The San Diego Padres had a wild week, and several unsung heroes stood out.
The Friars were ravaged by the effects of COVID-19 protocols this past week. They were forced to play their series against the Colorado Rockies and St. Louis Cardinals without Fernando Tatis Jr., Wil Myers, Eric Hosmer, Jurickson Profar, and Jorge Mateo. Also, Drew Pomeranz went on the IL with a shoulder impingement.
Needless to say, nobody would have blamed the Padres if they would have floundered through the week and lost several games. However, this turned into a rallying cry for the club, and they exploded to a sparkling 5-1 record against their two foes this week, including a three-game sweep of the Cardinals at home over the weekend.
Up and down the organization, several players contributed to make this a successful week for the Padres and its affiliates.
Robbie Podorsky (Triple-A)
Podorsky continues to put up impressive numbers, even with getting the call-up to El Paso in the middle of the week. Due to the chaos with COVID at the big league level, El Paso was forced to make a flurry of moves, including promoting players from Double-A San Antonio. In his second game with the Chihuahuas, he went 3-for-4 with an RBI and run scored. On Sunday, he smacked his first career Triple-A home run, going 2-for-4.
He finished the week batting .333 with a .900 OPS and 134 wRC+.
Robbie Podorsky's first Triple-A HR is our first at home in 2021!!
— El Paso Chihuahuas (@epchihuahuas) May 16, 2021
The 27-year-old right-hander made his second start of the season on Saturday, and he did not disappoint. He tossed 6 2/3 shutout innings while striking out seven with just one walk and one hit. He lowered his season ERA to 0.77 after two starts.
Elliott continues to impress for High-A Fort Wayne. He made two starts this week, totaling 11 innings, and allowed just one earned run on three hits and one walk for a 0.82 ERA. On Sunday, he went six innings while striking out 13 batters. He owns a 0.60 ERA in three starts with a whopping 28 strikeouts, which currently leads the High-A Central.
When the Padres traded for Yu Darvish, they did not expect much offensive production from his personal catcher, Caratini. However, the backstop has impressed and taken advantage of extended playing time in San Diego. This week, he finally got the Friars on the board with their first grand slam of the season, re-igniting the “Slam Diego” mantra.
Grand Slam Diego by Victor Caratini 💥
— SI MLB (@si_mlb) May 12, 2021
He didn’t stop there. In three games this week, Caratini went 3-for-6 on the week with five RBI.
Talk about getting production from your catchers. Caratini launched a grand slam, and Nola had a career night on Saturday against the Cardinals. He went 3-for-5 with a three-run home run and a double, collecting six RBI, the most by a Padres hitter this year, aiding in the 13-3 shellacking of St. Louis. Overall for the week, Nola hit .353 with 1.088 OPS.
— Bally Sports San Diego (@BallySportsSD) May 16, 2021
Once again, Stammen is carrying the load of bridging the gap between the starter and the back end of the bullpen. He appeared in three games, totaling four innings. He did not allow a run and a 1.63 FIP.