Last year at this time, Odrisamer Despaigne was playing baseball for the Cuban national team. He defected during a European tournament in July 2013 and took up residency in Spain. In February, he was being showcased for MLB teams. In May, he signed a minor-league deal with the San Diego Padres.
We wouldn't tell you all that if Despaigne just showed up and flopped. He did the exact opposite, actually. He pitched seven scoreless innings, scattering four hits. Scoring a run off Despaigne proved to be harder than pronouncing his name (it's O-dress-sa-mehr Des-pawn-nyay, if that helps at all). The Padres beat the Giants 6-0, giving the boys from San Diego a nice story after what's been a rather tough week.
''It took me for surprise to be here,'' Despaigne said through an interpreter. ''It was a dream come true.''
What makes this even more surprising: Despaigne wasn't dominating hitters in the minors. In seven starts between Double-A and Triple-A, he had a 6.03 ERA. He wasn't that guy Monday night, and the Padres offense was about as good as it's been this month, matching their June high with six runs.
The Padres got two hits and RBIs from Everth Cabrera and Seth Smith. Catcher Yasmani Grandal, also a Cuban, had a hit and an RBI. Speaking of:
On the Giants' side, Matt Cain continued his struggles. He gave up seven hits and six runs, falling to 1-6 with a 4.82 ERA.
THE BLUE JAYS OFFENSE IS JUST FINE, THANKS
For one night at least, the Toronto Blue Jays showed there was no reason to worry about their injured lineup. Without Jose Bautista (mild hamstring strain) and Brett Lawrie (fractured finger), the first-place Jays lit up the New York Yankees, who were a game and a half back in the AL East coming into the contest.
The Blue Jays scored six runs in the second inning en route to an 8-3 victory. Adam Lind hit a three-run homer, and five players (including Lind and Edwin Encarnacion) had multiple hits.
MATT ADAMS GOES OFF FOR THE CARDINALS
Matt Adams drove in six runs as the St. Louis Cardinals pounded the Colorado Rockies 8-0. To put that in perspective, Adams drove in more runs than 13 MLB teams scored Monday night.
Adams hit a three-run homer, a solo homer and had a two-run single. His final line: 3-for-5 with two runs and six RBIs. It wasn't quite Chisenhall-esque, but it wasn't shabby at all.
''It's just a continuation of how I've felt recently,'' Adams said. ''The big thing that I'm happy about is I'm laying off the sliders and the curve balls from the lefties. I'm trying to make them come over the plate a little bit more instead of chasing what they want me to chase.''
It's also a continuation of how bad the Rockies have been lately. It was their seventh straight loss.
LOGAN MORRISON HAS HIMSELF A DAY TOO
The Seattle Mariners routed the Boston Red Sox 12-3, behind 12 hits from their offense and another solid start from ace Felix Hernandez. The Mariner who had the best night at the plate was Logan Morrison, who joined Matt Adams in the two-homer parade. Morrison was actually 4-for-4 with four RBIs and three runs scored. Well played, LoMo.
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