Yesterday marked ten days out from the 2015 regular season opener and the Padres celebrated with a fun little comeback win over the division rival Rockies. James Shields struggled in his final Spring start, giving up five runs in his 4-1/3-frame outing. One of those runs resulted from a bad pickoff attempt by Shields and two more came home thanks to a fielding error by Yonder Alonso. Overall it wasn't a great night for San Diego's defense.
The offense also capitalized on errors by the Rockies defense. In the bottom of the third, a throwing error by former Friar Nick Hundley allowed Alonso to come home. Two innings later, down by three runs, Will Middlebrooks hit an RBI single that allowed Abraham Almonte to get to third base. Almonte then scored on a wild pitch by Rockies reliever Jairo Diaz to bring the Padres within a run.
The score remained 5-4 in favor of Colorado until the bottom of the 8th. Will Venable, in his second at-bat of the night, hit a 2 RBI double - his third Vendouble of the Spring - driving home the tying and go-ahead runs. He later scored an insurance run on a single by Yangervis Solarte.
The Padres collected 14 hits against Rockies pitching and all but three of the 16 San Diego hitters who came to the plate got on base. Alonso, Middlebrooks, Matt Kemp, and Alexi Amarista had two hits each. Following Shields' outing, the Friars relief corps combined for only three hits allowed in 4 2/3 scoreless innings, with Shawn Kelley getting the win and Brandon Maurer notching his first save.