Published November 20, 2014
San Diego Padres reliever Mike Adams is one out away from a virtual perfect game.
The right-hander has retired 26 consecutive batters over a span of nine games. He has retired 27 of 28 on the year.
The lone blemish on his record is a solo home run off the bat of St. Louis Cardinals star Matt Holliday, which came on opening day.
"That was a good pitch, too," Padres manager Bud Black recalled. "Great pitch, down and away."
Adams and the Padres got an unexpected day off when Tuesday night's game against the Chicago Cubs was postponed because of inclement weather. The forecast called for heavy rain and wind chills in the 20s.
The game will be made up as a part of a day-night doubleheader on Wednesday. The first game will start at 1:20 p.m. and the second game will begin at 6:05 p.m.
Adams is one of four Padres pitchers who has allowed just one earned run on the year, with Luke Gregerson, Chad Qualls and closer Heath Bell being the other three.
While Black is thrilled with the performance of his bullpen early in the season, he sees something special in Adams.
"Mike has a great ability to continue to improve his arsenal, yet maintain his strengths," Black said. "He has everything you look for in a late-inning relief pitcher."
Now if Black could just figure out his hitters.
Dustin Moseley is the quintessential victim of the Padres offense this year, as he has lost all three of his starts, but hasn't been charged with more than two earned runs in any of them. He is 0-3 with a 1.83 ERA and the Padres have been shut out in all three starts.
"It can be a frustration with certain pitchers," Black said. "But in our case with (Moseley ... he can handle it, he's mentally tough."
Moseley will pitch the first game of the day-night doubleheader. He was set to start Tuesday night.
Aaron Harang, 3-0 this year thanks to a little run support, will pitch the nightcap.
Cubs slugger Carlos Pena is getting a firsthand look at the unique weather at Wrigley Field, and while the conditions may not be conducive to his style, he said he's not daunted.
With winds blowing in at 10-15 mph Monday, Pena came up in the bottom of the ninth inning in a scoreless game and crunched a ball to left field that would have left any park on a normal day.
Instead of becoming Pena's first home run of the season, the ball hit a wall of air and fell into Ryan Ludwick's glove, short of the warning track, sending the game into extra innings. The Cubs beat the Padres 1-0 in the 10th.
"I killed that ball. I crushed it," Pena said Tuesday. "Wind can be very devastating. I know I hit two balls that should have been home runs (Monday)."
Pena is hitting just .214 through the first 16 games with his new ballclub, but isn't letting the numbers get to him.
"I've hit the ball well enough to have a few (home runs), three or four," he said. "I know I'm swinging the bat pretty well even though the numbers don't say so. I have to be wise. I can't let that stuff affect my confidence."
Pena hit .196 with 28 homers last season with Tampa Bay after averaging 39 home runs in his previous three years.
With gusting winds and abnormally cold temperatures, Cubs manager Mike Quade said the wet conditions made it too tough.
"You don't want to play in weather like this," he said. "Wind and cold are fine. If we didn't have the rain, it would have just been another cool night."
The biggest problem with the inclement weather isn't actually the weather, according to Quade, it's the opponent.
"It's just unfortunate that there's a West Coast club here," he said of the Padres, who only visit Wrigley once this year. "Common (days off) are real ugly."
Matt Garza will pitch the first game for the Cubs. James Russell, who was supposed to pitch Tuesday, will take the second game.
Quade set it up that way in hopes that Garza will eat up innings to take some pressure off the bullpen in the second game.
"We're in about the best shape we can be in to deal with this," Quade said of his eight-man bullpen. "I guess we'll find out tomorrow."
NOTES: Cubs RHP Andrew Cashner (shoulder) and RHP Randy Wells (forearm) will both start throwing programs Friday and be reevaluated at the end of the homestand, the team announced Tuesday. There is still not timetable for either pitcher's rehab schedule or for their return.