Padres International Draft vs. Beltway-Bronx Bias

Jay’s wrist broken 6-28-16
Final thoughts on the Federalist’s wrist being broken: Gio Gonzalez is too wild, and a bit of a punk for fielding the ball like it was in play. You could HEAR it. FYI, Dusty Baker approves of this, as it gives his team dominance. Dusty has read some martial art books, you know?  He’s never had a reputation as a good handler of pitchers, so this is what you get.  It basically destroyed a critical piece of (what’s left of) Andy Green’s lineup, and an asset A.J. Preller was getting ready to deal. Padres owe the Gnats one.

Federalist4

Wallace homers; Friedrich struggles in loss to O’s 6-29-16
It’s bad enough that the O’s are simply a lot better, but the Padres got screwed again with the umpires. That’s clearly interference, and the inning should have been over. The Padres keep getting East coast biased, and it really gets old. The point is not whether they would have won or not, it’s about respect, and Andy Green understands that very well. He’s an excellent young manager. Sometimes you have to get tossed for your team. Chris Davis was clearly to the inside of he running box coming to 1st, and interfered with 1B Wil Myers’ ability to catch the good throw from P Christian Friedrich.

1B Chris Davis

A few other finer points of the game: the reason Chris Davis runs (illegally) to the inside of the box is because he’s a bad baserunner, and can’t hit the outside of the bag with his left foot. This is what a baserunner needs to (per the rules) on a chopper up the first baseline. Davis & the O’s were rewarded for poor play. East coast bias, Padres fans say.

Same garbage with BJ Upton getting robbed of a 2-run HR last week in Camden, with its antiquated foul poles causing all kinds of confusion. Replay officiating (in NY) all very convenient to the Orioles. Yes, the Padres stink so most of their fans don’t care too much about the results; it’s the lack of objectivity & respect which is disturbing. Too many East coast fans & media don’t even want to admit what really happened, expect to get all the calls, and then be allowed to control the narrative forever after.  It stinks, much like the bourgeois political economy we all live in.

Cashner likely to return Sunday vs. Yankees 6-29-16
This moves Erik Johnson to the minors or waivers. Thank goodness. Now consider that James Shields has actually been worse for the CWS.  It will be really nice to get Tyson Ross back– around August it sounds. Preller & Green have done all they can, but they’re totally outmatched against the upper AL East.

Skip Schumaker OF

Skip Schumaker joins Padres in front-office role 6-29-16
Everyone said he was a good guy when he was cut by the Padres in Spring Training, especially Cardinals fans. Those who say the Padres should be more like STL, here you go.

Bossman, Jr. robs homer, turns unreal double play 6-29-16

That was the Play-of-the-Year by BJ. There are only maybe 2 or 3 other active players who could even possibly make that double play. [1]

I don’t exaggerate when I say that BJ Upton & Carl Crawford saved the Rays pitching staff at least 1 run/game as compared to the rest of the league. Most of it was BJ. The best players of their ‘dynasty’ were: him, 3B Evan Longoria, 2B Ben Zobrist, RHP James Shields & LHP David Price– managed by Joe Maddon. They were awesome, with a team payroll ~$50-60M under GM Andrew Friedman.

Bossman, Jr2

I’ve been thinking about this play for several days (baseball is like that), and I’ve come to the conclusion that’s the best double play I’ve ever seen. Score it 8-3, with BJ Upton robbing J.J. Hardy of a 2-run HR.  The catch was made left of dead center in Petco, then the perfect throw to 1B Wil Myers.  Hats off, unbelievable!!

Padres acquire Paddack from Marlins for Rodney 6-30-16
Remember that A.J. Preller signed Fernando Rodney at the end of the off-season, meaning anyone could have had him for cheap. No one else wanted him. It was a great scrap heap pick-up & reclamation, as the Padres net a top 20-year old pitching prospect for it.

Adiós… >>>——————————->

RHP Chris Paddack

It’s 9:00 AM EDT [7-1-16], and this story still does not appear on the MLB.com News feed.  Fernando Rodney is an All-Star closer, so this is actual news, but apparently not for some.  FYI: Florida doesn’t always count as East coast. It depends…

Padres giving Maurer ‘first crack’ at closer role 7-1-16
I’m looking forward to the Yankees, who stink. Old, overpaid and poorly assembled. Too many egos with the NYY, make it an impossible situation for GM Brian Cashman. I don’t know how (or why) he’s stayed so long? Right now, LF Brett Gardner & SS Didi Gregorius are their only homegrown talent. Their starting pitching is bad after RHP Masahiro Tanaka. Nice bullpen, but too many extra innings will wear it down. Once again, Mariano Rivera was a unique closer and is irreplaceable. Torre & Girardi could manage games like they were 7 innings, then hand it to the best closer ever. They no longer have that luxury, even with Aroldis Chapman who is the only thing truly feared in their pen. Also note that DH Alex Rodriguez is at the end, and in many ways symbolic of everything wrong with their organization. It’s too bad, because he never needed PEDs. Alex Rodriguez was naturally one of the best shortstops ever. Now he gets an asterisk*

SS Alex Rodriguez

Padres give up 4 runs in the 9th, but Brandon Mauer gets his first save.  Padres win 7-6 over the Yankees. Are we missing Fernando Rodney yet?  Andy Green is going to have to be creative & flexible with this mess in the pen.

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It’s funny to me how the Tim Kurkjian-types are suddenly all excited about Fernando Tatis, Jr.– whom they still know nothing about. Preller knows. They never consider that A.J. Preller might actually know what he’s doing. It’s ESPN, MLB Network & Fangraphs ‘experts’ that are clueless on the Padres. Padres gotta win, THEN Preller is a genius; until then he’s an idiot to most. That’s America.

Fernando Tatis, Jr

But isn’t it the media’s job to see which teams are doing things right (at ALL levels), and predict them as the next up-and-coming organization? 2014: Preller hired, Wil Myers deal. 2015 Rule 5 draft: Luis Perdomo from STL. LHP Drew Pomeranz acquired from the A’s for 1B Yonder Alonso. Top-5 rated Amateur draft in 2016, with nearly everybody signed.  Fans, that’s progress.

Padres land 6 of Top 30 international prospects 7-2-16
This is the plan, and it’s a good one. Now it’s about player development for these kids. and trading the remaining veterans for more prospects.
Note that most infield prospects are SS, because these are the best athletes on young teams. Very few stay at shortstop as they progress through their professional careers, because the position is so demanding at the MLB level. Starting as a 1B, 2B or 3B prospect, upside is generally considered limited– due to lack of athleticism. Same with young center fielders vs. corner outfielders.
What has changed for the Padres today, is they have catapulted into a top-10 farm system, which is nice.  After emptying their last-rated system upon arrival in the fall of 2014, A.J. Preller has accrued tradeable assets, acquired major cornerstones for a winning future (1B Wil Myers and starting pitchers Drew Pomeranz & Luis Perdomo), and simultaneously built one of the best farm systems in the game.  The timely sale of assets such as Craig Kimbrel, James Shields, and most recently Fernando Rodney have all strengthened the organization in their returns.  Padres are now drafting & signing the top talent, in all 3 drafts; instead of being the team that gets ripped-off.  Fans can be confident with a GM like A.J. Preller, that future trades & draft selections (in total) will balance in the Padres favor. Franchises need solid leadership, in order to win, more than ever today. Padres finally have it.

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Padres News & NL Round-up

The Padres have now played every team in the NL, so fans can fairly gauge where they stand.  Padres are last in the NL West, with no hope of competing for the post-season. This was obvious on Opening Day, when they were shut-out 16-0 by the Dodgers, and swept in that Petco series without scoring a run.  Opening Day was the only start the Padres #1 pitcher, Tyson Ross has made in 2016.  Since then, Ross has been dealing with & rehabilitating from a shoulder injury, and is expected back sometime after the All-Star break.

Tyson_Ross

Only ATL & CIN are worse NL teams, and it should be noted that they are qualitatively worse. The Padres can be grouped ahead of them, with MIL & PHI as rebuilding teams. Thankfully, the Padres are much further along in the process with 1B Wil Myers, LHP Drew Pomeranz & RHP Luis Perdomo already in their future mix. Padres also have more in tradeable assets than these other bad teams including: RHP’s Tyson Ross, & Andrew Cashner (when healthy),  RF Matt Kemp, LF BJ Upton, CF Jon Jay 3B Yangervais Solarte, C Derek Norris & closer Fernando Rodney.   Fans can sense that GM A.J Preller is about to make another round of deals.

LHP_Drew Pomeranz
Ahead of the Padres for now are ARZ & COL, two directionless franchises that are caught in no-man’s-land; maxed out on payroll, yet still far short of fielding a truly competitive team.  PIT & MIA are next, with a few intriguing young pieces but lacking other key parts, along with the leadership to put it all together; expect both these teams to sink badly by August/September and into next year.

Jeffrey Loria

The remaining teams are all contenders to some degree, with the SFG & CHC being the class of the NL in 2016. The NYM are decent, but have serious injury issues with their young pitching staff.  WAS and LAD are similar, in that both are high-payroll teams that don’t win in October.  Both also have serious questions concerning their leadership, on-the-field & in the front office.  Always beware of STL, they’re a championship team, waiting in the weeds.

Matt Holliday RF

Pomeranz homers, shuts down Reds in win 6-25-16
If Andrew Cashner is anywhere near healthy by season’s end, he will decline a QO, if he hasn’t been traded.  Cashner is a better pitcher than Ian Kennedy, who received 5/$70M in free agency. A mid-20’s draft pick may be more valuable than any prospect package A.J. Preller is offered.  Obviously, everything depends on Cashner’s health and performance.  In the unlikely event Andrew Cashner accepts the Padres QO, it’s only a one-year deal for ~$16M, which isn’t a disaster contract. The rule in baseball management is: there are no bad one-year deals. That’s not 100% correct, but you get the idea.

Andrew Cashner RHP

Padres score in first 8 frames in win over Reds 6-24-16
Pete Rose has a remarkable lack of respect for today’s players. Example: his interview in the Reds booth during the 1st inning last night, when Wil Myers hits a home run, and Rose exclaims he can’t believe the ball went out– so the balls must be juiced. No credit to Myers for being a great hitter. He’s like that on FOX too, old-school to his grave…

Charlie Hustle

I used to be a Reds fan when I was a kid, but always preferred 2B Joe Morgan as a player & C Johnny Bench. With that said, as selfish as Rose has been, I still hope he gets the MLB HoF. He’s paid his dues, and many players have done much worse.

Walt Jocketty GM

The Reds are by far the worst pitching staff in MLB, and quite possibly the worst team in the NL. What the heck was Bryan Price arguing & getting tossed for? That last pitch before he got ran out was a strike, according to K-Zone. Cincinnati needs a clean sweep from ownership & management on down, otherwise they’ll continue to be NL fodder for a long time.

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Archer

Fernando Rodney has a ton of trade value, as the Padres hold a $2M team option for 2017, and are only paying him $1.6M this season. You need a reliable closer, so Preller can go either way, depending on what’s offered. Look what BOS gave up for Kimbrel.

September call-ups in San Diego will be interesting this season. That will be a nice change for fans. Still, a lot going on off-the-field until then. Nine days until the new International draft period opens, with the Padres all-in on that. Only a few top amateur draft picks left to sign…  Nice Padres rebuild, A.J. Preller.

Upton Jr.’s near-homer changes momentum 6-23-16
BJ & the Padres got robbed of a 2-run HR.  Get some modern MLB foul poles Baltimore! You need them with these stronger players now.
…and to that clueless O’s announcer, asking why BJ & Matt Kemp were circling the bases: it’s because they BOTH knew it was a home run, and wanted to be near the dugout with their teammates when the call was correctly overturned.

Didn’t happen. I wonder if the umpires were ‘protecting their own.’ The 3B umpire on the call initially had a glazed look in his eye– like he knew he blew the call.  BJ didn’t care, and showed him up; and honestly that’s why I’ve always loved him as a player. You get hated on a lot for being that, so respect it.

Rodney just misses out on Padres record
Righty’s streak of consecutive innings without ER snapped, but San Diego could appeal 6-22-16

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Fernando Rodney really should have the record, but that’s baseball, and it has to be scored a hit when the ball bounces off the bag. Notice Wil Myers is an off-the-charts defensive 1B, no errors so far. What a magnificent young player. Wil be Untouchable in future trade talks.

Wil Myers_Rays RF

Padres fans have been debating the Wil Myers deal endlessly.  Looks like: 1) the Padres stole Myers, 2) the Nationals got a good young pitcher and potential 2B/utility guy in Trea Turner from SD, and 3) the Rays got fleeced, receiving a 27-YO RF from the Nationals, who is having a career year hitting .255/.315/.443.  Rays also reaped a few useless minor leaguers from a barren Padres system.  Happened just after Joe Maddon & Andrew Friedman left Tampa.

CWS Statement on James Shields Trade

Want a good laugh Padres fans?  Go into the CWS forum, and read the comments on any James Shields start.

Shields shows improvement in steady start 6-23-16

White Sox fans: I just published a baseball piece on my site and laughingly referenced you at the end. It was intended as a compliment to your wittiness, clarity & direct style. I strongly prefer the NL, and truly appreciate being able to read your thoughts, clearly illustrating the hidden drama that runs this family franchise. It doesn’t take long to catch up, with the brutal honesty on this board. Jerry Reinsdorf ownership is family loyalty to the core, and they allow for too much incompetence & other bad stuff, most noticeably Hawk Harrelson broadcasting television. This nepotism & croynism poisons everything in the organization, leaving fans demoralized, over & over. Lifelong White Sox fans know this all-too-well.

Comiskey

This franchise goes back to Charles Comiskey, one of the most reviled owners of the Jim Crow baseball era. Reinsdorf is the last hardliner, old-school owner of the modern MLB era. He deserves credit for being willing to spend money when he believes his team has a chance, but gets demerits for consistent poor judgment in his selections for front office management & scouting. The CWS 2005 World Series is proof that even a blind squirrel can find an acorn, and flags fly forever, but it looks increasingly unlikely to happen again in Reinsdorf’s lifetime.

Buddy Bell, Rick Hahn & Kenny Williams all need to go at once if the CWS are to move forward. If anyone in that organization had even lurked into the Padres forum, they would have had all the information they needed to determine that James Shields was collapsing, meaning it was public knowledge. The White Sox are behind in every facet of their organization, and anyone brought in will need at least 5 years of serious ownership commitment in scouting, drafting, player development, advanced metrics and injury diagnosis & prevention, etc… just to catch up.

Jerry Reinsdorf

Obviously new management will want a new field manager in the end, but until then, Robin Ventura deserves some consideration & respect for what he’s had to work with. Questionable decisions on his part? Yes. But this entire mess, his fault? Not even close. Always hold ownership & front management accountable first in everything.

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Friar Wired: Around the Horn

Myers named All-Star Week ambassador
First baseman eager to represent Padres, MLB during festivities in San Diego 6-17-16
Fangraphs has a new article titled, “Wil Myers Utilizing All Fields in Return to Prominence.”  Of course they say the Padres should trade him, like everyone else. They’ve been wrong all along, but NOW they know…

Wil Myers 1B

Padres, Edwin Jackson agree to Minor League deal
San Diego seeks depth for depleted pitching staff 6-17-16
“There was a point in mid-March when projections had San Diego’s starting five as: Ross, Shields, Cashner, Erlin & Maurer.” Maurer is in the bullpen, Shields traded, and the rest are DL’d.  Padres are desperate, so this is what a GM does.
No way they trade Wil Myers, he’s their cornerstone.

Jon Jay for Jedd Gyorko (STL) was a great swap for the Padres, even with them eating $7M this year.  I hope the Padres extend him a few years.  Alexei Ramirez was a nice low-cost pick-up, instead of the overpay on Ian Desmond who couldn’t play SS anyways. A.J. Preller also snagged starting pitchers Drew Pomeranz, Luis Perdomo & Christian Friedrich this past off-season, which were all under-the-radar moves that have paid off and show future promise. He also restocked the farm system with the Craig Kimbrel trade, and set the Padres up a nice 2016 amateur draft.  Yes they are in last place this year, but they’re in better position than ARZ & COL for the future.

From the 2014-15 off-season, Wil Myers was a steal. Shields was an overpay, and costing them $20M to go away, but an understandable gamble at the time for rotation stability.  Preller did a great job unloading him before the bottom fell out, and we’ll see about RHP Erik Johnson & prospect Fernando Tatis, Jr.  Matt Kemp was Preller’s worst deal, but it is still better than a lot of other GM’s biggest blunders.  Overall Preller has done a fantastic job rebuilding an organization that was in shambles when he arrived.

Erik Johnson aims to impress in home debut 6-16-16
The Nationals are the last top NL team the Padres have yet to face. It’s another good test for this team, and die-hards hope it doesn’t get ugly. Luckily for the Padres, Stephen Strasburg pitched yesterday. Hopefully fans will get a good look at RHP Joe Ross, to get some measure on the Wil Myers deal. The other piece of that deal from the Padres system was (soon-to-be) age 23 SS Trea Turner, who was up briefly for 3B Ryan Zimmerman on paternity leave, but is now back in AAA Syracuse hitting .293/.357/.439.

Billy Joel at Petco in May 2016

MLB announces All-Star Concert Series lineup 6-16-16
Gwen Stefani, OneRepublic, Tori Kelly headline acts set to perform 6-16-16
Did anyone here see ‘piano man’ Billy Joel @ Petco?   Just wondering since they advertised it all off-season. [1]

Perdomo stays grounded, gets first win as starter 6-16-16
Like AJ Preller said, with Perdomo’s stuff he would be a top 10 draft pick, if that was his availability. Gotta stick with him, too much upside. Snagging Luis Perdomo from STL is hopefully going to make up for trading away Ozzie all those years ago.  That’s been A.J. Preller’s plan since the Rule 5 draft.  Perdomo’s 22, sits at 95-96, and gets to 98 w/ tons of ground balls. Electric stuff here.

Luis Perdomo

Padres best Rule 5 success was surely 2B Bip Roberts taken by the Padres from PIT in the Rule 5 draft in December 1985. At the plate OBP is life and making outs is bad. Bip Roberts (.294/.358/.380) was a super-utility player, and one of the most underrated players in franchise history.

Bip Roberts card

After 1991, GM Joe McIlvaine traded him to the Reds for lefty closer Randy Myers. Note, any deals during this period in Padres history must be understood in the context of Tom Werner ownership, which ran from June 1990 to December 1994. Roberts had injury issues in SD, so of course he tore himself up playing on the notoriously hard turf (and unpadded outfield walls) of Riverfront Stadium. Along with CF Eric Davis, (HoF) SS Barry Larkin, and others, Bip Roberts could never really stay healthy playing for the Reds.

Marge Schott

Marge Schott owned the Cincinnati Reds from her inheritance in 1984 to 1999. Schott was hailed by luminaries such as Oprah Winfrey as a model of ‘feminist success’ after the Reds won the World Series in 1990. She was later suspended by MLB (1996-98) then forced to sell-out, due to her statements in support of Nazi party leader Adolf Hitler.

Padres string together rally to sink Fish in finale 6-15-16

Ichiro

Ichiro is an amazing & unique player. Notice how well he takes care of himself. It makes all the difference.
RHP Luis Perdomo is now 2-2, and hitting .250 (1 for 4). He pinch runs and has a stolen base.  Reminds me a bit of Fletch with the Lakers– he does all the little things they need. I don’t know where the Padres would be without him?  An All-Star in my book, admittedly his current ERA (8.79) is a little high…

Fletch Dreams

Shields, Sox optimistic rough debut just a blip 6-9-16
Padres fan here: for those CWS fans who didn’t know, James Shields is cooked. If Reinsdorf, Hahn or Williams are interested in another bat, Matt Kemp is available– please contact Padres GM A.J. Preller ASAP.

Alexei Ramirez SS

BTW, Padres fans have developed much appreciation for Alexei Ramirez. For a long time, the Padres have been replacement level at SS, and while the Cuban Missile has very little pop in his bat and doesn’t walk much, he hits just enough & is super-slick with a great arm in the field. He’s improved the Padres defense tremendously, and therefore helps their pitching staff. The Padres mostly can’t score runs, and have been shutout 10 times already this season. It was a situation where the CWS wanted to move in a different direction at that position, and it worked out for another team. Wondering what White Sox fans think of Tyler Saladino & SS prospect Tim Anderson?  Best of luck with Jimmy Rollins!!

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Green: Padres deserving of ASG consideration 6-8-16
I don’t believe rookies should ever be All-Stars, as anyone can get hot for a few months & fool people. I think LHP Drew Pomeranz is for real, but this excludes him from consideration by my criteria.  Closer Fernando Rodney may be the only Padres 2016 All-Star. CF Jon Jay is very underrated. 1B Wil Myers may be their franchise guy, but it’s a deep position.  When 3B Yangervais Solarte stays healthy, he’s All-Star level.  A few pieces are there, but many are still missing for the Padres.

Amateur draft begins tomorrow night, so keep these thoughts in mind. There are only 30 or so MLB players in every amateur draft, so if a team get one player that’s average. If they get two, that’s spectacular. Three or more in one draft is extraordinary. There are one or two HoFer’s per draft, and obviously those are the picks to make. They aren’t always 1st round either, as Albert Pujols & Mike Piazza prove. It’s about scouting and the ‘eye for talent.’ This draft is considered ‘college light & high-school heavy,’ so expect many HS picks. People who have no clue will yell & scream no matter what GM A.J. Preller does, but the truth is no one will know how anyone did for at least 3-4 years.

Terry Collins

The All-Star manager (Terry Collins- Mets) gets to pick his staff, and obviously he takes his own guys. It would be really cool if he also selected Padres pitching coach Darren Balsley. I witnessed Jim Hickey in TB for many years and he deserves all his accolades, but for my money Balsley is the best pitching coach in baseball today. Without him, Drew Pomeranz isn’t a phenom.  [Andy Green was later invited by Collins. Cool]

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Rime of the Seattle Mariners & Padres Ownership

Posted @ Padres.com

Ron Fowler

Padres chairman Fowler expects better from team   6-1-16
Ownership 101: be quiet and speak with your checkbook.  If there’s a problem with the front office or GM, then deal with it directly & decisively.  Don’t vent through the media. Building a winning organization takes time, hard work, money & luck.  Most owners are overgrown babies who are used to getting everything they want immediately.
The biggest historical detriment to the Padres winning, has been their ownership.  Ron Fowler’s weakness seems to be his impatience & meddling.  When an owner hires a new GM to a 5-year contract, that’s his guy.  That means the owner must refrain from bitching and throwing regime personnel under the bus, just because he can’t stand losing.  Since baseball is about losing, perhaps Ron Fowler is in the wrong business?  It’s going to take a leader with vision (along with a generous & meddle-free owner) to ever get it done for the Padres and their fans.
James Shields’ ERA went from 3.06 to 4.28. One blow-up start can do that early.  He’s been pretty solid mostly, but poorly supported.  He’s a professional, and owned that he stunk the other day.  Padres need OBP & SLG.

Padres homer four times to rout Mariners
Cano’s 16th homer isn’t enough in San Diego 6-1-16
Padres really caught a break with RHP Felix Hernandez going on the DL, as I was expecting to wake up to another Padres shutout loss.  Right calf strain for King Felix, and fans hope he gets better soon.  One of the best of this era– HOF no question.

Padres need support at the All-Star ballot box 6-1-16
Closer Fernando Rodney will be the Padres lone All-Star representative.  I hope he closes out a win, getting the NL home-field advantage in the WS. Except for 2010-12 (and a tie in 2002), it’s been all AL in the mid-summer classic since 1997.

Fernando Rodney

Padres watch 10-run lead disappear vs. M’s 6-2-16
When the Padres are bad, they’re really bad, as they keep finding unbelievable new ways to lose games. Frustrating & fascinating, all at the same time.  Give the Mariners credit for not giving up.  The best recent news for the Padres is that RHP Cesar Vargas won’t need Tommy John surgery.  Press on, Padres!!

Cesar Vargas

As a Padres fan, it hurts to come up short (yet) again, but what a run & great season guys. Amateur draft next week, Padres have 6 picks in the top 85.  International draft begins July 2.  That’s the organizational focus right now, and real Padres fans know it.  Again, hats off to the Seattle Mariners on that comeback, but Padres fans have seen it before.

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Padres, Snakes & Trade Rumors

Posted @ MLB Padres.com

Padres tap into Solarte power behind Friedrich 5-27-16
Andy Green finally got that 9-0 game where he could use Luis Perdomo like he wants to. Perdomo’s ERA remains under 10.00, so it’s good. It’s really nice for the Padres to have 3B Yangervais Solarte back, as they need his bat & glove.

Yangervis_Solarte_3B

If ARZ’s annual payroll is capped at $100M, then they had no business signing Zack Greinke to that deal. That falls on the GM and upper management. Those who say the Diamondbacks need to clean house are likely correct.

The Federalist

BJ Upton still rocks, a true team player for moving to LF for CF Jon Jay. One of my favorite new nicknames is the ‘Federalist,’ every time Jay does something good I’m looking up our founding fathers & constitutional history!

John Jay

Friedrich making case to stick with Padres
Lefty cruises over 7 innings as offense thumps D-backs  5-27-16
Christian Friedrich has good stuff, and he’s left-handed so he stays in the rotation. Lots of swings & misses, check swings, etc…thank you, COL. The Rockies also gave up on LHP Drew Pomeranz & just gave away Rule 5 pick RHP Luis Perdomo (Cardinals). Evidentially there’s no concern for developing any kind of starting pitching in Denver.

James Loney

Mets acquire Loney from Padres 
Veteran figures to be primary option at first until Duda returns  5-28-16
Padres GM AJ Preller acquired & stashed guys like 1B James Loney all off-season. Loney has hit at AAA El Paso and has an opt-out, so good luck except against the Padres. No real power here. How much is “cash considerations?”

Padres’ ninth-inning rally falls short vs. D-backs 5-28-16
GM AJ Preller needs a nice haul for James Shields, as reliable 200+ IP starters don’t grow on trees. Shields is proven AL-tough and his contract is fair, especially in light of what was handed out this past off-season (Ian Kennedy, Zack Greinke, etc…). Padres might eat a little salary, but not much as it’s mostly about what they get in return. Matt Kemp is another story. CWS are an interesting organization, owned by Jerry Reinsdorf who normally is cheap, but every once in awhile does something crazy. The White Sox are currently 1.5 GB in a wide-open AL Central, so we’ll see if anything comes of this.

IMO, GM Preller should hang onto RHP James Shields for now, as shortstop prospect Tim Anderson in exchange isn’t enough and the CWS have a notoriously thin farm system. They always have, it seems.  Anderson was the 17th overall pick in the 2013 draft, he’s batting .314/.342/.408 in Triple-A Charlotte, which convinces no one he’s MLB-ready or has much of a ceiling. Preller got way better in the Craig Kimbrel deal, and Shields is more valuable. In SD he helps anchor a young & developing starting rotation, that needs an innings horse. He’s pitched really well and that’s worth a lot, even to a last place team such as this. It keeps the younger starters from being overstretched, and then injured. It also makes them nearly respectable, which is better than being a laughingstock. He’s a team leader whom everyone respects, so if he’s dealt it must be for a good haul.

Matt Kemp RF-DH

From the Padres perspective, it’s Matt Kemp whom Preller is really trying to trade. Christian Bethancourt, Travis Jankowski, and a host of AAA-prospects are waiting for their shot at RF, and it won’t happen until Kemp is dealt to the AL where he can DH regularly. It’s in the Padres best interest not deal Shields (or any other major contract) until Matt Kemp is traded. For full effect, dominoes need to fall in their proper order and right now the Padres bottleneck is in RF.

Padres place Vargas on 15-day disabled list  5-29-16
Just another reason not to trade James Shields. Get a MRI.

elbow-joint-arthrography

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San Diego Padres: Gay Pride Night, Smokeless Tobacco & Losing

Padres apologize following Pride Night mix-up 5-23-16
Great back & forth discussion!!

MLB satisfied with Padres’ response to chorus mix-up   5-26-16
Unfortunate, but well-handled, Padres.  Bring the San Diego Gay Men’s Chorus back to sing the national anthem on a military Sunday.   Now that would be interesting!   ‘COMMENT PENDING’

San Diego Gay Men's Chorus

Pomeranz’s gem wasted as Giants walk off 5-23-16
That’s about as tough a loss as it gets for the Padres; two bloops beat them, and the final one should have been caught by RF Matt Kemp. Only two hits and no walks (again) from the SD lineup. Very little Andy Green can do about it, which is what makes all it so frustrating to fans.

Green says Padres need to ‘raise the bar’
A closed-door meeting was a good call by manager Andy Green. It proves he knows when to act, and it holds the players accountable– they’re the ones not getting on base or scoring any runs.

Gwynn family addresses media following suit
Wife, children allege that tobacco company contributed to Padres Hall of Famer’s death 5-24-16
I have mixed feelings on this. I’m a dentist by profession, and always counsel patients to quit, but most are too addicted to stop. Tony Gywnn started in 1977, when smokeless tobacco was still advertised on television. Jocks like Carlton Fisk & Earl Campbell did commercials for it. Big tobacco definitely lied about its health effects and deserve to be held accountable, but at some point people have to take responsibility for their actions. Everybody knows dipping is bad for you. Most lawsuits are about $$. RIP #19

Smokeless Tobacco Results

Padres can’t hold off Giants’ rally, drop series 5-24-16
A win for the Padres today would be a pleasant surprise for their fans.

Padres lose 4-3 in 10 innings, Giants sweep series 5-25-16
The Padres are showing their fanbase every way a team can lose a game this season, getting swept by the Giants who are now 9-0 against the Padres this year. Much of the losing in this series falls on the shoulders of RF Matt Kemp. In the opening game of this set with the Giants, Kemp’s lack of range cost the Padres a 1-0 loss on a routine pop-up that should have sent the game into extra innings. In game two, Kemp was 2-4, getting thrown out trying to stretch both hits an extra base, a case of him trying to do too much, but still making outs which are bad. Game three just ended with a 4-3 loss in 10 innings, where he went 0-5. He batted third and therefore was given multiple opportunities to deliver a win, and again he didn’t. In 2016, Kemp has 197 PA’s, with 4 walks. Matt Kemp (.228/.240/.446) needs to be moved down in the lineup, or sat down on the bench. Or better yet, moved on to the AL. This is easily GM A.J. Preller’s biggest mistake, and he needs to eat whatever it takes to get this done. This situation is hurting player development, and disheartening fans who’ve seen losing all-too-often in San Diego. This is also where Padres owner Ron Fowler becomes accountable, as this can’t affect the Padres ability to spend money in the upcoming amateur & international drafts, or negate any future helpful free-agent acquisitions. That’s the price an owner must pay to own a winning team.

Jake Peavy

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Hector Sanchez greeted warmly by Giants fans
Padres catcher plays at AT&T Park for first time as a visitor 5-25-16
I like the way Giants fans appreciate former role players who helped them win, as it’s not all about the stars.
AJ Preller decided to add some depth to the Padres catching mix, as top prospect Austin Hedges went down with a fractured hamate bone. Derek Norris has hit poorly, and waiver pick-up Christian Bethancourt is raw. Padres stink, so why not?

Padres y Gigantes

Previously posted @ MLB.com

Morrow, Spangenberg suffer setbacks 5-17-16
“I don’t want to say he pulled it again, but it just didn’t feel good,”  [Padres manager Andy] Green said. “Something happened where they had to pull him back. There’s kind of swelling in there.”
That means 2B prospect Cory Spangenberg pulled it again.

Kemp’s homer lone damage vs. MadBum 6-18-16
Of course Madison Bumgarner is a great pitcher, and 29 other teams would love to have him. He just needs to control himself better. He doesn’t need that horsebleep [staring down Wil Myers after striking him out], just head back to the dugout like a professional.
What the Padres really need is some OBP in their lineup– zero walks again last night.
Padres have played the Mets, Cubs & Giants, and SF is the best team in the NL to this fan.

Giants fans: Padres are rebuilding under a smart new GM, and will be very competitive in a few years. If you’re too apathetic or belligerent to see that, then save the insults as you’re just embarrassing yourself. In the meantime, Padres fans need to deal with losing like real men & women. Baseball (like life) is about dealing with losing, and it’s how you respond that really counts.

Madison Bumgarner

Benches empty after MadBum fans Myers 5-18-16
Padres don’t need to throw at anybody, they just need to play better and score more runs.

Padres send Blash to Minors after deal with Mariners 5-18-16
James Loney has an opt-out, not sure if it’s June 1. Padres have the right of first refusal.
I’m glad to see the news about Jabari Blash. Padres are the only organization that’s giving him a shot, and he needs to play everyday– in the minors.

Pence, Cueto push Giants to 7th straight win 5-19-16
RHP Johnny Cueto was the best primetime free-agent starting pitcher signing of the past off-season, in terms of value & contract length. As long as he stays healthy, he’s a second true ace for the Giants. David Price & Zack Grienke are fantastic too, but cost more, for longer. Note: Cueto has an opt-out after 2017, and SF holds a $5M buyout for 2022 if he stays. To me, this was the move that put them over the top in the NL.

Johnny Cueto RHP

Shields outdueled as Friars fall to Giants 5-20-16
At this point, the Padres are no match for the Giants, who are a championship-calibre team. Padres got swept: losing 5-1, 2-1, 3-1; with no walks again in the finale. It’s time for GM A.J. Preller to deal his remaining tradable assets– starting with RF/DH Matt Kemp.  As predicable as this scenario was, it’s still tough for Friar fans to follow, but it’s the reality this organization must face.

Dodger fans: Padres play LA next and few of you lurk in here, so I’ll speak now because it is difficult for Pads fans to correspond with you– due to the sheer numbers in your forum. Padres have 20-30 regular fans, who often listen and sometimes thoughtfully add to a discussion when compelled. Their average post total reaches 30-50 on a decent thread. For the Dodgers it is hundreds, sometimes thousands after a big game; and honestly most of it is noise.

LA Dodgers & the Time Warner Cable Deal

This can be partially explained by the fact that Time Warner Cable owns the rights to the Dodgers’ games on SportsNet LA for $8.35 billion over 25 years. Over 70% of the LA cable/satellite TV market can’t watch a Dodger game on television, so it’s 1) Vin Scully [last time around] on the radio; 2) MLB Gameday; and 3) online posting in team forums during the game. This is pushed to the extreme for the Dodgers, as most of their fans can’t see them play, save going to Chavez Ravine. The LAD lead the world in baseball attendance every year, so there is no reason for them not to be on television. MLB blackout restrictions further add to a fan’s frustration. Theirs the most ridiculous situation in MLB, and deserves to be seriously addressed from a fan (public) interest perspective.

Rougned Odor 2B

Last thoughts on fighting in MLB: the other day TEX 2B Rougned Odor (age 22 career .263/.306/.442) nailed TOR RF Jose Bautista with a solid overhand right to his maxilla, after a hard slide into second base. Bautista slid well past the bag, so it had to be considered a bit dirty. When Joey Bats got up to protest indignation he got nailed by Odor because he wasn’t ready to fight, going in with his hands down & leading with his head.  Rangers ended up winning the game, and both sides have now gotten in their shots, so it’s over– pretty much.  When the dust settles, it’s about wins & losses as well as dignity; so players should cut out the horsebleep (as most of them don’t know how to fight anyways) and just play ball.

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Friars & Brewers

Posted @ MLB.com

Perdomo makes first start, kicking off bullpen game 5-14-16

Luis Perdomo has worked hard to get his ERA below 10.00, so he gets a chance to start. Besides, who else do the Padres have at this point? Carlos Villanueva, Brad Hand & Brandon Mauer are all relievers. The Brewers aren’t a great team, so it’s a decent opportunity for the kid. I have no problem with this move, but I’ll admit I’m more intrepid than most. It will be interesting, for sure.

Luis Perdomo RHP

A quick review of the overall numbers that matter: in Defensive Efficiency Rating (converting balls-in-play into outs) Padres are 19th, with much of that due to injuries– having to play poor defenders such as Brett Wallace, Adam Rosales, etc… Padres fans seem to agree they are better defensively. In composite ERA they are currently 13th, a major improvement over last season. In AVG/OBP/SLG the Padres rank 27th/28th/29th, which is the real problem.

Friars fortify ‘pen with Campos, option Dickerson 5-14-16

1B Wil Myers, RF Matt Kemp, LF B.J. Upton, SS Alexei Ramirez (and the rest AAA players) started for the Padres tonight. Rule 5 pick (from STL) RHP Luis Perdomo made his first MLB start. Before this season, he’d never pitched above A-ball. Perdomo went 2+ innings: giving up 2 runs on 4 hits and 2 walks, while striking out 4. He threw 60 pitches, only 31 for strikes. This kid has stuff– he just needs to learn control, command & economy. Sounds simple, but it’s not.

Lefty reliever Brad Hand entered in the 3rd to clean up Perdomo’s mess– keeping the youngster’s ERA under 10.00. The Padres have had a rash of injuries so far, so the only remaining Padres 2015 Rule 5 pick may be starting again sometime soon. This form of ‘stacking’ guys who really aren’t legitimate starters, is innovative. It lets GM A.J. Preller rotate pitchers (with players who have remaining options to the minors), getting them MLB experience without over-stretching their arms or abilities. Perdomo can’t be optioned (because he’s Rule 5), so if 2 innings are all he can give the Padres then this becomes Andy Green’s bullpen game-plan. RHP’s Tyson Ross & Andrew Cashner are out, so Green & Preller have to get creative. It’s forward & bold, so I like it.

Brad Hand went 4 shutout innings, ending the 6th by coaxing a come-backer from 2B Scooter Gennett, to leave the bases loaded preserving a 6-2 lead. Myers & Kemp provided, and others contributed, if not with a hit– then a walk or nice defensive play.

That got Andy Green to the 7th, where he managed his thin bench and shaky bullpen well enough. It was Kevin Quackenbush, then Ryan Buchter who blew it, with help from the second CI of the night from newly-acquired Hector Sanchez (with 2 out, on a 1-2 pitch in the 8th), giving the Brewers what they needed to tie it at 6-6. Low-cost bullpen has its downside, but the money saved will buy the bats needed to win. Reliever options are better if not perfect for the new Padres skipper, as he has lefties and decent righties to closer Fernando Rodney–> but they need to throw strikes. To be fair, it looked like they were all getting squeezed by HP umpire Manny Gonzalez on Gameday. BTW: Fernando Rodney in the 9th, a walk and throwing error (on a pickoff attempt), ends with a strikeout-throwout double play– Sanchez to 3B Adam Rosales. Vintage Rodney 😉

By the bottom of the 10th, Green is out of bench players, with plenty of bullpen arms available. Green chooses righty Leonel Campos who delivers 2 shutout innings.
Derek Norris (who replaced injured Wil Myers at 1B) & Bossman Jr. hit 2-out solo homers in the 12th. RHP Carlos Villaneuva gives one up to Lucroy, but closes it out for the save. It’s a big win for the Padres, a team trying to find the right track. There’s still a lot of work to be done, but this shows good reason for optimism.

>>>>>>>————————>

This series in Milwaukee brings back memories. I grew a Reds fan in Wisconsin, before interleague play; Brewers were AL back then, so it was acceptable to also root for the Brewers– since they never played each other. #4 3B/DH Paul Molitor was my favorite. I’ve always thought Phil Garner was their best manager– he had very little with which to work, but he maximized what he had. Not his fault they stunk. I remember Rory Markas & Del Crandall as my favorite television broadcast team. Of course, I listened to Bob Uecker on the radio many times.

Harry Doyle

The Stadium bus to the ballpark & back was always affordable & convenient, as were ‘general admission’ (good) seats. Mostly we tailgated with beer & brats hours before the game, like most Brew crew fans. Outsiders need to realize that Wisconsin’s loyalty is primarily to the Green Bay Packers. The Milwaukee Brewers are proudly supported, but not loved like the Packers. Winning & tradition have a lot to do with this. The Brewers have never won the World Series, coming into MLB the same year as the San Diego Padres– 1969. Brewers heartbreak year was 1982, when they were the best team in baseball, until injuries (Rollie Fingers & Pete Vuckovich) and STL rookie CF Willie ‘bleeping’ McGee beat them in 7 games. Brewers have never been anywhere close since.

Willie McGee-CF

I went to many games at County Stadium when I was in college, and it was always a blast. Miller Park is convenient in that it has a retractable roof, as the weather can get nasty in Milwaukee. Miller Park was (and still is) reviled by many. Three construction workers were killed on July 14, 1999 when a 567-foot crane lifting a 400-ton section of retractable roof, bent in half and collapsed. Brewers owner Bud Selig had been pushing to get Miller Park opened on time, and this ‘rush to complete’ was cited as a primary cause of the accident. The dead were Jerome Starr, 52, Jeff Wischer, 40, and William DeGrave, 39, who were in a cage that was being hoisted by another crane when the disaster occurred.

If anyone wants to see how beautiful County Stadium was, Major League (1989) filmed its regular season game scenes there, as Municipal Stadium in Cleveland was considered a dump.  County Stadium was a great ballpark which first brought the Braves (Boston), then the Pilots from Seattle.  New stadiums are mostly about ownership greed, and Miller Park is no exception.

Pete Vuckovich-Clu Haywood

The Brewers franchise was ruined by decades of Bud Selig ownership, in so many ways it still taints the organization. Paul Molitor managing the Minnesota Twins is one example. Brewers GM David Stearns primary task is to build a program that develops quality & reliable starting pitching, which this organizational has always lacked. MIL just wasted an offensive peak (created by superior scouting & player development) consisting of 1B Prince Fielder, RF Ryan Braun, LF Corey Hart, SS J.J. Hardy, 2B Rickie Weeks, C Jonathan Lucroy… because too many starters had ERAs north of 5.00, with no ace. RHP’s Ben Sheets & Yovani Gallardo, championship #2 starters at their best, were it; and that’s not nearly enough.

Yovani Gallardo

Until next time, hey dere Brewers fans!!  Over & out

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How to Win Friends & Influence Online

Content gathered & edited from the MLB.com forums, primarily SD Padres

Shields tallies 9 K’s as Padres blank Brewers 5-13-16
Let’s be clear on what James Shields is: 2-5, 3.12 ERA in 52 IP– in less than a quarter of a season, on track for another 200+ IP with an excellent ERA. He has been poorly supported in most of his outings, hence the losing record. All the other young pitchers (Colin Rea, Drew Pomeranz, Cesar Vargas, etc…) will likely be restricted to 120-150 (max) IP-limit, for their own protection. Padres can no longer count on Tyson Ross and possibly Andrew Cashner for awhile. $21M/year is what quality reliable starting pitching costs, and actually Shields’ contract is fair in open-market (capitalist) terms. If he doesn’t opt-out after this season he has $21M, $21M & $16M (team option- $2M buyout) remaining through 2019, his age 37 season. No one expects much after that, so it’s a good contract and I hope Shields stays– if the Padres can be competitive.

Note: James Shields was my favorite player in Tampa, until he was traded in December 2012 for Wil Myers. I understood why the Rays did it at the time, but it still hurt as a fan. The results of this deal illustrate how much a GM means to an organization, as soon as TBR GM Andrew Friedman left for LAD, new Padres GM AJ Preller was able to swindle Myers from their new Rays GM Matt Silverman. It cost the Padres a nice pitching prospect in Joe Ross to WAS (let’s see if he stays healthy under Dusty Baker?), and SS prospect Trea Turner who’s hitting .310/.377/.442– in AAA Syracuse. It’s the Rays who really got nothing out of the deal, and lost their franchise hitter to boot. Padres fans are grateful  🙂

James Shields

Friedrich slated for Padres debut in series rematch 5-13-16
I don’t see the Padres 23-inning scoreless pitching streak lasting much longer in today’s game, as LHP Christian Friedrich is an emergency call-up with all their injuries (Tyson Ross, Robbie Erlin, Andrew Cashner?). Hopefully they can get 5+ innings out of him (with run support) and a good extended-relief stint from someone like Luis Perdomo. Another good challenge from Andy Green last night earned Alexei Ramirez a hit.  Padres are threatening to climb out of last place, starting to come together, etc…

Tim-LIncecum

Suitors for Lincecum reportedly whittled to three 5-12-16
Padres fan here: I don’t see Tim Lincecum as a starting pitcher in the AL. His fastball velocity isn’t what it was, and it’s not enough to consistently get through stacked AL line-ups with DH’s. He belongs with the Giants, but needs to at least be in the NL. My $.02

Any organization has to insist on a reasonable base salary ($4-6M?) with performance incentives for Tim Lincecum.  He’s got reward potential, but obviously is a huge injury risk– and clubs need to protect themselves. That’s surely what’s being negotiated now.

Pomeranz leads Padres to DH sweep of Cubs 5-12-16
“I got a long memory… He’ll learn.” — John Lackey on how Christian Bethancourt — whom the veteran hurler had never faced — watched his home run.

That just sounds like an excuse to throw at Bethancourt the next time they meet. Padres (and their fans) have long memories too.
For perspective, Christian Bethancourt is a 24-YO kid from Panama, trying to establish himself as a major-leaguer. He was obviously excited in the moment, but there was no intent to show up John Lackey, who is a quality veteran pitcher. Bethancourt will ‘learn’ from Padres manager Andy Green, hitting coach Alan Zinter, and bench coach Mark McGwire– who knows all about HR etiquette.

Fernando Rodney RHP

>>———–>
Padres closer Fernando Rodney shoots 2 arrows at Wrigley, in one day!!
>>———–>
To Cubs fans– your team’s winning percentage is no longer double that of the Padres. Wrigley Field is the most beautiful ballpark ever. Great series, tight games–good luck until Petco! Over & out

Padres claim catcher Sanchez from White Sox 5-11-16
AJ Preller trying to add some catching depth, which you can never have too much of. Example– top prospect C Austin Hedges (was raking in AAA) is now out with a hamate fracture. We’ll see if Hector Sanchez, the switch-hitting witch sticks. I just wanted to say that 😉

Wallace ends up-and-down day with a blast 5-11-16 Beats Cubs 7-4 @ Wrigley
Padres need Brett Wallace to stick at 3B. Both his errors earlier today were throwing, which is easier to fix than a bad glove. He showed a decent glove with a nice pick to snuff a Cubs rally later, so there are signs of improvement. This lets GM A.J. Preller wait for Yangervais Solarte get 100% healthy, while getting a good look at Wallace who walks a TON and has a stick. A bunch of organizations have tried this guy and given up on him. He just needs some coaching, and a chance to play. Preller cleaned house (mostly), and kept what was essential (Balsley) this off-season, so their dugout staff is much stronger. Brett Wallace is another Preller lottery ticket, and it’s great that fans have bought into his plan of trying these guys out, with less regard for winning.

Andy Green ejected

It’s Andy Green’s job to put the expectation of winning on the players, so they don’t embarrass the organization and their fans, Green has done this well so far and Padres fans have (mostly) noticed & appreciate it. Padres now have much more upside, with young players like Wallace, Colin Rea, Drew Pomeranz, Cesar Vargas, Luis Perdomo, Jabari Blash, & others. An organization with brains that isn’t afraid to lose games, can quickly spot & develop its talent.

Brett Wallace 3B

Weeks strains hamstring, likely headed to DL 5-8-16
How many groin/hamstring/quad injuries for the Padres so far?  Looks like Adam Rosales at 2B with Brett Wallace at 3B for awhile. Infield depth is now stretched to its limit, any more injuries at those positions and the Padres are well below replacement level. Who gets the call up?
@Alvin77 & Rolfes: I’d forgotten about 2B Jose Pirela. AJ Preller got him from the NYY for 21-YO RHP Ronald Herrera, who’s in AAA (Scranton). That indicates depth, which is something this organization has lacked in the past. GM did his job (extremely) well this off-season, and this is where it shows up. Manager Andy Green still has usable options, which is nice 🙂

Sabathia says injured groin improving daily 5-7-16
I know it was a great start for him, to get a win the Yankees needed– but it wasn’t worth it to land on the DL. A player has to be honest with himself & his team in that situation. CC Sabathia’s quotes indicate he’s still in denial about his injury. Sad & scary; hope he figures it out.

CC Sabathia

Ross progressing, but not ready to throw 5-4-16
Thanks for this injury report, AJ Cassavell.
The Padres approach with RHP Tyson Ross is correct– let the labrum tear heal, while building protective muscle in the shoulder. You can’t rush tears of ligaments, cartilage and tendons; if you try, you just risk setbacks with no real improvement. The labrum is a piece of fibrocartilage, therefore no throwing yet for Ross. He’s probably at least 4-6 weeks away from throwing, if things go well in his rehabilitation. If things aren’t going well, then much longer.
Also, it sounds like LOOGY Matt Thornton will likely be awhile w/ his Achilles tendonitis.

Padres-Tyson-Ross

Kemp & Myers work well together 5-3-16
Appreciate Matt Kemp (career .289/.344/.491) is the point. He may soon be a luxury the Padres can no longer afford.  Meanwhile, appreciate him.
For the record, it’s at least a push for the best player Wil Myers has ever played with. Evan Longoria 3B (gold glove) career .270/.346/.485.

001H0783

Vargas cements spot in Padres’ rotation 5-4-16
Can the Padres keep him healthy, or will he flameout?  That is always the question with promising young pitchers.

Vargas turns in solid outing, but Padres fall short
PadsFans: 8 shutouts in out first 28 games. I really don’t know any other way to describe it except pathetic.
RicSize: Don’t be sad, two out of three ain’t bad

Ceasr Vargas

Upton, Rea lead way in game-changing 5th inning 5-1-16
Luckily there’s some depth a C, so the chances of that turning around for the Padres are decent. ATL is the worst team in the NL (by far), precisely because they do stupid stuff like giving up on C Christian Bethancourt, who at least has upside. Instead ATL went with veteran CWS-rejects– Tyler Flowers & AJ Pierzynski.

Matt Kemp is better defensively in RF, partly because BJ Upton covers so much room in LF, so CF Jon Jay can shade more to right field. Thus Kemp’s lack of range becomes less of a liability. Still not great, but at least passable in RF at present. BTW– if Jay (presently .271/.333/.323) can move his walk rate up a tick, he becomes a very valuable player.

Kemp’s homer snaps Padres’ skid in LA 4-30-16
Matt Kemp increases his potential trade value, while beating the Dodgers– Padres fans approve!

Matt Kemp 2015

Wallace is becoming an elite pinch-hitter 4-30-16
What the Padres like about Brett Wallace is that he walks. In 31 PAs so far in 2016 his line is .174/.387/.217. He’s walked 6 times, and been HBP twice. For comparison Matt Kemp has walked only twice (!) in 91 PAs for a .284/.297/.591 line. It’s the low OBP (lack of walks) that hurts Kemp’s value at the plate. Wallace is brutal defensively at 3B, and not much better at 1B, so his value is primarily depth off the bench– until an opportunity presents itself. His career .399 SLG is pedestrian, and needs to improve.

>>>>>>>>————————————————–>

Posted @  wsws.org

Support White and Niemuth in 2016!

Niles Niemuth & Jerry White

Socialist Equality Party announces presidential campaign    22 April 2016
SEP has tried ballot access in the past and has always been blocked & cheated (every step of the way) by Democratic Party machinery, proving it’s mostly pointless to pour resources into reformist measures.

Obama in Flint: Let them drink lead     6 May 2016
Barack Obama drinking Flint water is reminiscent of gubernatorial candidate Montgomery Burns eating 3-eyed fish on The Simpsons.

Look at today’s filmmaking … then look at the world      11 May 2016
There are important parallels between David Walsh’s discussion of ‘feminist filmmaking’ and current ‘feminist’ politics, personified in Hillary Clinton.

Obama and the bombing of Hiroshima     13 May 2016 
“The Decision to Use the Atomic Bomb” by Gar Alperovitz is the scholarly work on the subject, and was referenced in an older WSWS article. Also read the “Hiroshima Diary: The Journal of a Japanese Physician, August 6th – September 30, 1945” by Michihiko Hachiya for details of its horrible aftermath. The Hiroshima & Nagasaki atomic bombings were imperialist war crimes of the highest magnitude.

Scarred Survivor

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Friar Musings

San Diego Padres are 7-15, last in the NL West as of this publication.  Everything below was originally posted here, content has been edited slightly.

Padres shut-out by Dodgers in 3-game series 4-6-16
You gotta admit: 1) this is now must-see inept baseball, & 2) A.J. Preller really keeps it interesting. It’s helps to have a sense of humor. Life (like baseball) is mostly about dealing with losing.

Tyson Ross

Tyson Ross lands on DL with shoulder inflammation 4-9-16
Good to be cautious, as he’s too valuable to risk damaging. Get a diagnosis ASAP. Shoulders are the most serious pitching injuries and hardest from which to recover. MRI needed.

Padres lose 2-1 to Phillies 4-13-16
That was a great defensive play by 1B Wil Myers to C Christian Bethancourt who showed nice athleticism with the tag, to erase two errors (Rosales & Amarista) and prevent a run– to end the inning.
I watch a limited number of games and from what I’ve seen, their defense is fundamentally better but still not sound. Checking their box scores routinely, they’re turning a lot of double plays, as they had 3 more tonite in their 2-1 loss to the Phillies. Defense is a difficult & underrated team skill that takes time to gel– but is worth it. Teams can no longer win a WS without good defense.

Christian-Bethancourt--ATL

Padres reaping benefits of increase in shifts 4-13-16
Here’s another stat for y’all: the Padres have a much better winning percentage when they don’t get shut-out.
Padres early are getting decent individual performances, but don’t put things together as a team. There’s talent here but not enough, so expect more of this for awhile. Andy Green is already an excellent manager, but GM A.J. Preller needs another year or two to draft & develop the players & pitchers he needs to win.

AJ Preller & Andy Green

What’s good for Padres fans, is that we know early. Padres fans have been deceived (and strung along) in the past. Preller now knows he needs to move the contracts, ASAP. Many Padres fans foresaw this scenario, proving Preller had a clear plan for the worst contingency. Fans can see and understand the process, which isn’t as good as winning but at least inspires some real hope for this franchise.

Preller is lined up for both summer drafts, which are his areas of expertise. This could be a HUGE shot in the arm for the organization & their fans. As long as ownership is willing to maintain payroll and draft slot commitments, good things can happen quicker than expected. Remember it’s only baseball, and be thankful it’s here everyday for 6 months.

LHP Drew Pomeranz

Drew Pomeranz notches 8 K’s in shut-out loss to Phils 4-14-16
Once again, at least the fans & AJ Preller know early. I love Matt Kemp but he needs to go, as OF’s Jabari Blash & Travis Jankowski need at least 350-400 PAs for Green & Preller to know if either are a player. Same for Wil Myers & Cory Spangenberg who need 500+ PA’s, and reps at their positions to improve defensively. Off to ARZ in search of a win, or at least a run.

Padres shut out in 5 of their first 10 games, including a MLB-record 30 innings to start the 2016 season 4-15-16
Padres…to…win…must…score…runs

Padres threaten in ninth but fall to D-backs 4-16-16
I have to admit it’s easier to follow this team on the east coast, as I can just go to sleep with justification that I’m not going to torture myself by staying up late for this. It’s much easier to review the videos, wrap-ups & box scores; and catch an occasional game– somehow. When a franchise is rebuilding, fans need to step back and relax– otherwise it’s maddening. A few fans posted the other day about going to a game of their minor league affiliates, which is a great idea for any baseball fan. Win or lose it’s always interesting to follow, and the minors are where fans can get a good look at an organization’s future, and decide for themselves if they’re on the right track.

AAA Padres

Slow-recovering Ross sent for MRI 4-20-16
What a brilliant idea. For the record, I recommended this as soon as his start was to be skipped. That was April 9th. Wait longer, and it costs you more.

Padres place Robbie Erlin on DL with left elbow strain 4-21-16
Padres have to get healthy while doing a better job at preventing injuries. That’s a huge inefficiency in MLB, which smaller market teams must exploit, as they can’t compete dollar-for-dollar with high-payroll behemoths. Padres will continue to lose if they don’t figure this out.

Robbie Erlin LHP

Tyson Ross will not require surgery on shoulder 4-22-16
It’s good to read the Padres got a MRI on Cory Spangenberg too. They now know the exact extent of his quad injury, and can plan and monitor his rehab accordingly. The fans now know too, so they won’t be getting frustrated with him being on the DL, or accusing him of being ‘soft.’ Padres fans will also be interested to hear the exact diagnosis on the right shoulder of Tyson Ross for all the same reasons.
When MLB teams ignore or postpone necessary medical imaging & science, they are reduced to voodoo doctoring.

Cardinals take two out of three @ Petco 4-24-16
I agree with die-hards that the Padres need have brown in their team colors, as their name means ‘friars’ in English. They looked best (IMO) in brown & orange, late Tony Gwynn era (1996-98). These were also their best teams. Coincidence?

Bossman_Jr

Vintage Upton on display this season in SD 4-29-16
No one loves BJ more than me. He’s in his age 31 season, with a .243/.329/.378 line in LF, which is below average for the position. His defense is superior, proving he still should be a CF, where his batting line plays a lot better. He has a cannon for an arm, and kills many rallies with an ease & grace that ignites a crowd & dugout– instantly. His 6 SB w/ 3 CS is a wash, proving he needs to be more selective on steals. His biggest negative is that he doesn’t walk enough, and that’s just who he is. He’s not a superstar, but a bunch of really good teams would love to have him. Only a year-and-change left on his contract and he’s a championship-level CF.

Matt Kemp & BJ

With that said, 1B Wil Myers is clearly the Padres best player. Bossman Jr & Matt Kemp are valuable veteran parts– soon-to-be traded. All the other younger guys have something to prove, before they can be called real players. Solarte (health), Spangenberg (health & consistency), Norris (consistency), and Jay (consistency). Blash is intriguing and needs to play, but he’s blocked by Matt Kemp. Kemp has shown other teams his value already, and he’s on pace for another solid year at the plate. Plenty of AL teams in need are looking at him now and the Padres are definitely for sale– if not now, soon. Preller will be first to market, which is how you get the best return.

Wil Myers 1B Padres

As for the pitching, Shields is still a horse, and a bunch of good teams are coveting his services. His opt-out will not be waived (BOS already asked), which actually hurts his trade value. Big-market teams consider his 3-years remaining (if opt-out is declined) a bargain. Young pitchers are always about stuff & staying healthy. Ross (health) and Cashner (consistency) each have their issues, but are highly prized around MLB. Pomeranz, Rea & Erlin all show promise, but the later two are shut down with injuries at present, proving that pitching prospects are always the toughest to project, due to health.

james-shields

That is why injury prevention is the most important inefficiency in modern MLB. It’s the new OBP & defensive metrics. Despite the conventional wisdom you may hear, injuries don’t “just happen.” True, they are sometimes random accidents, other times they are misfortune or malicious intention; but they always have causes– and most injuries are preventable. This is particularly true for repeatable-motion injuries in pitching. Pitching overhanded generates more velocity, but is an unnatural & destructive motion as compared to throwing sidearm or submarine. Mechanics have to be perfect throughout the kinetic chain, otherwise disabling tears eventually occur in the elbow or shoulder, requiring surgical intervention. The prognosis for pitching again is much better for Tommy John (elbow) as compared to labrum (rotator cuff) surgery, so preventing shoulder breakdowns is of critical importance.

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Pay-off pitch to A.J. Preller late March, 2016
Injuries now cost MLB franchises hundreds of millions of dollars/year in lost player value. While some injuries are inevitable, most of this loss is due to inefficient management and outdated science, which can be corrected with elite baseball brains putting proper injury risk-assessment & prevention systems in place. I can help integrate the advanced metrics, with the physiology and high-performance bio-mechanics. Warning: no illicit PED use acceptable for me, and will be quickly detected if deception is attempted. I do realize you’ve already hired new personnel across the board, including new medical staff. I’d love to work with them (and you), to help this organization win. My posts in this forum demonstrate my baseball expertise, eye for action, management skills and medical knowledge. I’m pretty sure my efforts have helped the off-season Padres in many areas, including advertising & ticket sales. I live a busy life in Florida, so contact me through my site or Facebook message, if interested. Thank you, RS
PS_ I’m still a Padres fan, even if refused or ignored at this time; I just think it would be fun to consult for MLB. How’s that for cojones?

Note: I never received a response, so the above offer is now open to all MLB teams. Until retained, I’ll simply be a Padres fan.

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