So we know now that Jonathan Sanchez won’t be an oddsmaker after his mediocre pitching career ends. That weekend sweep the San Francisco Giants pitcher predicted for his team didn’t come close to happening.

We also know the San Diego Padres took a major step toward winning the National League West title by winning two of three games against the Giants – a fact that leaves San Francisco in a Giant predicament.

Falling another game behind the Padres – San Diego leads the West by 3 1/2 games – immediately before a tough nine-game stretch in which you are playing three of the NL’s top teams isn’t the preferred method to winning a division title.

Particularly when San Diego is starting a 10-game sequence against three also-rans – the Chicago Cubs, Milwaukee Brewers and Arizona Diamondbacks.

San Francisco has three games each against the Philadelphia Phillies (.564 winning percentage), St. Louis Cardinals (.560) and Cincinnati Reds (.568) at the time when the Padres should be beating up on three below .500 squads.

By the time the stretch concludes, San Francisco might be five or six games behind the Padres as September approaches. It will be quite an accomplishment if the Giants don’t lose further ground to San Diego, the upstart squad with the NL’s best record.

The Padres annihilated two-time Cy Young Award winner Tim Lincecum in Sunday’s finale, with the 8-2 drubbing serving notice that even the San Francisco ace who has dominated them in the past can’t halt their season-long dominance of the Giants.

That was Lincecum’s first start against the Padres this season and San Diego easily improved to 9-2 against San Francisco.

Of course, the tone for the series was set Friday night when Mr. Big Mouth (that’s Sanchez) didn’t come through in the opening game, won 3-2 by the Padres.

San Diego could have won the Saturday afternoon matinee if its clutch hitting hadn’t been horrid. The Padres lost 3-2 in 11 innings and stranded nine runners over the final four innings. Buster Posey’s base-running hustle in the 11th helped give the Giants the much-deserved 3-2 victory.

Padres manager Bud Black might have given ace Mat Latos too quick a hook on Saturday. Latos tied a career-high with nine strikeouts in six innings but was pulled after allowing Pablo Sandoval’s leadoff homer in the seventh.

You can just imagine the relief the Giants felt to see Latos exit since this was the fourth time this season the 22-year-old dominated San Francisco hitters.

The Padres bounced back well from the defeat with its crushing knockout of Lincecum. San Diego tallied four times in the second with recent acquisition Miguel Tejada driving in two of the runs and the light-hitting duo of Tony Gwynn Jr. and Everth Cabrera driving in the other two.

The two teams still meet seven more times this season and that can’t feel too good for the Giants based on their struggles with the Padres this season.

Perhaps Jonathan Sanchez can fill us in again on the odds of the Giants overtaking San Diego.

On second thought, probably not.


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