ST. PETERSBURG -- Padres outfielder Kyle Blanks will not get a chance to face Matt Moore this weekend, as Moore -- undefeated at 6-0 with a 2.14 ERA -- will not pitch in the Rays' three-game series against San Diego.
Had the two faced each other, it would have made for an interesting reunion between the two former high school teammates from Moriarty High in New Mexico.
Blanks, 26, was a senior when Moore, 23, was a freshman at Moriarty. In fact, Blanks' best man in his wedding was Moore's older brother, Bobby, who was also a standout athlete.
Moriarty High is not exactly a baseball factory, and the city covers 4.8 square miles with a population of 1,910, according to the latest census.
"He was good," said Blanks when asked about Moore as a freshman. "I saw him pitch as a freshman and then not again until professional baseball. He grew substantially."
Moore was selected in the eighth round of the 2007 Draft and reached the big leagues briefly in 2010. A year ago, he was 11-11 with a 3.81 ERA in 31 starts. This season, he has been dominant, allowing 26 hits in 42 innings.
"I always knew he was a good athlete," Blanks said. "I knew the potential was there. When he signed, he did it every year and was successful."