Thatcher bounces back to record two key whiffs

Thatcher bounces back to record two key whiffs

Thatcher bounces back to record two key whiffs

SAN DIEGO -- It wasn't a good stretch of outings last weekend in Denver for Padres left-handed reliever Joe Thatcher, who allowed a walk-off home run in one game and a game-winning hit in another.

"When you struggle, you go to bed at night not feeling good about yourself," Thatcher said.

Thatcher didn't have to wait long for a shot at redemption, as he struck out Freddie Freeman and Brian McCann for the first two outs of the ninth inning in the Padres' 3-2 victory over the Braves on Tuesday. Luke Gregerson came in to face righty Dan Uggla, striking him out to end the game.

As for Thatcher, who has a 1.96 ERA in 32 appearances, it was all part of the territory that goes with being a left-handed specialist.

"We always say you need to have a short memory as a reliever," Thatcher said. "I made one mistake in Denver, but I just knew the way I've been throwing, good things would happen. I had to forget the last few outings. I want the ball."

On Tuesday, Thatcher got Freeman with a fastball and got McCann with a sweeping slider before being replaced.

"I knew they were going to be aggressive," Thatcher said of the Braves. "That's a good team over there."

How good was Thatcher's stuff?

"The slider to McCann was the best slider he's thrown all year," said catcher Nick Hundley.

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