San Diego Padres Proving Their Offense Is Not Completely Useless

Drake SmithContributor IIIMay 17, 2011

Cameron Maybin and his Padres teammates have had a lot to celebrate recently.
Cameron Maybin and his Padres teammates have had a lot to celebrate recently.Christian Petersen/Getty Images

The date was May 10 and the San Diego Padres were looking to be their usual, offensively-incapable selves during a routine game against Milwaukee at Miller Park.

Trailing 8-0 in the sixth inning, all seemed predictably lost at this point for the Padres, who at the time were 14-21 on the season, in addition to having the worst batting average and lowest run total in all of MLB.

Then they started to score some runs.

Although the Padres lost the game 8-6 after multiple late-inning rallies, it seemed as if the tide could turn for San Diego, who had been looking for any kind of spark to get the anemic offense off the ground.

Thus began a current six-game stretch in which the Padres have averaged nearly nine runs per game, going 4-2 in that time (4-1 if you want to erase the aforementioned Milwaukee game).

San Diego followed the 8-6 loss by torching the Brewers for 13 runs in a victory the following afternoon. They then headed off to Denver to face the Rockies, a team that has long been a thorn in the Padres' collective side.

The Padres suffered a familiar fate in the series opener on Friday night, although still managed to plate seven runs in a 12-7 defeat.

The offense showed no signs of slowing down and contributions were coming from everywhere.

Saturday afternoon looked to be a typical Padres-Rockies stinker at the hands of the Rocks, as they led 7-1 entering the seventh inning. Then again, in a fashion Padres fans are rarely accustomed to seeing, the team manufactured a comeback—a large one.

Capped off by former Rockie Brad Hawpe's go-ahead two-run shot in the top of the ninth, the Padres were on their way to a shocking 9-7 comeback victory in Denver, which saw them plate eight runs in the final three innings.

The trend continued the following day, as the Friars dumped Colorado 8-2 to win the series at Coors Field.

A fate that is none-too-familiar for Padres fans.

Last night the Padres showed no signs of stopping in Arizona, as San Diego jumped out early and often en route to a 8-4 win against another divisional opponent to, surprisingly, find themselves sitting only 4.5 games back and out of the NL West cellar.

Brad Hawpe and Cameron Maybin have been two of the main reasons behind the recent San Diego surge.

Hawpe, who was hitting under .200 until recently, actually has the second-best batting average in the National League since April 25th at nearly .360, and Maybin has raised his batting average 41 points to .273 during this six-game stretch.

Can the Padres continue the trend? Of course, that remains to be seen, but the one thing Padres fans would love to see more than anything else is consistent hitting and the ability to manufacture runs. The entire league knows they have the pitching to support a decent offense.

That philosophy saw them get to 90 wins last year. Time will tell how many it can earn this year, although the last week gives reason to be cautiously optimistic.