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Friday, June 26, 2015

Tyson Ross on His Walk Rate | FanGraphs Baseball

Interesting.

Yeah, Ross noticed that. “Hitters are just a little more patient with me. The slider maybe isn’t as enticing for guys to chase, or maybe they’re just more aware of it, and they’re just trying to lay off it, and I find myself behind in counts more.”

The difference here is bigger. Ross has lost around 35 swings on pitches outside of the zone this year. And, given his out-of-zone contact rate, that means he’s lost 24 strikes. Turn 24 strikes into balls, and you’ll see some more walks. In fact, turn these “new balls” into six walks, and add it to the two new walks above from the first-pitch strike game, and remove those eight walks from his line, and his walk rate this year would be 3.53 per nine, which is in line with his career number (3.69) and his rest of season projection from ZiPs (3.52).

Jim Furtado Posted: June 26, 2015 at 04:36 PM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: padres, sabermetrics, tyson ross

Thursday, June 18, 2015

Padres’ Wil Myers to undergo left wrist surgery, expected to miss eight weeks | UTSanDiego.com

Thursday in Arizona, Myers will have a bone spur in his left wrist trimmed. The Padres hope he can resume baseball activities in six weeks, but eight weeks might be more realistic. By then, it will be mid-August, Myers will need a significant amount of rehab games and sitting out whatever remains of the season could be the wiser course of action.

Jim Furtado Posted: June 18, 2015 at 06:51 AM | 12 comment(s)
  Beats: padres, wil myers

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Did lack of player development lead to Bud Black’s firing? | FOX Sports

Firing the manager is easy. Building a winner is hard.

Jim Furtado Posted: June 17, 2015 at 10:49 AM | 7 comment(s)
  Beats: bud black, managers, padres, pat murphy

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

Murphy named Padres’ interim manager | MLB.com

The Dave Roberts era is officially over.

Jim Furtado Posted: June 16, 2015 at 03:00 PM | 10 comment(s)
  Beats: dave roberts, managers, padres, pat murphy


Monday, June 15, 2015

San Diego Padres likely looking for sizzle in Bud Black’s successor | FOX Sports

So, what if the Dodgers’ Joc Pederson had not made that amazing catch on a potential game-winning hit by the Padres’ Justin Upton with two on and two outs in the ninth on Sunday?
Would a dramatic victory and series triumph over the rival Dodgers have mattered to the Padres’ itchy ownership? Or would they have just gone ahead and fired Bud Black as manager anyway?

Jim Furtado Posted: June 15, 2015 at 06:05 PM | 8 comment(s)
  Beats: bud black, managers, padres

3 reminders that long extensions for young players are still risky

Jedd Gyorko

He was a 24-year-old rookie middle infielder who hit 23 homers while playing half his games in Petco Park. How do you not want to lock that guy up? The only real question is when to stop offering him more and more years on the extension. He had a 113 OPS+ when he was 24, which meant it was reasonable to expect even more from him as he entered his prime, and that even more would mean he would be a perennial All-Star.

Instead, he was one of the worst everyday players in baseball last year, hitting .210/.280/.333. He’s hitting .210 again this year, and he’s doing it with even less power. There was a glimmer of hope last year, as Gyorko got relatively hot after the All-Star break, but he lost his job to Cory Spangenberg this season and was banished to the minors again. He’s 26 now, and he’s been a .220-or-worse hitter for almost two calendar years now. He’ll make $13 million in 2019, which is an absolutely stunning amount for a player struggling this mightily.

Even when the problem with a pitcher is hard to diagnose, like with Cahill and Romero, there’s still an element of assumed risk that’s easy to understand because pitchers are supposed to be fragile and mercurial. Gyorko reminds us that hitters can be just as weird, and considering how far removed we are from the version the Padres thought they were locking up, it looks like the problem had more to do with poor evaluation and overreacting to a fast start. It’s the new front office regime that has to pay for it, too.


Thursday, May 28, 2015

In Which Derek Norris is Blamed for Home Run Problems, Plight of Humankind | Padres Public

Remember when some sabermetricians scoffed at the idea that guys like Brad Ausmus are very valuable.

Maybe the biggest lesson here is that framing pitches involves many different parties, from the catcher to the pitcher to the hitter to the umpire. For his part, Norris seemingly hasn’t done a good job receiving this season despite a track-record that includes mostly league average-ish numbers. Norris’ framing deficiencies, especially when compared to last year’s Rene Rivera-Yasmani Grandal catcher platoon, have caused Padres’ pitchers to fall behind more often in the count, to occasionally change where and what kind of pitches they throw, and to (perhaps*) more often attack the heart of the plate rather than the edges.

On the other hand, the pitching staff has done a poor job of hitting its spots this season, at least from what we can tell. Both on the pitches hit for home runs — and, presumably, doubles and singles — and on previous pitches in those at-bats, the staff’s inability to consistently throw the ball near Norris’ target has likely cost them both a fair number of strike calls and a much healthier ERA. When working well, pitch framing involves both ends of the battery executing its part. Right now, it appears the Padres don’t have either end performing particularly well, and it’s led to a stretch of uncharacteristically poor results from the mound.

Jim Furtado Posted: May 28, 2015 at 10:09 AM | 15 comment(s)
  Beats: derek norris, padres, pitch framing

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

The 10 Cheapest Teams of the Last 10 Years

5. 2007 Florida Marlins: 71-91

Actual salary: $30.5 million / Translated salary: $35.4 million
Highest-paid player: Miguel Cabrera / $7.5 million
Players over $1 million: four
Best position player: Ramirez / 5.3 WAR / $0.4 million
Best pitcher: Sergio Mitre / 2.3 WAR / $0.38 million
It’s hard to think of a more quintessentially Marlins team. Okay, actually, it’s not—you’ll see a few Marlins teams that are even more Marlin-y down below. This team, though, certainly looked like it had the young core of a perennial contender: Ramirez, Cabrera, Johnson, Nolasco and Anibal Sanchez, all 24-and-under. It’s hard to imagine a core this great getting away from any team other than the doggone Marlins.

Also only 25 at the time, with a ceiling as high as the sky and 16.2 career WAR under his belt before this season started was Dontrelle Willis. Oh Dontrelle, how we miss you. This would be the last season that Willis would throw 100 major league innings — plus he was fifth on the whole team in wRC+.

4. 2007 Tampa Bay Devil Rays: 66-96

Actual salary: $24.1 million / Translated Salary: $28 million
Highest-paid player: Crawford / $4.12 million
Players over $1 million: six
Best position player: Carlos Pena / 5.5 WAR / $0.8 million
Best Pitcher: Kazmir / 5.1 WAR / $0.42 million
This isn’t the only year this is the case, but in 2007, Florida’s two teams barely combined to create the salary of a single mid-market team. In Tampa, this was the last year that the team was called the Devil Rays and it was also the last time they weren’t the coolest doggone team around, what with their storming into the 2008 World Series the next year.

In case you forget why that 2008 team was so surprising, things were still pretty rowdy with this 2007 version. Breakout contenders do not, for instance, tend to have players like Elijah Dukes taking hundreds of plate appearance. They tend to not have 5.53 staff ERAs. But, doggone it, that’s what happened. By 2008 Opening Day the Rays’ payroll nearly doubled, up to $43.7 million, with the team paying (comparatively) big bucks for Troy Percival and Cliff Floyd in free agency.

 

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: May 26, 2015 at 10:55 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: astros, marlins, padres, payrolls, rays, royals

Thursday, May 21, 2015

How pitch framing has hurt Andrew Cashner in 2015 - MLB

How much this is impacting other pitchers on the team? Tyson Ross’ walk rate has exploded this season.

Jim Furtado Posted: May 21, 2015 at 03:13 PM | 2 comment(s)
  Beats: andrew cashner, padres, pitch framing, sabermetrics

San Diego’s handling of Triple-A skipper Murphy highly unusual | FOX Sports

A simple case of a team valuing an employee? Perhaps. But some in the industry view the Padres’ actions as highly unusual — and perhaps a sign that the Pads want Murphy to replace manager Bud Black or, at the very least, join the team’s coaching staff.

The Padres’ 20-20 record is fueling industry-wide speculation that Black could be in trouble. Ownership expects to win after opening the season with a club-record $109 million payroll. General manager A.J. Preller is in his first full season, and like ownership, inherited Black.

One Padres official, however, said that the team’s desire to keep Murphy is not a reflection on Black’s status. Rather, the Padres consider Murphy an “impact guy,” even though he is only at Triple-A, the official said.

A rival executive expressed skepticism with those claims.

“(Murphy) must have been made promises — big ones,” the executive said.

Jim Furtado Posted: May 21, 2015 at 06:28 AM | 2 comment(s)
  Beats: bud black, manager, padres

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

San Diego’s handling of Triple-A skipper Murphy highly unusual

Pat Murphy is the Padres’ Triple-A manager. The Brewers want to hire him as a major-league coach. And the Padres have balked at letting him go.

A simple case of a team valuing an employee? Perhaps. But some in the industry view the Padres’ actions as highly unusual — and perhaps a sign that the Pads want Murphy to replace manager Bud Black or, at the very least, join the team’s coaching staff.

The Padres’ 20-20 record is fueling industry-wide speculation that Black could be in trouble. Ownership expects to win after opening the season with a club-record $109 million payroll. General manager A.J. Preller is in his first full season, and like ownership, inherited Black.

One Padres official, however, said that the team’s desire to keep Murphy is not a reflection on Black’s status. Rather, the Padres consider Murphy an “impact guy,” even though he is only at Triple-A, the official said.
A rival executive expressed skepticism with those claims.

“(Murphy) must have been made promises — big ones,” the executive said.

Ponies?

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: May 20, 2015 at 09:34 AM | 8 comment(s)
  Beats: a.j. preller, brewers, bud black, coaching, managers, padres, pat murphy

Tuesday, May 19, 2015

TV Ratings Up, But Teams Still Dependent on Cable Providers

Baseball is dead.

Before getting to baseball’s dependence on the health of major cable companies, here is a brief look at some early season numbers. The first month of the season has seen big increases in viewership for national games on Fox Sports 1 and MLB Network, including double the amount of viewers aged 18 to 34 watching game on Fox Sports 1. The Chicago Cubs have doubled their ratings after their increased commitment in the offseason as well as the arrival of Kris Bryant. The Kansas City Royals have done the same coming off their World Series appearance. The Houston Astros have seen an increase in viewership after finally resolving their local disputes, at least as far as getting their games on all the local cable packages. The Arizona Diamondbacks have seen their highest ratings in a decade while the games of the Cleveland Indians, Detroit Tigers, Kansas City Royals, St. Louis Cardinals, and San Diego Padres rank first in their broadcast territories among all shows. A recent article by Maury Brown at Forbes showed that baseball games beat playoff games from the NHL and NBA in many markets across the country.

The ratings so far this season are a great indicator of baseball’s popularity. Not only is baseball beating playoffs in other sports, it is also beating first-run shows on networks.


Sunday, May 17, 2015

Downtown Ollie Brown Dies at 71

Ollie Brown had power to spare, both in terms of his ability to hit home runs and make throws from right field. According to former Padres and Pirates catcher Chris Cannizzaro, only Roberto Clemente had a stronger throwing arm than Ollie Brown. That is high praise indeed.

Bruce Markusen Posted: May 17, 2015 at 08:22 AM | 12 comment(s)
  Beats: obituaries, padres

Monday, May 04, 2015


Padres To Promote Austin Hedges - MLB Trade Rumors

Why is he rated so high? Despite his hot start in AAA, he profiles as a defense-minded backup.

Hedges is ranked as the No. 23 prospect in baseball by Baseball Prospectus, No. 50 by MLB.com, and No. 74 by ESPN’s Keith Law (Insider-only). Hedges’ defensive ability wins widespread acclaim from nearly all prospect analysts. MLB.com praises his receiving, arm, and potential game-calling ability, while Law notes that framing pitches should prove to be a strength as well. Hedges wins less praise for his hitting — he batted a weak .225/.268/.321 at Double-A San Antonio last year. He’s off to a much better start in 2015 for Triple-A El Paso this year, however (.343/.413/.552 in 75 plate appearances), and his strong standing among prospect analysts suggests he might be so valuable defensively that he won’t need to hit much.

Jim Furtado Posted: May 04, 2015 at 06:31 AM | 10 comment(s)
  Beats: austin hedges, padres

Friday, May 01, 2015

Carlos Quentin is retiring at age 32

He can now retire to pursue he’s lifelong dream - hunting and killing Zack Greinke.

Carlos Quentin, who’s been playing at Triple-A for the Mariners after being released by the Braves last month, has decided to retire at age 32.

Ken Rosenthal of FOXSports.com reports that Quentin left the Tacoma team Thursday after going 3-for-17 in five games.

Atlanta acquired Quentin from San Diego as part of the Craig Kimbrel trade, but his inclusion was strictly to help balance out the money and the Braves ate his entire $8 million salary in releasing him.

Quentin retires as a career .252 hitter whose power, plate discipline, and ability to get plunked by tons of pitches helped him post a strong .831 OPS. When healthy he was a middle-of-the-order asset, posting an OPS above .800 in six of his nine seasons, but constant injuries limited him to fewer than 130 games in all but two of those years.

 


Saturday, April 18, 2015


Tuesday, April 07, 2015

Bill James Mailbag - 4/7/15

Hey, Bill! Long-time Braves fan here (through some good years, and some VERY bad ones) and it really hurts to see the Braves trade away Craig Kimbrel. I know they claim to be “rebuilding,” but Kimbrel has been one of the best relievers in the game over the last couple of years, and he’s only 26. Wouldn’t you consider…that position, at least…to be already “built?”

It’s Upton. The signing of BJ Upton was utterly inexplicable, for reasons I should probably be polite enough not to outline, but once he was signed, his contract became a huge millstone that was going to drag the organization down for a long time. They almost had to get Upton’s money off the books before they could START re-building, and how are you going to do that? You’ve got to give the other team something they DESPERATELY want—Kimbrel—in order to get them to accept something that they don’t want to have anything to do with—Upton’s contract. I think it was a smart move on Atlanta’s part to do that, but it is terribly sad what has happened to the organization. Just two or three years ago, with Heyward and Freeman, Martin Prado and Brian McCann and Andleton Simmons, it looked like they really had something going. It got away from them with stunning quickness. It always hurts the fans to give up players that they have grown fond of.

Taking a game from yesterday, let’s say we gave Johnny Cueto, who got 21 outs in a Reds win without getting the decision, .77 of a win (Jumbo Diaz got the win by getting one out at the right time). Do you think that over the course of a full career, or even a full season, that a starting pitcher’s win total would be significantly different if wins were calculated in this way? They would certainly get credit for any game the team won, but they would lose some points for every non-complete game. Seems to me it might actually balance out in the end….thoughts?

I’m surprised that we don’t KNOW yet. Here’s what I think: 1) We should definitely fix the rules so that wins and losses are scored as rationally as they can be, regardless of whether it makes a difference or not, 2) I’ve been talking about starting a campaign to try to get this done for years, but it’s one of those things. . .you have to focus on it or you’re just wasting your time, and also, everybody who gets involved in the effort wants to fix the rules a different way, so you have to work out some consensus among yourselves before you can even begin the process, and that takes a year of organizational meetings before you can really start, 3) I don’t understand why we don’t KNOW what difference it would make, since it wouldn’t be a huge project to re-score wins and losses from 1950 forward, so that we wouldn’t be operating in the dark as to what difference it would make, and 4) SPECULATING about what difference it would make, when the answer is knowable but unknown, would be lazy and counter-productive, since we should never speculate about that which we COULD easily know.

Re: the BJ Upton signing being “utterly inexplicable.” I’ve been trying to understand the signing for a long time now, and I always arrive at “bad idea” or “poorly considered”—which is a step short of “utterly inexplicable.”...

Well, not to be accusatory, but BJ Upton just does not hustle. This is very rare at a major league level; there are really only two major league players non who just don’t hustle, plus there are some older guys who conserve a lot of energy but have paid their dues and can get by with it. But it is politically incorrect to SAY that a player wont hustle, even if he won’t, so this kind of escapes the record—not the stat record, but the conversational record. People don’t talk about it; it’s considered impolite. So when the Braves signed this contract, I thought, “Jesus Christ, did they miss the memo on this guy? Did they not scout him? Or have they so completely bought into this notion that it is improper to charge a major league player with laziness that they actually don’t SEE what anybody else can see?” Which happens all the time outside of sports; people don’t see things that they ought to see, because they don’t want to believe in them. It doesn’t usually happen IN sports, because if you do that in sports you will lose. So I don’t know. . .either they didn’t do their homework, or they talked themselves into believing that it’s just a bad rap; there is no such thing as a major league player who doesn’t want to play. To me, it is inexplicable.


Sunday, April 05, 2015

Padres Acquire Craig Kimbrel, Melvin Upton Jr.

Only makes sense to trade Kimbrel (never mind dump B.J.) if you’re rebuilding… but I thought they’d, y’know, get something…

The Braves will acquire [Cameron] Maybin and [Carlos] Quentin, [Ken] Rosenthal tweets. The Braves will also acquire pitcher Matt Wisler, as FOX Sports’ Jon Morosi tweets. [Fangraphs’ Kiley] McDaniel tweets that the Braves will also receive outfield prospect Jordan Paroubeck. Rosenthal tweets that the Braves will also receive the 41st pick in this June’s draft.


Friday, April 03, 2015

Tony Gwynn items set for auction

Items from the collection of Mr. Padre, Tony Gwynn, who passed away last year, will be put up for bid by SCP Auctions.

The auction house has secured more than 100 items from Gwynn’s widow, Alicia, including three All-Star Game rings, a pair of Silver Slugger batting awards and some of the original contracts he signed, including his first professional baseball contract.

The most unusual item is a massive glass shrine made for Gwynn by former San Diego Padres owner John Moores.

Win Big Stein's Money Posted: April 03, 2015 at 06:56 AM | 8 comment(s)
  Beats: padres, tony gwynn

Thursday, April 02, 2015

Grantland (Keri): 2015 NL West Preview

Yasiel Puig bat flips and Hunter Pence GIFs.  What more do you need?

Chris Fluit Posted: April 02, 2015 at 03:44 PM | 3 comment(s)
  Beats: diamondbacks, dodgers, giants, nl west, padres, rockies

Monday, March 30, 2015

Mets find lefty reliever, land Torres from Padres

Still smarting from Josh Edgin’s season-ending elbow injury, the Mets addressed their left-handed relief problem in two quick strikes on Monday, acquiring Alex Torres from the Padres in exchange for pitching prospect Cory Mazzoni and a player to be named, then Jerry Blevins from the Nationals for outfielder Matt den Dekker.

depletion Posted: March 30, 2015 at 08:59 PM | 7 comment(s)
  Beats: mets, nationals, padres

Monday, March 09, 2015

The Favorites For Hector Olivera - BaseballAmerica.com

It will be interesting to see how much he signs for.

Jim Furtado Posted: March 09, 2015 at 06:41 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: braves, cuban free agents, dodgers, hector olivera, padres

Saturday, March 07, 2015

Is this Minor League pitcher actually Andrew Cashner’s clone? | MLB.com

He’s just like him, without the talent.

Jim Furtado Posted: March 07, 2015 at 08:31 AM | 1 comment(s)
  Beats: andrew cashner, padres

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