Monday, June 18, 2007

Is Baltimore a formidable Padres' foe?

The Padres couldn’t be catching the Baltimore Orioles at a worse time for two reasons.

The Orioles bring an eight-game losing streak into the three-game series opener Tuesday night at Petco Park, and Jake Peavy is pitching for San Diego.

It sounds like the Orioles are getting the worst of it, but maybe not.

"The problem is, we’re getting our (butts) kicked," Kevin Millar said Sunday after Baltimore’s latest loss.

If, indeed, Joe Girardi becomes the Orioles’ new manager, things may turn around right away. Girardi is definitely a butt-kicker, as he proved last season by nearly leading the Florida Marlins into the playoffs with his dictatorial style.

The Peavy factor?

Yes, he is the best pitcher in the National League. But he’s at his worst against poor teams ... especially in front of small crowds at home.

Peavy suffered his only loss at home this season to the lowly Washington Nationals. He was on the hook at Washington for another loss before the Padres bailed him out with a couple of late runs.

Peavy at home against a horrible team with a new manager? It doesn’t sound good for the Padres.

1 comment:

Kevin said...

An interesting analysis. I think the larger factor in determining the outcome of Tuesday's ballgame from the Padres' side is the health of Kouzmanoff and M. Giles.

Balitmore is coming into the series without a their manager and will not have the benefit of a DH. We already know Jay Payton can't hit here; same goes for the increasingly fragile Ramon Hernandez (DL).

In addition, the Orioles are overbooked at corner infield and outfield (Huff, Millar, Mora, Gibbons, Markakis, Patteron and Payton). Without a DH, only 5 of them can start. The Petco factor creates large holes in this already shaky Baltimore lineup. Can they field a team to defend the spacious outfield and still hit here? Unlikely.