Jeff Suppan says he is concentrating on the now and not caught up in the resurrection of his career.
"He's relishing every moment," Padres manager Bud Black said of Suppan Sunday afternoon after the 37-year-old right-hander suffered the first loss in his impressive comeback.
After three starts with the Padres, Suppan is 2-1 with a 1.69 ERA. He dropped a 3-2 decision to the Phillies Sunday although he allowed only three runs (two earned) on six hits and a walk in six innings.
"Jeff has a great perspective of what it means to be in the big leagues," Black continued. "He's cherishing every day and not taking anything for granted. He loves the game and enjoys being part of a team. He's competitive. He understands where he is in the game.
"Jeff pitched well today. Six solid innings. He did his job."
It just wasn't enough, which is often the case when a Padres starter gives up three or more runs.
Last year at this time -- in fact for the entire 2011 season -- Suppan was pitching for Omaha of the Triple-A Pacific Coast League. Less than a month ago, Suppan was struggling to get outs for the Padres' Tucson entry of the PCL, where his ERA after two abbreviated starts was 12.15.
Suppan says he hasn't given much thought about what it means to him to be back in the major leagues.
"I've always had the same foundation," he said Sunday afternoon. "Change speeds, keep the ball down, avoid damage ... sometimes I've been successful. But I pretty much live in the present, batter to batter, pitch to pitch. I have to think short term. After the season is over, maybe I'll think about all the other stuff."