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Jim Furtado
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Editor - Baseball Primer


Padres Newsbeat

Monday, October 05, 2015

Pat Murphy won’t return as Padres’ manager |

As for Murphy, who spent six seasons managing in the Padres’ system at various levels, he talked late last week about this experience and the biggest regret that he had.

“I don’t think I got a chance to be me,” Murphy said. “I didn’t get to set the tone the way that I wanted to do it. I found out that my inner self isn’t great unless I really get to put my mark on it.

“I’m grateful for the opportunity to have experienced this, but at the same time, the competitor in me wishes that I could have had more impact at a deeper level in how we play, the mentality.”

Jim Furtado Posted: October 05, 2015 at 07:24 AM | 20 comment(s)
  Beats: managers, padres, pat murphy

Friday, September 25, 2015

“The Babe” at Petco

An eventful night at the ballpark:

A woman who went to see the San Diego Padres left as a brand new madre. Petco Park announced that a baby boy was born during Thursday night’s game against the San Francisco Giants, the first in the ballpark’s 11-season history.

The San Diego Union-Tribune reported that the baby was born “around the third inning” and was named Levi. Donna Borowy, an on-staff nurse at Petco Park who is also a midwife, delivered the baby near the Padres store. Borowy told KGTV Ch. 10 in San Diego that the mother said she started having contractions at 4:30 p.m., but still made it to the game.

Not sure if she stayed for the rest of the game.

The Yankee Clapper Posted: September 25, 2015 at 07:54 PM | 4 comment(s)
  Beats: fans, happy birthday, kids, labor, padres, petco park

Thursday, September 17, 2015

Josh Johnson, aiming for comeback, to have third Tommy John surgery -

This doesn’t sound promising.

Padres right-hander Josh Johnson, still aiming for another comeback, is having a third Tommy John surgery soon, according to sources.

Jim Furtado Posted: September 17, 2015 at 09:55 AM | 8 comment(s)
  Beats: josh johnson, padres, tommy john surgery

Sunday, August 30, 2015

Madden: It’s panic in the owner’s box season in baseball - NY Daily News

Andrew Friedman is not going anywhere.

And what if the Dodgers, with their $300 million payroll, somehow miss the postseason — or if they somehow don’t make it out of the first round despite having Clayton Kershaw and Zack Greinke pitching Games 1 & 2? If either happens, Don Mattingly will most surely be fired as manager, but president of baseball operations Andrew Friedman will also have a lot of ‘splainin’ to do. Like why, with all his money and prospect resources, didn’t he adequately address the Dodgers’ biggest needs at the deadline — a frontline starting pitcher a la Price or Hamels, and bullpen help for closer Kenley Jansen, instead settling for mediocrities in Alex Wood, Mat Latos and Jim Johnson? And why didn’t he send struggling rookie Joc Pederson back to Triple-A to work on making hitting adjustments and regaining his confidence instead of continuing to force-feed him, hopelessly overmatched, in the majors? And lastly, what was he thinking giving oft-injured Brandon McCarthy four years and $48 million last winter, and why is $87.5 million of that $300M payroll being paid to guys who no longer play for the Dodgers?

Saturday, August 15, 2015

Matt Kemp hits first Padres cycle |

As he chugged hard between second and third base in the ninth inning on Friday, Matt Kemp was well aware he had never hit for the cycle in a big league career that has spanned 10 seasons.

Kemp just wasn’t aware that the Padres—a franchise born in April 1969—hadn’t had one of their own, either.

Jim Furtado Posted: August 15, 2015 at 07:58 AM | 7 comment(s)
  Beats: matt kemp, padres

Saturday, August 01, 2015

MLB trade deadline losers | FOX Sports

Last winter’s genius is this summer’s dummy, at least according to Ken Rosenthal.

Ken Rosenthal has been a favorite on this site for a long time. His reporting skills are fantastic. He also seems like a very nice guy, a nice guy who would be great to watch a game with at the pub or at the ball park. Like a lot of reporters, however, I’m not particularly enamored with his analysis. Although I like his reporting on my favorite team, I wouldn’t want the Red Sox following his suggestions. Neither should the Padres fans.

Case in point one: the Padres getting Starlin Castro. This kid certainly has some talent. His poor defense and lack of patience at the plate make him a second division starter, though, not the kind of shortstop a playoff contender should be looking to acquire.

First of all, even accounting for the crazy spit-balling nature of the deadline, it’s absurd to ask for a franchise player such as Goldschmidt in his prime. A Padres source told the Arizona Republic that the mention of Goldschmidt was not serious, but really, that’s the least of it, anyway. If the Padres truly are going for it, they should have added more than Rzepczynski. They should have acquired a shortstop such as the Cubs’ Starlin Castro, and taken their best shot.

Case in point two: at last year’s Winter Meetings, Rosenthal thought getting Matt Kemp was a good idea. Now, I didn’t think it was an awful idea, I just thought it wasn’t a good idea. Kemp’s contract, even at $15 million per year over the next five seasons, just didn’t seem like a good gamble.

Dodgers busy during Winter meetings

Kemp is headed to the Padres along with catcher Tim Federowicz and $32 million for catcher Yasmani Grandal and pitchers Joe Wieland and Zach Eflin. The Dodgers then are expected to flip Eflin to the Phillies as part of the package for Rollins.

Approval from the commissioner’s office is needed to complete the deal, but that is a given. The review of medical records is a far bigger concern — Kemp, Grandal and Wieland all have significant injury histories, and officials on both sides are nervous about possible hang-ups.

The Padres, if the deal goes through, will be getting a steal — Kemp at $15 million per season for the next five years. Federowicz will replace Grandal, teaming with Rene Rivera at a position where the Pads were strong. There is no other way to say it — the trade will be a huge coup for new general manager A.J. Preller and the club’s ownership, one of the most inspired moves in club history.

Suggesting that the Padres should be digging a bigger hole, while making fun of Preller, isn’t very helpful analysis.

Jim Furtado Posted: August 01, 2015 at 02:02 PM | 11 comment(s)
  Beats: a.j. preller, general managers, padres

Diamondbacks GM Dave Stewart: Padres asked for Paul Goldschmidt in trade

If this is true, it’s really a stupid way to conduct business. It’s a complete waste of time. Such an offer is predicated on the stupidity of the other guy. It’s insulting and counterproductive.

On the radio, he said the Diamondbacks “did not get a very positive response” from the Padres in their attempts to acquire Kimbrel, an All-Star closer. He was then asked if the Padres were reluctant to make a deal within the division.

“I don’t know if it was not wanting to trade in the division,” Stewart said, “but I can tell you the quality of players that they asked for, including our first baseman, Goldschmidt—”

Stewart was interrupted by one of the hosts, who asked if he was saying what it sounded like he was saying – that the Padres wanted Goldschmidt for Kimbrel.

“Now you get it,” Stewart said. “I’ve had some dealings with their club during the winter meetings. You can’t fault a club for asking. You never know. On a given day, maybe I was injected with some kind of drug that would make me say yes.”

Jim Furtado Posted: August 01, 2015 at 07:58 AM | 30 comment(s)
  Beats: diamondbacks, padres, trade rumors

Friday, July 31, 2015

Yankees remain in Kimbrel market; could active Astros join them? -

Yankees looking to build a “super bullpen”.

The Yankees have expressed a willingness to pay all of the $28 million remaining through 2017 on Kimbrel’s deal, but it isn’t known what they are offering in the way of players. They declined to surrender shortstop prospect Jorge Mateo, as was already reproted on

Jim Furtado Posted: July 31, 2015 at 09:45 AM | 5 comment(s)
  Beats: padres, trade rumors, yankees

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 |

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 |

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 |

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 |

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


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 |

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 |

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

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