Bud Black realizes that as manager of the San Diego Padres, he’s not running the bases, pitching the ball and swinging the bat, but he needs to show some leadership from the dugout in getting the Padres to click on all cylinders again after a horrible road trip in which they were 1-9 and have suddenly fallen to 40-49 in the win-loss column.
They were swept by the Washington Nationals, a quality team for sure, but getting swept is not a good idea for teams trying to contend for divisional crowns. The Padres had pulled to within a game of first place and seemed to have momentum on their side. It appeared that the pitching was coming around and that, despite some key injuries, they were able to hold their own.
The Padres are 2-12 in their last 14. Returning home can only help. It’s going to have to help out or the Padres’ season will be in a tailspin if it isn’t already. Pitching is something Black and his staff need to turn around in a hurry. On Sunday, in an 11-7 loss, starter Robbie Erlin allowed nine earned runs in four innings. That type of pitching performance just isn’t going to cut it.
A string of solid pitching performances by Padre starters is what Black and his staff need to get things back on track.
If they can get some key wins before All-Star break, the Padres can get back into the pennant race. Otherwise, it will be a long second half of the season.