This wasn’t the opening day that Edinson Volquez or the San Diego Padres had hoped for in 2013. Volquez lasted only three innings while surrendering six runs (all earned) and walking three New York Mets batters, while the Padres fell to the Mets 11-2 at Citi Field.
Volquez struggled with his control starting in the second inning, and it never got better until he was finally taken out in the bottom of the fourth by manager Bud Black after failing to record an out in his final frame.
In 2012, Volquez lead the National League in walks with 105. This was something that Volquez and the Padres knew he would have to correct in 2013 for him to have any of the success that he enjoyed with the Cincinnati Reds in 2008 when he went 17-6 with a 3.21 ERA. That day may come for Volquez, but it was certainly not today.
Volquez faced 19 batters Monday and threw first pitch strikes to only seven of them. Volquez was wild in the strike zone as well, consistently missing his spots and getting hit hard especially when he pitched out of the stretch, which was often.
The end finally came for Volquez when he surrendered a fourth-inning walk to opposing pitcher Jonathon Niese on four pitches and then a double to Mets leadoff hitter Colin Cowgill.
While it was as bad an opening day that the Padres and Volquez could have possibly imagined, it is only one game and the hope is that Black and pitching coach Darren Balsley can help correct some of the problems that continue to plague Volquez, especially when he is pitching out of the stretch.
The Padres will have tomorrow off before taking on the Mets Wednesday and Thursday to finish out the three-game series in New York.