Bill Center, longtime sportswriter for U-T San Diego, is an employee of the Padres.As I was watching Clayton Richard wrap up his first complete-game shutout in five years Wednesday afternoon, my thoughts wandered back to the events earlier in the day.Just over 2 1/2 hours before the Padres took the
Bill Center, longtime sportswriter for U-T San Diego, is an employee of the Padres.
As I was watching Clayton Richard wrap up his first complete-game shutout in five years Wednesday afternoon, my thoughts wandered back to the events earlier in the day.
Just over 2 1/2 hours before the Padres took the field against the Phillies, Jered Weaver announced he was retiring from a game he loved because his body no longer allowed him to compete the way his mind desired.
Weaver is 34. Richard is 33.
Now, go back three years.
Jered Weaver won 18 games in 2014 with a 3.59 earned run average while starting 34 games for the Angels.
Richard didn't pitch an inning in the Major Leagues in 2014. Coming off two rounds of surgery, he made only four minor league appearances. His baseball career was on the ropes.
Here's the bottom line:
No one ever knows what is just around the corner in baseball - or any athletic endeavor for that matter. There are no promises on tomorrow.
Yes, Clayton Richard worked extremely hard to put his career back together after first experiencing shoulder problems in 2013.
But I doubt he worked much harder than Weaver, a three-time All-Star and 150-game winner in the American league -- whose game began to unravel in 2015 just about the same time that Richard began to rebuild his.
And there we were on Aug. 16, 2017.
10 a.m. - Jered Weaver puts out a statement announcing his 12-season career is over. "While I've been working hard to get back on the mound, my body just will not allow me to compete like I want to."
3:10 p.m. - Clayton Richard gets the final out - appropriately a ground out - to conclude his first complete-game shutout in five seasons.
Here's to both Jered Weaver and Clayton Richard. As their paths head in different directions, may both prosper.
-- The Padres are 10-5 at home since the All-Star break and 24-13 over the last 37 games at Petco Park.
-- Richard Wednesday threw the Padres' first complete-game shutout since RHP Andrew Cashner blanked the Phillies on Sept. 15, 2014. Richard lowered his earned run average from 5.14 to 4.84. Richard allowed three hits and a walk while striking out six and getting 18 outs on ground balls. Over his last three starts, Richard has allowed seven runs (three earned) on 16 hits and six walks with 16 strikeouts in 21 innings for an ERA of 1.23. During those three starts, his ERA has fallen from a season-high 5.40 to 4.84.
-- 1B William Myers became the first Padre to ever steal three bases in an inning in the fourth inning Wednesday. Perhaps more important to the big picture, Myers was also 2-for-2 with a double, two walks and a RBI - marking the first time since April 10th that he reached base four times in a game. Myers stole second, third and then home on the back-end of a double steal. Myers is also the third first baseman since 2000 to steal three bases in a game with Padre Ryan Klesko also doing it during the 2001 season. The last time a Padre stole home as part of a double steal was Jesus Guzman against the New York Mets on Aug. 10, 2011.
-- LF Cory Spangenberg extended his hitting streak to eight straight games with a bunt single in the sixth. The streak ties the longest in Spangenberg's career. Spangenberg is 13-for-31 (.419) with two doubles, a triple, four home runs, 10 RBIs and nine runs scored.
-- RF Hunter Renfroe was 2-for-3 Wednesday with an RBI double. It was the rookie's first multi-hit game since Aug. 6. In between, Renfroe went 3-for-26 with three walks and 13 strikeouts.