This is the latest I’ve come out with a This (Last) Week in Padres Twitter. You can thank an insatiable desire to drive to Ensenada to eat fish tacos and drink beer at Cerveceria Transpeninsular which trumped the desire to sit down and write. And let me stress what a great idea that turned out to be. If you don’t have a SENTRI card to cross into Baja on a whim, I don’t even know what you’re doing here. This will be a key issue whenever we do a Gwynntelligence Miles and Points seminar at the Kings Inn where I can sum up how I earned 160,000 points and miles THIS MONTH. Full on bragging here.
Let’s get to the hot, new feature that’s sweeping the internet:
Days Since Marver Has Actually Written Something: 86 days
At this point, does anyone really miss Marver? He’s an apparition that may or may not actually exist.
I had the pleasure of sitting down with John Gennaro last week at 32 North Brewing to do a podcast sans Marver. It was a new experience to sit down with someone who is actually talented on a microphone and knows how to do broadcasting, unlike the hosts of the Gwynntelligence Podcast. We got way off track a few times and spent ten minutes talking about how great Santa Rosa is. We also drank a lot of delicious beers from 32 North, which I had no idea existed, but ended up having a terrific tap room, great beers, and a fun atmosphere. I honestly think this is one of the best episodes of the Gwynntelligence Podcast yet.
I’ve thought about the 5 Win Pass this week. It got an awful lot of publicity, including from us, for something that like 80 people are going to buy. It will barely move the needle in the plummeting attendance numbers. Despite the terrible review, it makes sense for someone that literally wants to go to EVERY game in June. It’s a fine deal for that (in all likelihood, barring a five game winning streak), I just don’t know who this deal is really for. Fans that like this Padres team that much probably have season tickets already. And those casual fans that the Padres should be trying to bring into the fold as repeat customers? They don’t have the time or will to go to every Padres game. They’re the types that might go on a couple Saturdays and will reap the least benefit from a deal like this. So who is this really for? We’ve pointed it out before, but this is the end result of having executives running things with no formal training or education and nothing but a track record of repeat failures.
Padres Blogosphere Posts:
I always like when Dallas McLaughlin rears his head in the blogosphere by writing something. Dallas best captures the issues related to fans booing Jered Weaver for doing exactly what we all expected him to do in this post. I brought this up in my podcast with Gennaro but was so tired and kind of drunk when it came up that I brushed over it, but Dallas brings up the issue that everyone booed Weaver but not the guys that decided to sign him or sign his checks. I think it’s interesting that AJ can do no wrong with large portions of the fanbase (and I’m on #TeamAJ!), to the point where he signs a Jered Weaver who we all knew would suck and then he sucks and people blame Weaver for daring to accept $3M thrust into his face. We would have roasted Towers or Byrnes for this.
On an aside, I’ve seen a lot of stand up comedy. I think no trip to New York City is complete without going to the Comedy Cellar at least once. I’ve seen a lot of great comedians like Jim Norton, Don Rickles, Bob Saget, David Koechner, Dave Attell, Norm Macdonald, highlighted by a 45 minute walk-in set by Louis CK at the Comedy Cellar. I saw Dallas on Sunday and I can just say that his stand up is amazing. I can’t recommend seeing him enough.
In a continuing trend in TWIPT, Sac Bunt Dustin dominates the Padres blogosphere posts, both due to tremendous quality and impressive quantity. Padres Public should just change their names to Sac Bunt Dustin n’ Pals. In this post, Dustin uses win probabilities to show that the 5 Win Pass will expire in all likelihood during the Tigers series mid-month. But here’s the thing. I have no doubt that when the 5 Win Pass expires, the team “generously” extends the offer through the month. This allows Ron Fowler or Wayne Partello to go on the radio and receive accolades for the team’s generosity. But the question then will be, why not just offer it as a month in the first place? Is feathering Fowler or Partello’s ego that valuable? It seems like yet another misreading of the customer base.
Sac Bunt Dustin wrote a great summary of what a missed opportunity not signing Luis Robert is. He captures my feelings perfectly on the topic. The next question should be where are all the profits from this year, next year, and likely 2019 going? The generic “we will spend money when we’re ready to compete” statement is unacceptable as it has no actual terms to it. Boosting salaries up to the $125M-$140M level that revenues can support should be expected, it’s not a bonus, nor does it re-utilize the windfall profits coming from the very profitable rebuild.
One last Sac Bunt Dustin featured here, although there are even more over at padrespublic.com. Dustin analyzes Cosart’s recent work and points out that hitters may be sitting on his cutter, and could possibly use some more breaking balls mixed in. The thing about this is that there’s probably a reason he’s using his cutter so much: it might not suck as much as his breaking pitches. Who knows. Cosart is still a former top prospect trying to find himself so it’s better for the team’s future to give these starts to him instead of Weaver, but at some point, it is going to be more valuable to give these starts to Lockett instead of Cosart. This is the circle of Padres life.
James Clark summarized some conversations he’s had with Lake Elsinore Storm pitcher Eric Lauer. Lauer has been tearing up high-A. When he was drafted, I remember there were a lot of comparisons to fellow lefty Wade Leblanc. Full disclosure, I liked Wade Leblanc, and if we’re being serious, Wade has pitched in the Majors for 9 years now; coming from the Padres’ system, that’s a gold standard. Here’s Wade’s early stats after being a high draft pick out of college:
Pretty good right? Crammed in 53 innings after being drafted and then proceeded to crush at high-A the next season (same path as Lauer). Lauer is doing even better at high-A, currently posting an xFIP of 3.62 and striking out 3 more batters per 9 than Leblanc. Leblanc was known for his well above average change up, but was saddled with subpar high 80’s velocity. Lauer throws in the low 90’s but may not have a secondary pitch as good as Leblanc’s change up was scouted to be. With the extra velo, Lauer is looking to be a better prospect and we should all be eager to see how he does once he hits the real world of AA baseball.
This post stated the obvious that the Padres marketing department went after a promotion where they could do the very least they thought would be palatable. What was more interesting were Ron Fowler’s quotes about how he didn’t want to lower beer prices because that would lead to rampant drunkedness in the stands, and would lose a friendly, family atmosphere fostered by endless alcohol ads, beer fests, and never being more than 11 feet from a beer stand. I want to issue a SHUT UP RON FOWLER, but he provides me personally with so much entertainment. I’m so torn.
The Golden Age of Padres Podcasts:
Obviously, we can start with my podcast with John Gennaro.
This was a really large week for the Golden Age of Padres Podcasts. This write-up was exhausting.
I’ve been an unabashed fan of the work that EVT is doing with their podcast this season. James and Patrick have brought in some interesting guests, and I like their segment getting into various sabermetric measures each episode. This episode had some good analysis of ongoing performances of current players, especially Solarte, as well as some good recaps of the roster moves at the big league and minor league levels. Then it got to Luis Robert, where an apologia for failing to sign him was issued. I wrote a lot more but I think this captures my feelings. Here are some highlights:
“He could be Yoan Moncada, obviously Moncada hasn’t proven anything in the bigs, at the same time he could be a bust”
Moncada has a wRC+ over 150 at high-A, AA and now AAA and is only 21 years old. He is the #1 prospect in baseball. You know who could be a bust? Literally every prospect and draftee. If you think fear of a bust should sway signing risky high ceiling prospects then get ready to book a ticket to Mediocre City.
James began implying that Luis Robert would be lackadaisical after getting a big paycheck, and then says Padres head of international scouting Chris Kemp needs to “look at the player face to face in his eyes and see what kind of passion he has for the game”, again implying that Robert doesn’t have that passion.
From all reports, Luis Robert is in incredible shape. If we can’t count on our development system and team personnel to foster an environment to coach and guide a player like Luis Robert to success, than maybe there’s a problem in the system or with the personnel. From all reports, this isn’t the case. If you have faith in the system or in Chris Kemp or any of the other people Preller has installed, then this shouldn’t be a concern.
The gang brought in VOSD colleagues Andy Keatts and Scott Lewis to discuss their game experience at a freezing cold game in which Andy, literally getting frostbite at the ballpark, decided that soft serve ice cream was the remedy. The gang discusses their confusion with backlash at the Padres’ 5 Win Plan, noting that no matter how you look at it, it is better than the status quo. This I can agree with, it is. And viewed in a vacuum, sure, it’s fine. But it’s like the 400th example of this front office trying to cut corners in what it offers its customers and I think the 5 Win Plan backlash was the culmination of this frustration for many. Then, to ensure their place as the #1 local stadium talk podcast, they dig into SoccerCity.
EVT had a huge week with THREE podcasts in a week. At this point, they are single handedly putting out more Padres audio content in a week than the entirety of 1090’s programming week. James and Patrick interviewed Jonathan Mayo from mlb.com to discuss the upcoming MLB draft. Mayo previews a bunch of options, but let’s be honest. The only acceptable selection is anyone but Royce Lewis.
Craig and John undertook an interesting topic in how many casual fans are rooting for the wrong things, which ultimately manifested in booing Jered Weaver for doing exactly what we want out of this team: losing (for a purpose). Craig then uses his Gulls experience to defend the 5 Win Plan. While I respect where he’s coming from, the Gulls who have surprisingly high ticket prices and still sell out the Sports Arena aren’t in the same situation as the Padres who are having trouble cresting 18k on most weeknights. The demand curve is totally different.
Capping off a big EVT week, James and Patrick snuck in Mudcat to close out the week on Friday. To tell you the truth, I kind of listened, but was distracted going through the border crossing at the time. You can’t go wrong with Mark Grant though.
During his #PadresWednesday appearance, Ron Fowler took credit for the 5 Win Plan, which he stole from the Milwaukee Bucks. Just for reference, the Bucks were a playoff team.
Tweet of the Week:
And this (last) week’s Jaggy goes to…
Terrible Marver Tweet of the Week:
SHUT UP ABOUT THE CHARGERS ALREADY FOR THE LOVE OF ALL THAT IS HOLY AND GOOD
And the hottest and newest feature here on This Week in Padres Twitter!
Nick Canepa Is An Out of Touch Irrelevant Old Timer Or Maybe Doing A Bit Tweet of the Week:
In our first edition, we have a tie!!!