Guzman's rare feat comes against changeup

Guzman's rare feat comes against changeup

ST. PETERSBURG -- Jesus Guzman had trouble making contact with the changeup when he faced Clayton Richard during the pitcher's simulated game Saturday afternoon.

Guzman had no such trouble when he saw a changeup during the game, as he connected for a seventh-inning grand slam that was the major blow in a five-run inning that gave the Padres a lead in a game they eventually lost, 8-7.

Guzman actually saw plenty of changeups in his pinch-hit at-bat against Rays pitcher Jeremy Hellickson -- six of them, in fact.

"He threw me six of them in a row," Guzman said Sunday. "I've never seen that before."

Guzman laid off a 2-2 changeup down and then took advantage of another changeup that Hellickson got up in the strike zone, sending it over the wall in left field.

"Buddy [manager Bud Black] came up to me during the game and told me that someone was going to hit a changeup hard," Guzman said. "He told me to be ready."

It was the first Padres pinch-hit grand slam since Josh Barfield hit one against the Giants on Aug. 17, 2006, and the first pinch-hit slam on the road since Melvin Nieves did so Aug. 26, 1995, against the Mets.

"I was watching the game all day [from the bench]," Guzman said. "He [Hellickson] believed in that pitch."

Corey Brock is a reporter for Keep track of @FollowThePadres on Twitter. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.