Tucson Padres: Fuentes gives Padres a boost on base paths

2013-08-12T00:00:00Z Tucson Padres: Fuentes gives Padres a boost on base pathsZack Rosenblatt Arizona Daily Star Arizona Daily Star
August 12, 2013 12:00 am  • 

Reymond Fuentes is faster than you, and he knows it.

He figured that out way back in middle school, in Puerto Rico.

Fuentes, who was called up to Tucson from Double-A San Antonio on Saturday, used to run the 100-meter dash.

"After one event that I won," he said before the Padres' 7-3 win over the New Orleans Zephyrs at Kino Stadium on Sunday, "they just told me 'you had a lead of like two or three school buses.' I couldn't believe it.

"So, now I take advantage of it every time."

And, he takes advantage of catchers. Because, as he says, they'll "have to get a perfect throw, and me a bad jump."

"There always has to be confidence of your skills and what you're doing," he said. "And I don't think I'm lacking that confidence right now."

It showed in his Triple-A debut Saturday, which came about when outfielder Jaff Decker was promoted to the major-league club.

Padres manager Pat Murphy didn't waste any time, inserting Fuentes into the leadoff spot just hours after he was called up.

After getting walked, Fuentes stole second.

Two innings later, Fuentes reached first on a force out, and stole again.

"First thing they told me when I got here yesterday," Fuentes said, "was that I got the green light to steal."

Murphy was impressed.

"Well, all I know is what I saw last night," Murphy said. "That was the first time I'd seen him play, and if that's an indication of what's to come, he's going to be a good player in these last 25 games."

He's been a good player in Double-A all season - he ranks third in the Texas League with a .316 batting average and his 29 stolen bases are the second most in the league.

On a team that has only two players with more than six steals - Dan Robertson has 20, Jonathan Galvez 18 - Fuentes will be a welcome addition.

In fact, in his five seasons in the minors (including two in the Red Sox organization), Fuentes has averaged 32 stolen bases a season.

"When he gets on base," said pitcher Keyvius Sampson, who spent most of this season with Fuentes in San Antonio, "he makes things happen."

For Murphy, it's another weapon he has at his disposal as the Padres fight for their playoff life.

For the team, the Padres are getting a talented speedster to stabilize the top of the lineup.

And for Fuentes, it's an opportunity for him to prove to the big-league club that he can contribute.

"I'm bringing all my tools and I'm bringing 100 percent every day," Fuentes said. "I don't believe in these 'dog days', I know I'll find the energy to play 100 percent every day and I think that's going to be a huge thing for the Padres to know, that they can't ever doubt my effort level."

¡Tus Padres!

Today

• What: Oklahoma City at Padres

• When: 7:05 p.m.

• Radio: 1290-AM

Tucson 7, New Orleans 3

• Highlight: The Padres burst out of the gates Sunday, scoring five of their seven runs in the first frame. Reymond Fuentes started things off with a leadoff single, Dan Robertson brought him to third on a line drive double to left field, Dean Anna walked to load the bases, and the floodgates opened. New Orleans didn't even record an out until the sixth batter. Mike Wilson, Scott Moore, Eddy Rodriguez and pitcher Anthony Bass all had RBIs in the inning. It was the Padres' third straight win.

• Big number: 2.00. ERA from Bass in his last three starts, including Sunday's scoreless effort over seven innings against the Zephyrs on Sunday. Bass allowed only two hits, with no walks and seven strikeouts. His performance dropped his ERA from 6.67 to 5.97.

• Tonight's starters: RHP Matt Andriese, Tucson (1-5, 4.14 ERA) vs. RHP Paul Clemens, Oklahoma City (2-0, 2.08 ERA)

- Zack Rosenblatt

Copyright 2014 Arizona Daily Star. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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