into the sixth inning in a game that certainly could have ended differently, at least in Rea's opinion. Add in the fact he picked up his first Major League double in the third, and Rea did plenty of good things to build on to go with mistakes that he certainly can learn from.

"I felt my stuff was pretty good," said Rea, who struck out four and had three perfect innings. "I made mistakes in big situations and they took advantage of it."

One of those mistakes came in the second, in which he surrendered a single to Ryan Howard and then a home run to Darnell Sweeney to open the inning. A double by Domonic Brown followed by a hit batter could have set the table for disaster, but Rea recorded the next three outs to keep the score at 2-0.

"That was definitely a positive," Rea said. "It's the same at any level. I have to execute my pitches, especially with situations like tonight with guys on base like tonight. That's basically it."

The second and more costly mistake came in the third when he gave up a two-out RBI double to No. 8 hitter Freddy Galvis and then a single to opposing pitcher Adam Morgan that put the Padres in a 4-2 hole.

"Colin learned something tonight," Murphy said. "There are little flashes that he's continuing to grow."

"He had the pitcher on deck -- who ended up hitting a single -- but you have to go after [Galvis]. That double hurt."

Michael Radano is a contributor to
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