The National League West-winning Padres -- their second straight title -- reeled off 19 wins in September to finish the regular season with the second-best record in the National League. This marked the third straight winning season for the Padres, the first time in franchise history a team has put together as many consecutive seasons above .500.
Final MLB Standings
Record vs. Cardinals
The Padres played the Cardinals in two series this season, taking two of three in San Diego and two of three in St. Louis. In the series finale at PETCO Park on May 28, a supposed pitchers' duel between Jake Peavy and Cardinals left-hander Mark Mulder ended with 32 hits and six home runs in a 10-8 win for the Friars. San Diego nearly swept the Cardinals in St. Louis from Sept. 25-27, with the Redbirds being saved by a late-inning, three-run homer by Albert Pujols in the series finale.
Record vs. playoff teams
San Diego can boast a 21-13 record against teams headed to the playoffs. It only faced one American League playoff team this season, taking two of three from Oakland in San Diego. The Padres dominated the division-rival Dodgers in 2006, winning 13 of 18, including six straight at one point. The only playoff team the Padres have a losing record against is the Mets, at 2-5.
Record vs. winning teams
Against teams with a winning record this season, the Padres went 30-19.
When playing in pitcher-friendly PETCO Park, going deep is not the preferred run-scoring method of choice. The Padres' offense somehow made less more, finding themselves in the bottom half of the National League in batting average, slugging percentage, on-base percentage, RBIs and home runs.
MLB hitting stats
The offensive numbers aren't gaudy for San Diego, but first baseman Adrian Gonzalez is enjoying the best year of his young career. The 24-year-old had two hitting streaks of 17 games, and also leads the Padres with 24 home runs. Of the everyday position players, Gonzalez also leads the team with a .304 average. Mike Piazza has held his own at catcher this season, hitting 22 homers.
Padres hitting stats
The Padres were the sixth-best fielding team in Major League Baseball. The Friars trailed only the Astros and the Rockies in fielding in the National League.
MLB fielding stats
Utilityman Geoff Blum has made six errors in 49 games at shortstop, and no errors in a combined 36 games while playing first base, second base, third base, or outfield. Left fielder Dave Roberts hasn't made an error in 127 games.
Padres fielding stats
Geoff Blum (2 G, 2 AB, 1 HR)
Mike Piazza (28 G, .255, 4 HR, 6 2B, 8 RBI)
David Wells (10-4, 16 GS, 120.0 IP, 3.15 ERA, 81 K, 25 BB)
Alan Embree (1-0, 21.1 IP, 1.69 ERA, 12 K, 5 BB)
Mark Bellhorn (15 G, 8 RBI, 3 HR, 3 2B, .191)
Todd Walker (12 G, .349, 5 HR, 6 RBI)
Trevor Hoffman (1-2, 11 G, 12 IP, 3.75 ERA, 13 K, 5 BB)
2006 stats vs. St. Louis
San Diego was second only to the Braves in the National League with a .330 average when facing the Cardinals. San Diego's pitching staff allowed the least amount of runs to the Cardinals in the National League at 27, a figure tied by the Mets.
Game 1 starter Jake Peavy won his only start against St. Louis this season, despite allowing six runs in five innings. He was helped by two home runs by Josh Bard, the backup catcher to Piazza. Bard hit .643 (9-for-14) against St. Louis this season with four doubles and six RBIs. Piazza hasn't looked too bad either, hitting .308 (4-for-13) with a home run and three RBIs.
Career vs. Game 1 starter Chris Carpenter
Manny Alexander: 0-for-2
Josh Bard: 3-for-4 (.750), 1 2B, 2 RBI
Josh Barfield: 0-for-3
Mark Bellhorn: 1-for-2 (.500), 1 BB
Geoff Blum: 3-for-10 (.300)
Russell Branyan: 4-for-11 (.364), 1 HR, 1 2B, 2 RBI, 4 BB
Mike Cameron: 6-for-22 (.273), 2 HR, 2 2B, 9 RBI
Brian Giles: 6-for-20 (.300), 4 2B, 6 RBI
Adrian Gonzalez: 1-for-3 (.333)
Khalil Greene: 3-for-9 (.333), 1 2B, 1 RBI
Ryan Klesko: 4-for-15 (.267), 3 RBI
Mike Piazza: 2-for-6 (.333), 1 HR, 5 RBI
Dave Roberts: 2-for-10 (.200), 1 2B
Todd Walker: 2-for-32 (.063), 1 HR, 2 RBI
Amanda Branam is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.Less