Archive for the ‘San Diego Padres’ Category

Padres' Gyorko strikes out in the top of the sixth inning against the Rockies in the National League MLB game home opener in Denver

There is no risk in ripping the San Diego Padres. They’re a franchise bobbing in a vast sea of Dodger blue and Angels red, fighting for their sliver of market share with an underwhelming roster. I wouldn’t say their fanbase is disengaged but ripping the Padres doesn’t make many waves.

That goes double when the topic at hand is a cheap pre-arbitration contract for an unsexy player. There is nothing really to gain. But the deal is worth mentioning, because it says a lot about the future.

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MLB: Los Angeles Dodgers at San Diego Padres

People don’t like Brian Wilson. Baseball fans are straight up put off by Brian Wilson’s whole…thing. His shtick or his persona or the cut of his jib; whatever it is, it is unpopular with a large swath of the baseball watching public.

This widespread antipathy towards Brian Wilson thirsts for comeuppance and, in the 8th inning of the lid-lifter in San Diego, got exactly what they wanted.

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New York Yankees v Toronto Blue Jays

Things are different for the San Diego Padres. They are a franchise without stakes, so technically all their signings are low risk. When Josh Johnson signs a one-year deal with the Padres for $8MM plus options (adding $1.25MM if he makes 26 starts and a $4MM team option if he makes fewer than seven starts), it looks like a decent low risk, high reward signing. The big right-hander becomes the latest in a long line of pitchers attempting to treat the Padres like a rebound relationship after posting a nightmare season with the Blue Jays in 2013.

Because the dollar amount is as insignificant as the Padres chances for contention, this signing looks like a no-brainer for them. They don’t actually need Josh Johnson to be anything for them, so even if he’s awful, it doesn’t really deter their plans for future third-place finishes.

Which is good because there’s a strong chance Josh Johnson just keeps on being awful as he was in 2013. The potential outcomes of Josh Johnson’s performance represents the difference between the Padres trading an effective pitcher, possibly reaping a compensation draft pick or jettisoning a broken player. But which is most likely? Just what are the Padres going to get in 2014?

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MLB: San Diego Padres at Colorado Rockies

Every Friday, the Getting Blanked crew makes a prop bet of sorts with one another having something to do with baseball games over the weekend. Of the four competitors, whoever wins the prop bet is able to dole out a punishment on the colleague of their choice – UNLESS ELVIS ANDRUS AND SOME DOPE’S WEDDING TOSS A MONKEYWRENCH IN THE WHOLE ARRANGEMENT. This week’s punishment was watching and recapping Tuesday night’s San Diego Padres and Colorado Rockies game in Denver. Because of #PropHate, I watched this game on purpose.

The Narrative

Webster’s defines “déjà vu” as…”a feeling that one has seen or heard something before”. Webster’s also defines “hacky lede” as “using the Webster’s defines device.” But last night’s Rockies/Padres matchup was déjà vu for Prop Hate/I Watched This On Purpose.

The most recent entry before this one also featured the Rockies and Padres. In fact, we were one day away from witnessing the very same pitching matchup two IWTOP in row (Jorge De La Rosa and Andrew Cashner start today’s Rockies/Padres tilt). You could accuse the Getting Blanked crew of East Coast bias or you could face facts: these two teams are awful.

This narrative (these two teams stink) is, well, it’s pretty much true. The Rox and Pods sit side by side in the NL West standings, comfortably below .500 and comfortably free of any lingering stakes or meaning in their respective seasons.

Despite similar lots in life, these two teams are striking in their contrast. The Rockies have one star (Troy Tulowitzki), two really good players (Dexter Fowler and Carlos Gonzalez, currently out injured) and a whole lot of God-fearing bros of various levels of replacement. As they are the Rockies, they have no pitching of which to speak. None. No, no, he doesn’t count. Nope, neither does he.

Take Colorado’s starter, Jeff Manship, for example. That’s it. Jeff Manship. That’s the joke.

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ian kennedy sucks question mark

It is really easy to make jokes at the expense of Diamondbacks general manager Kevin Towers. In the eyes of most internet-based baseball analysts, Towers places too much value on intangibles, gives his tough guy manager too much say in personnel moves and seems to dump quality players at the drop of the hat, often overpaying marginally talented ballplayers.

Sometimes, it works. The Snakes won the 2011 NL West with a ragtag bunch of castoffs (or so the narrative goes) and the 2013 edition of the DBacks sits in second place in the division, trailing the Reds by four games in the race for the second Wild Card spot.

Today, in a counter-intuitive move, Towers traded one of the key contributors to that 2011 division title Ian Kennedy, to the San Diego Padres for left-handed reliever Joe Thatcher, double-A prospect Matt Stites and a compensation pick in next year’s draft.

What a joke, right? Ian Kennedy was a 5 WAR pitcher just two seasons ago! He’s just in his first season of arbitration eligibility! What is Towers doing?!

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Colorado Rockies v San Diego Padres

Every Friday, the Getting Blanked crew makes a prop bet of sorts with one another having something to do with baseball games over the weekend. Of the four competitors, whoever wins the prop bet is able to dole out a punishment on the colleague of their choice. This week’s punishment was watching and recapping Wednesday night’s Colorado Rockies and San Diego Padres game. We call this #PropHate.

The Narrative

Three of the five teams that comprise the National League West division are notable. The defending champion San Francisco Giants are staggering through their schedule, losing to teams like the Mets while fielding a roster of Quad-A players filling in for injuries and watching their previously dominant starting rotation crumble before their eyes. The Los Angeles Dodgers have bought every free agent and acquired every regretful contract that ever existed over the last ten months, and they still struggled mightily in the early going before the promotion of Yasiel Puig and resurrection of Hanley Ramirez brought them back to life. The Arizona Diamondbacks lead the division, thanks to the holy triumvirate of above average pitching, great team defense and America’s First Baseman, Paul Goldschmidt.

Then there are the Colorado Rockies and the San Diego Padres.

Here are the best things you can say about these two teams:

Padres: Their stadium sure looks nice, and I hear that the climate in San Diego is wonderful.
Rockies: They haven’t lost as many games as I would’ve thought they’d have lost.

For the purposes of deciding postseason baseball and eventually a champion of the 2013 season, Colorado and San Diego might as well not play baseball against each other. It’s a meaningless tilt. But the system of baseball’s regular season schedule is built in such a manner that even the least important games of the summer, which will have no real bearing when things matter in September and October, must be played out.

… and so, last night, out it was played.

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SO MANY DODGERS JOKES. JUST, TOO MANY TO PROCESS. Zombies received the ceremonial first pitch in San Diego last night, which is surely a coincidence considering World War Z hits theatres today.

Call me a sap but I think this is actually really fun/funny. Though the zombies featured here do not appear consistent with mythology created by World War Z author Max Brooks, which you should totally read.

Anyway, Yasiel Puig hit a home run and surely vanquished these zombies because he’s basically Baseball Brad Pitt.

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