Wednesday, April 13, 2011

San Diego Padres Baseball

The baseball season is two weeks old and it's time to make final judgments about what's wrong with my local franchise.

Buddy Black
Not Buddy Black.
Manager Black spent the winter reading about how he is a master of "small ball" and started to believe he was the reincarnation of Fielder Jones. So now, any time the Padres get a man on base late in a game, Black calls for a bunt. It doesn't matter if the runner is already on second base or if the batter hasn't laid down a successful bunt since T-ball.

Ryan Ludwick
The Padres clean-up hitter last year was Adrian Gonzalez (30 or more home runs for four consecutive years). This year it's Ludwick who hit .211 with the Padres last year and is batting a sweet .094 this season. Ludwick is totally intimidated by the Padres pitcher-friendly ballpark.

Brad Hawpe
Hawpe replaced Adrian Gonzalez at first base. He is a washed up outfielder who was cut by Colorado when he couldn't even hit at mile-high Coors Field any longer. He is batting .138 with San Diego. And he can't field his position. When holding on a runner Hawpe stands too far away from the base to reach it on pick-off plays.

The Payroll
The Padres payroll, $43 million, is half what it was just three years ago. It ranks 28th out of 30 teams. Their second highest paid player is Ryan Ludwick, so we're not talking a lot of value here. They are the most profitable baseball franchise in the major leagues, exceeding even the New York Yankees.

The Front Office
What the Padres lack in players they more than make up for in executives. They have 18, eight-freaking-teen, vice-presidents. They may not be able to bat, but they can sure swing a mean spreadsheet.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Pessimist. I understand your observations, but I would give it more than a week before concluding that the ship has sunk. From my perspective, starting pitching has been better than far, and the bullpen is mostly fairly good. As with last year, that means the hitting can be pretty crappy, which it most assuredly is, and the team might still win. At least they aren't the Dodgers, who, I expect will lose games because they are no good, and fans because they do not think fan safety is particularly important.