Spring training '21: New year, but COVID-19 protocols remain
FILE - In this Feb. 18, 2014, file photo, Atlanta Braves batting helmets sits on the field under a shining sun during a spring training baseball workout in Kissimmee, Fla. Major League Baseball revamped its spring training exhibition schedule because of the pandemic, cutting travel for Florida-based teams in an effort to avoid the novel coronavirus, the league announced Friday, Feb. 12, 2021. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon, File)NEW YORK – Completing the 2020 season required MLB to rewrite its rule book. Offers by MLB to delay opening day were rejected by the players' association last month, defaulting the league into an on-time start. The Grapefruit League schedule was reworked to limit travel, and clubs won’t play exhibitions against local colleges — usually a spring staple. MLB has claimed billions in losses after playing the 2020 season almost entirely without fans, and free agents were met by a sluggish market this winter.
Tatis, Padres have to wait till next year as Dodgers sweep
(AP Photo/Tony Gutierrez)ARLINGTON, Texas – Fernando Tatis Jr. bent backward from his knees and stared skyward after his wild throw became San Diego's playoff-high fifth error and gave the Los Angeles Dodgers the tying run. The 21-year-old budding superstar and the rest of the Padres will have to wait at least another year for the club's first trip past the National League Division Series since 1998. The Padres couldn't add to their majors-leading seven grand slams from the regular season, although Jake Cronenworth's walk and Trent Grisham's infield single with the bases loaded gave the Padres a brief 2-1 lead in the second. Tatis grounded weakly to third base and finished the series 2 of 11. Trevor Rosenthal, gave up a pair of two-run hits in the ninth when he became the Padres' 11th pitcher, two more than the previous high.
9 Padres pitchers blank Cardinals 4-0 in Game 3, reach NLDS
San Diego Padres' Fernando Tatis Jr., center, celebrates with teammates after the Padres defeated the St. Louis Cardinals 4-0 in Game 3 of a National League wild-card baseball series Friday, Oct. 2, 2020, in San Diego. San Diego became the first team in baseball history to use eight or more pitchers in three straight postseason games. The Padres rewarded their long-suffering fans by winning one of the most meaningful games of any kind in San Diego in a long time. The city’s only major professional championship remains the San Diego Chargers’ 1963 AFL title. The Padres lost 4-1 to the Detroit Tigers in the 1984 World Series and were swept by the New York Yankees in the 1998 Fall Classic.
Tatis, Myers homer twice, Padres stay alive with 11-9 win
(AP Photo/Gregory Bull)SAN DIEGO – Fernando Tatis Jr. had been waiting for a breakout game, and boy did “El Niño” get it. Wil Myers also homered twice and Manny Machado connected, but Tatis — with his signature exuberance and flair — was the one who carried the party at empty Petco Park. It was the 23rd comeback win of 2020 for the close-knit Padres, who have pushed each other all year. “I feel like we needed that big swing for the entire team to get us going," Tatis said of his first homer. It was the Padres’ first postseason win at Petco Park, which opened in 2004.
Nationals in a hole, and this year they're short on time
Washington Nationals' Carter Kieboom walks away after popping out to end a baseball game against the Atlanta Braves, Sunday, Sept. 6, 2020, in Atlanta. (AP Photo/John Amis)For a second straight season, the Washington Nationals are off to an awful start. CUTTING IT CLOSEWhile the Nationals have struggled from the start, the New York Yankees figured to be in the clear for a postseason spot after their 16-6 start. In 1993, San Diego executed an infamous fire sale, dealing Fred McGriff and Gary Sheffield in the middle of the season. He would go on to become a six-time All-Star for San Diego and, eventually, a Hall of Famer.
LEADING OFF: Pads upgrade 'pen, Mets-Yanks play 2 again
The San Diego Padres acquired the reliever from Kansas City on Saturday for outfielder Edward Olivares and a player to be named. The 30-year-old Rosenthal has a 3.29 ERA and seven saves after struggling with injuries and poor performance in recent years. The Mets plan to start righty Rick Porcello (1-4, 6.43 ERA) and converted closer Seth Lugo (1-2, 2.03). That year, he became the only player to hit for the cycle in a postseason game. They made the move with infielder Starlin Castro expected to miss the rest of the season with a broken wrist.