In Wednesday's 13-2 victory over the White Sox at Camelback Ranch, the right-hander showed signs of being a No. 1.
The White Sox actually did most of their damage very early, when Brent Lillibridge singled, A.J. Pierzynski tripled and Alex Rios hit a sacrifice fly during a two-run first. Pierzynski's triple to center came just a little less than one week after the White Sox catcher circled the bases with an inside-the-park homer last Friday.
This game was a one-run battle going into the seventh, thanks in part to a solid effort from White Sox right-hander Dylan Axelrod. He yielded three runs on eight hits over 5 2/3 innings, fanning four and walking three, in this split-squad affair for the White Sox, with Gavin Floyd starting in Scottsdale against the Rockies. The Padres took the lead for good in the fifth with two runs scoring on Chase Headley's double.
Terry Doyle, a Rule 5 Draft selection who recently was returned by the Twins to the White Sox, relieved Axelrod in the sixth and recorded the final out. But he was touched up for six runs in the seventh, capped by Jason Bartlett's two-run double and Andy Parrino's two-run homer to left-center.
Yonder Alonso hit his first Spring Training homer in the second off Axelrod, giving the Padres' Opening Day first baseman a team-best 20 hits. Jeremy Hermida, who hit two home runs Wednesday and has been playing with a strained ligament in his left pinky, knocked out two hits in the victory.Daniel Robertson tacked on three more during the Padres' four-run eighth with a bases-loaded triple. Up next for Padres: The Padres return to Peoria on Thursday for a 1:05 p.m. PT game, live on Gameday Audio, against the Cubs. Clayton Richard is scheduled to start and will throw in upwards of six innings. Reliever Brad Brach, who is trying to win a job in the bullpen, is scheduled to throw one inning in relief. Brach had a 1.04 ERA in 10 games. He leads the staff in appearances and has struck out 13 in 7 2/3 innings. Brach has 112 saves over his first four Minor League seasons with the organization.