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Sunday, July 26, 2015

Angels GM Bill Stoneman handles some business the old-fashioned way - LA Times

The Angels’ present need is clearly identified: a starting left fielder. They would prefer to make a trade without disrupting the major league roster or surrendering their top prospect, pitcher Sean Newcomb. The mild-mannered Stoneman sounded bolder about the likelihood of a significant trade now than he ever did in his long run as general manager.

“The expectation is we’ll be able to get something done,” he said.

The Angels have been linked to Jay Bruce of the Cincinnati Reds, Gerardo Parra of the Milwaukee Brewers, Ben Revere of the Philadelphia Phillies, Justin Upton of the San Diego Padres, and Carl Crawford and Andre Ethier of the Dodgers, among others.

Jim Furtado Posted: July 26, 2015 at 09:57 AM | 1 comment(s)
  Beats: angels, bill stoneman, padres

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Benches clear in San Diego thanks to a Padres pitcher throwing his gum at Hector Sanchez | HardballTalk

These guys clearly don’t like each other’s gum.

Some serious “Play The Game The Right Way Theatre” going on in San Diego last night, as benches cleared in the ninth inning of the Giants win over the Padres. The reason? These two teams like to throw gum at each other.

Jim Furtado Posted: July 22, 2015 at 08:41 AM | 5 comment(s)
  Beats: giants, padres

Sunday, July 19, 2015

Padres Rained Out At Home

For the first time since the Padres started playing baseball in San Diego, they had a home game rained out in July. Sunday afternoon’s weather stopped the scheduled game between the Padres and Rockies in the top of the 5th inning (Colorado was leading 1-0).
...
The last rainout at Petco Park came on April 4 of 2006, a span of 820 home games.
This series we saw the first time a game in our town has ever even been DELAYED by weather in the month of July. The only other July delay in San Diego history came in 2009 and that was because of a swarm of bees.

Game got rained out in Anaheim, too. This is something that just doesn’t happen in Southern California.

Joyful Calculus Instructor Posted: July 19, 2015 at 11:11 PM | 15 comment(s)
  Beats: padres

Clint Barmes hits go-ahead homer in Padres win | MLB.com

In the eighth inning of the Padres’ 5-4 win over the Rockies, Barmes jumped on a fastball from reliever Tommy Kahnle, pulling a screamer nearly into the visiting dugout.

Anxious and excited, batting in a tied game with a runner on first base, Barmes stepped out of the box, took a deep breath and gathered himself before proceeding with the at-bat.

“It was backing off and not trying to do too much,” he said afterwards.

Instead, the Padres’ shortstop actually did a lot, hitting a two-run home run to help San Diego run its win streak to four, tying their season high.

The funny thing is, Barmes almost didn’t get the chance to swing away in the eighth inning after Melvin Upton Jr. walked to start the inning.

Interim manager Pat Murphy was prepared to ask Barmes to get a bunt down, sending Upton to second base and getting him in scoring position in a 3-3 game.

“[Bench coach Dave Roberts] and I discussed it back and forth,” said Murphy. “At the last minute, Doc gave me some information that changed my mind.”

Which was what?

“I’m not going to let the Rockies know that,” Murphy said, smiling. “… But credit Doc Roberts.”

Jim Furtado Posted: July 19, 2015 at 07:48 AM | 2 comment(s)
  Beats: padres

Padres, Astros have held preliminary trade discussions on starting pitchers | SanDiegoUnionTribune.com

Sources told the Union-Tribune that the Padres and the Astros have held preliminary talks on starting pitchers, with right-handers Tyson Ross and Andrew Cashner believed to be among those mentioned. There are no indications of anything imminent, and one source said the two sides had not spoken on the subject since early this month.

Reds ace Johnny Cueto is the top trade target for the Astros, the Houston Chronicle reported late last month, not least because his impending free agency could make the cost more palatable. Sources confirmed Cueto remains high on Houston’s wish list.

Jim Furtado Posted: July 19, 2015 at 07:06 AM | 9 comment(s)
  Beats: astros, padres, trade rumors

Wednesday, July 15, 2015

Teardown Artist «

Rany Jazayerli eviscerates A.J. Preller.

It’s as if Preller were unaware of the first rule of Rounders: “If you can’t spot the sucker in your first half-hour at the table, then you are the sucker.” Preller was the sucker. Preller was the guy obsessed with acquiring big names — Upton was the no. 1 pick in the 2005 draft! Kemp finished second in the MVP vote in 2011! Myers was AL Rookie of the Year in 2013! — while his competitors were working the angles. Middlebrooks was a power guy — in 169 games from 2012 to 2013, he hit 32 homers and had 103 RBIs! Craig Kimbrel has led the NL in saves for four straight years! For a player development expert, Preller’s focus on the quick and obvious fix last winter was surprising and even somewhat disturbing. It also was disastrous.

Jim Furtado Posted: July 15, 2015 at 08:28 PM | 35 comment(s)
  Beats: a.j. preller, padres

Monday, July 13, 2015

Maybin having a career season with help from Seitzer

Health and a coach that you click with have a possible impact on a player. It will be interesting to see if Maybin can sustain this level of play.

“From the moment I’ve met him,” Maybin said, “I’ve been comfortable with the way he’s conveyed his message to me. It’s made a lot of sense. And the confidence he has when he’s telling you about the things that he believes are going to help you — all it does is make you want to believe in it.”

Belief is fine, but Maybin wasn’t playing regularly at the outset of the season. He was sharing time in center field with Eric Young Jr., who is now in the minors. Maybin hit .175 (7-for-40) in April, but since May 1, he’s batting .315 (74-for-235) in 63 games with a .375 on-base percentage and an .803 OPS.

Maybin endured plenty of frustration the past two years when he dealt with wrist, knee and biceps injuries and barely had 300 combined at-bats in those seasons. But this year has been wonderfully different for Maybin. The talk about sky-high potential and unfulfilled promise, talk that has come with the territory since Maybin was the 10th overall pick in the 2005 draft and sought a foothold in the big leagues has subsided. Seitzer has convinced Maybin to focus on the process not the results. And at long last, the results are there, too, like never before.

“It’s been wonderful being healthy,” Maybin said. “Just being healthy, by being out there, you know you still got a chance to do something that affects the game somehow, some way. It’s so refreshing, and to be able to do it in Atlanta, feeling like it’s so close to home.

Jim Furtado Posted: July 13, 2015 at 10:12 AM | 13 comment(s)
  Beats: cameron maybin, padres

Thursday, July 09, 2015

Padres, A.J. Preller could both sell and buy at trade deadline | SanDiegoUnionTribune.com

Whichever direction Preller chooses, he’ll have strong backing from the the owners, who’ve been enamored with Preller’s tireless approach to player development and scouting, both stateside and abroad.

“We’re ecstatic with the collaborative environment, the creativity, the will to win, the competitive nature,” Dee said. “Some of the things we’ve done to this point haven’t worked out, but we’ll jump right back on it and keep swinging.”

Jim Furtado Posted: July 09, 2015 at 01:41 PM | 5 comment(s)
  Beats: a.j. preller, padres

Wednesday, July 08, 2015

Video: Must C: J. Upton robs a home run | MLB.com

Jim Furtado Posted: July 08, 2015 at 07:19 AM | 4 comment(s)
  Beats: andrew mccutchen, justin upton, padres, pirates

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

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