Not once have they had a no-hitter. In fact, they are the only
team in the Major Leagues without a no-hitter.
But Andrew Cashner has thrown one-hit, complete-game shutouts in two
of his last five starts.
On Friday night, the 27-year-old right-hander held the Detroit
Tigers to a sixth-inning single by left fielder Rajai Davis as the
Padres defeated the Tigers 6-0 in the opener of a 10-game homestand
before 30,353 at Petco Park.
"I'm totally aware," Cashner responded Friday night when asked if he
knew that no Padres pitcher has ever thrown a no-hitter.
"That was a well-pitched game, as good as you will see," Padres
manager Bud Black said after Cashner had a career-high 11 strikeouts
against two walks. Seventy of his 108 pitches went for strikes, with
his fastball topping out at 99 1/2 mph and averaging 93 mph.
Davis' soft liner to center over the glove of leaping second baseman
Jedd Gyorko was not only the Tigers lone hit — it was the only time
they came close to a hit.
"Gyorko came closer than I thought he could on that dive," Davis
Cashner also got 13 outs on ground balls. Only three balls besides
Davis' hit were hit to the outfield.
"He had tremendous movement with command," Black said. "He had
movement along with change of speed on his fastball. They didn't hit
a lot of balls hard. You could see Cash's performance on the look of
the batters. He got called third strikes on the corner on pitches
that snapped back on the outside corner.
"Teams are going to have to start looking at Andrew Cashner."
"He dominated us," said Brad Ausmus, who worked in the Padres' front
office for three years before becoming the Tigers manager last
winter. "Cashner is not a household name, but he's very capable."
The Padres, who entered the game with a .209 team batting average
that was the third-lowest in the major leagues, got 13 hits,
including run-producing hits from two of their core hitters who
entered the game with identical 4-for-32 starts.
Third baseman Chase Headley hit a run-scoring double in the first
and a two-run homer and Gyorko preceded Headley's first-inning hit
with a run-scoring triple.
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But the night belonged to Cashner, acquired from the Chicago Cubs in
a 2012 trade for first baseman Anthony Rizzo.
Cashner retired the Tigers in order in seven of the nine innings and
set down 14 straight Tigers from the first to Davis' single in the
sixth. Cashner finished the game by retiring the last 10 hitters he
faced, starting with third baseman Miguel Cabrera's double-play
grounder to end the sixth. He threw a 95 mph fastball past Cabrera
for the game's final strike.
Last Sept. 16, Cashner faced the minimum 27 hitters in a one-hitter
in Pittsburgh. The only hit that night was a seventh-inning single
by Jose Tabata.
"I think this was bigger than Pittsburgh," Cashner said of Friday
night's performance. "With the guys in the Tigers' lineup, this was
a much bigger game. The biggest point of the game was the double
play by Cabrera on a slider. And taking something off my fastball is
giving me more movement."
NOTES: Padres CF Cameron Maybin, who suffered a ruptured left biceps
March 2, began a rehab assignment with Triple-A El Paso on Friday
night. Padres manager Bud Black says he needs at least 20 at-bats
before he can be promoted. ... LF Carlos Quentin, out since the last
week of spring training with a bone bruise to his left knee, is
working in the weight room and taking batting practice in the cage,
but he has not resumed baseball activities. ... The Tigers had
homered in each of the first seven games of the season, the only
time it has happened in the last century.
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