Padres infield defense shined on Opening Day despite loss

SAN DIEGO -- Clayton Richard became the first Padres pitcher to complete seven or more innings on Opening Day since Jake Peavy did so in 2009, thanks in large part to a renewed infield that showed just a glimpse of what the defense could be capable of this season.

Four new faces in the Padres infield came to play as their defensive efforts kept Opening Day exciting.

"There were some good defensive plays," said Padres third baseman Chase Headley.  "You know I think we expect to play well defensively and obviously there were some nice plays early on, that was a positive and hopefully we an continue on that trend."

A couple of early double plays from Headley, shortstop Freddy Galvis and second baseman Carlos Asuaje showed promise to earning pitcher Clayton Richard an Opening Day win, but the Padres bats stayed silent, coming up short in the big moments.

"They did everything they could to battle and stay in the game," said Richard. "If it wasn't for their defense, we wouldn't have been in it so it's not like anything was wasted. They played terrifically out in the field, they grinded through at-bats and unfortunately it just didn't turn out our way in the end."

"Asuaje turned two really nice plays, Freddy was great on the left side of the infield, Chase made some nice plays so all you got to do is swing the bats better," said manager Andy Green. "Thats going to come to and I'm not worried about that."

For new outfielder Wil Myers, his defensive performance came with the realization that he still has a few things to learn playing in right field.

"I think the more I continue to work on it and the more I continue to get more comfortable over there, I feel like I'll need to work on it less," said Myers. "I'm more about the skill than really what to do and the more I work, figure out the scouting reports where he can leave me alone out there and I know where to go at all times, I feel like is going to help. Just being out there everyday and going through the hitters and figuring out where to play, I think is obviously going to help and just get readjusted out there."

The Padres lost to the Milwaukee Brewers, 2-1.