Faries Hits Big Triple for Padres


Rookie Paul Faries walked into the clubhouse Saturday afternoon, took a casual glance at the lineup posted on the wall, stopped and looked again. That was his name atop the lineup. He was starting at second base and batting leadoff.

It was the only change in the Padre lineup after the team was shut out the previous night. Padre Manager Greg Riddoch said he simply wanted to give Bip Roberts a day off after starting the past 11 games.

Of course, the fact that Roberts was 0-for-12 in his career off Dodger starter Tim Belcher might have had something to do with it, too.


So, considering the Padres’ karma of late, who do you think was the star in their 5-3 victory over the Dodgers in front of 39,335 at San Diego Jack Murphy Stadium?

Yes, with his clean-shaven, Richie Cunningham face, there was Faries surrounded by reporters in the middle of the clubhouse, answering question after question about his two-run, seventh-inning triple that triggered the Padres’ comeback and his game-saving catch in the ninth.

“I was pretty excited just to get out there and play,” Faries said. “You almost get used to sitting on the bench.”

And if it wasn’t enough for Faries to be a hero on the field, he could become popular around these parts with his Dodger-bashing comments afterwards.

“Growing up in the Bay Area,” he said, “I was a Giants’ fan. I didn’t care too much for the Dodgers.”

Was he one of those crazy fans hollering at Lasorda from the stands at Candlestick, too?

“Let’s just say I was pretty excited every time they lost,” Faries said, grinning.

The Padres trailed 3-1 entering the seventh, and with the way Belcher was pitching, it appeared to be only a formality that he’d become the first pitcher in the league to win his third game this season.


He toyed with a no-hitter for the first 3 1/3 innings and allowed only one baserunner to reachsecond since the fourth inning. Belcher opened the seventh by retiring Benito Santiago on a line drive to left and Jerald Clark on a fly ball to right.

Garry Templeton then made what appeared to be the third out of the innign when he hit a line drive to Daniels. Daniels put his glove up and fell backward as the ball hit his glove. He lifted his head up in time to watch the ball pop out of his mitt and see Templeton standing on second.

The Dodger defense, the worst in the major leagues, struck again. They have 16 errors that have led to 12 unearned errors.

“Every ball out there is in the lights,” Daniels said. “I went down so it wouldn’t hit me in the face. I stayed with it as long as possible.

“I lost it, it hit my glove, and they gave me an error. Those things happen.”

Belcher, who didn’t look to be in the mood for excuses, looked disgusted, and then became unnerved. Shawn Abner, who struck out and grounded into a double play in his first two at-bats, singled to left, scoring Templeton. Pinch-hitter Mike Aldrete then walked.

That brought up Faries, who not only was making his first start but also had only one plate appearance entering the game. Belcher’s first pitch was a ball. The second pitch was a fastball over the plate, and Faries sent it into the left-center gap and to the fence.


Abner scored. Aldrete scored. The Padres had a 4-3 lead. And Faries stood on third with a triple.

“That’s about as good as I can hit it, I think,” Faries said.

That was all for Belcher, who barely was off the field before left-handed reliever John Candelaria give up a run-scoring single to center by Tony Fernandez, giving the Padres a 5-3 lead.

The rest was left up to Craig Lefferts, who pitched the final two innings for his third save. The only trouble he encountered was in the ninth when pinch-hitter Gary Carter hit a sizzling line drive with one out and Jose Gonzalez on first.

Faries leaped up, snagged the ball and threw to first for the double play.

With the victory that boosted the Padre record to 8-4, almost everyone seemed to be feeling better in the Padre clubhouse.

Padre right fielder Tony Gwynn, whose strained left rib cage muscle left him in so much pain Thursday that he left the game and had X-rays taken, hardly felt the cold ice pack wrapped around his body.

Third baseman Jim Presley, whose stiff right shoulder and .091 batting average has kept him out of the lineup the past two days, pronounced himself fit and will start today.


Joe McIlvaine, Padre general manager, who had surgery to remove cysts on his neck and back and missed Friday’s 4-0 defeat, was even in a joking mood.

“I told (chairman) Tom Werner and (president) Dick Freeman that they would have to be the general managers last night,” McIlvaine said, “and look what happened. I had to get back.”

Although he didn’t want to spoil the celebratory mood of the clubhouse, reliever Larry Andersen, who won his first game since joining the Padres, was even more fearful of his stiff neck. He struck out the side in the seventh inning, but the pain started to surge through his body.

“It scared me a little bit because now it’s down my left arm,” Andersen said. “It’s just aching. I don’t think that’s normal.

“The bottom line is if I take two weeks to a month off, according to doctors, they think that will take care of it.

“I really don’t know what’s going to happen.”