The afternoon home-game that took place on August 16 against the Philadelphia Phillies, was hands-down one of the top games of the Padres’ 2017 season, if not number one.
The Friars sent Clayton Richard to the mound to see if he could lead the team to completing a three-game sweep of the series against the Phils. Indeed he did…in excellent fashion and with a little history-making help from Wil Myers.
Richard was able to achieve a complete game shutout. The left-hander gave up only three hits and one walk while striking out six and inducing 17 groundouts on 113 pitches. He looked extremely sharp and was able to keep the ball down for the majority of the game.
This was the first complete game shutout for the Padres since Andrew Cashner did it on September 15, 2014. It was the third of Richard’s career, but his first since 2012 .
The feel-good factor is what makes this game so special. Richard had a relatively successful first go around with the Padres from 2009-2013. Injury took it’s toll on Richard and he was eventually released by the team. When he returned at the end of the 2016 season, fans were pleasantly surprised with the production of the reinvented veteran who had adopted a lower arm slot and changed his game from punchouts to ground-ball induction. The culmination of the new Richard achieved critical mass on August 16.
After a year of making a case for himself, Richard was signed to a $6 million/two-year contract by the Padres on September 20. No doubt, his performance on August 16 had an impact on ownership’s decision to extend him.
As earlier mentioned, Myers provided some run support for Richard during the game.
In the fourth inning, Myers hit an RBI single to knock in Carlos Asuaje to make the score 1-0. Then he proceeded to steal three bases; second, third and home, to set the new team record for the most steals in a single inning.
In the sixth inning, Hunter Renfroe hit an RBI double to bring the score up to 3-0, which would be the final tally.
Again, without a doubt, this was one of the best games of the season. I’ll admit that I have it as my number one of the year. My only regret is that I didn’t join my dad and brother in watching it live at Petco Park.