The Padres came off a winning month for the first time in, uh, three months of play. That’s right, the Padres had a hot July in 2017 where they went 14-11. This led to old media creaming their pants about how the team was really coalescing under Green and we were finally seeing the product of a long rebuild. Then the Padres went 34-53 over the next three months of play up to this past May. The thing is, you can kind of squint at this year’s team and see how they aren’t good, but might be more respectable than we’d thought. Look, bad teams lose tough games, and the Padres have lost lots of those. But there’s some improvement here. The team in July 2017 was buoyed by pieces not integral to the team’s future: Jose Pirela, Trevor Cahill, Jhoulys Chacin, and it kind of happened again in May 2018, with strong performances by flotsam like Clayton Richard, Tyson Ross, and Travis Jankowski, while actual future key pieces like Margot and Hedges scuffle or are injured. Much like Cahill, let’s hope the Padres can reap some future rewards from these players at the trade deadline.
Days Since Marver Actually Wrote Something: 349 days.
Marver claims he is weeks away from moving back to Coastal North County. But even if he does, can we really count on him to produce content. If you haven’t noticed, your old pal Harold James Preller has been pumping out content this week even though he was in Honolulu for work, yet, not a peep from Marver. Once he does move here, I’ll be pleased to release his home address so everyone can show up and kick him in his little nuts until he starts producing some quality content.
This (Last) Week In Padres Twitter – 5/29/18: This was the longest edition of TWiPT yet. I was pleased to highlight my appearance on Three B Zine which, as those that discovered San Diego’s #1 craft beer podcast through me, found is incredibly entertaining and incredibly educational. They’ll be featured again below for a great discussion on Petco Park beers.
Padres In Monterrey: El Informe de la Fiesta: While my trip was obviously marred by Boston Mobile Party DJ Wayne desperately begging Major League Baseball Vice President of Business Communications Matt Bourne to keep me from throwing the first pitch I purchased through their presumably (but not really) valued partner Marriott International (fun fact: I kept notes and Matt Bourne used the phrase “I’m sorry you feel that way” SIXTEEN times during our long phone conversation), it was an incredible time. My biggest advice for Padres fans is to leave the San Diego bubble, travel to other cities, and see the Padres playing in visiting ballparks. I know we all assume Petco Park with all of it’s Constellation Brands beers and overly sugary Phil’s BBQ is the be-all, end-all for ballparks (don’t mistake my snark for distaste for Petco, it truly is one of the finest ballparks in the country, but I can say that because I’ve actually been to other ballparks), but it’s hard to describe how fun it is to discover a new city and a new ballpark while cheering for the Padres.
Winning The Mexican Market: After Monterrey, Now What?: An underlying point of this article was to point out the limited returns in the Padres investing in Mexico; especially when it appears to be instead of investing in North County San Diego or Imperial County, areas formally designated by Major League Baseball as Padres territory. Everytime I shamefully to 97.3 for a Padres game, I’m reminded of how little seemingly ripe areas for marketing like Encinitas, Carlsbad and San Marcos matter to the Partello/Greupner regime running business operations into the ground. Coming off of a sub-83k attendance home weekend series (that’s NOT GREAT BOB), you’d like to see a little more effort from this management team. Just a reminder, we still haven’t seen a ballpark pass program or new promotion this season; meanwhile, almost every other team is passing by this marketing team. Maybe it’s laziness, maybe it’s incompetence. I can hear Partello saying those teams just don’t value their product, but you know what? This is the Padres marketing team not valuing the loyal fans that have stuck by miserable baseball for years.
Gwynntelligence Podcast: Episode 75: Turning Back The Clock: I nearly forgot the Gwynntelligence Team (I use term team loosely [side-eyes at Marver]) even produced some audio content this week. WHAT A WEEK FOR TOTALLY FREE GWYNNTELLIGENCE CONTENT! I think we very sensibly look at what the Phil Hughes trade means, and how it very much fits into the Padres process. At least THIS move fits into the process [side-eyes at Freddy Galvis].
Padres Blogosphere Posts:
Fangraphs – The Padres Paid A Bunch For Draft Picks: This basically recaps what Marver and I said on the podcast about the Hughes trade: that it’s good process for a rebuilding… I MEAN BUILDING team. I do think there are fair questions on whether a mid 2nd round pick/$800k in bonus pool money is worth $7.5M, but I’m willing to defer to the calculators on this. I’ve also heard “Well what else would they have spent the money on?!”. I think the mind is immediately drawn to the free agent market which, agreed, probably isn’t the best venue to spend $7.5M. But I also think the possibly best usage of that lump of money is to take on bad contracts to obtain prospects with it; basically the Headley/Mitchell process, except trying to get an actually good prospect instead of a pitcher with a long history of being mediocre. This isn’t that far off from what the Padres did with the Twins, except I’d rather get AA/AAA talent than a mid 2nd round draft pick, but it’s not egregious; it’s kind of a different strokes for different folks thing. In the end, it was a good move as I’m expecting the Padres to field yet another minuscule payroll next season.
East Village Times – More Than Baseball, Latin American Players Adjust To The United States: This post by Patrick Kusick sheds light on some of the difficulties young Latin American players deal with while working their way through the minors. It’s easy to forget that not only are a great many of the Padres’ prospects dealing with playing baseball at an increasingly difficult level of play, they are struggling with simple things like ordering food, communicating with teammates, and helping to financially support their families at home. Kusick interviews Andres Pagan, employed by the Padres, whom works with the Storm to help players adjust to life in the United States. Given the demographics of the Padres top prospects, this seems like a wise investment, one that could even be expanded to further support these players. We often lose sight of prospects, labeling them as whatever their ranking is in the top prospect rankings, but forget that they are also humans that are trying to get by and better themselves the best they can.
The Golden Age Of Padres Podcasts:
Make The Padres Great Again – The Dull Hum Of A Padres Podcast: In this episode, the MTPGA gang discusses the Phil Hughes trade, tries to remember Edward Mujica’s name, and opts out of discussing the ruckus that John caused on Twitter this week. I wanted to call specific attention to what a great job Craig does recognizing Ted Leitner and his impact on San Diego and San Diego Padres fans. In doing so, he also opted to call for recognition for Ted (and Jerry’s) long time partner, Bob Chandler, who I have made it my ultimate mission to win recognition for. Craig, in his normal classy fashion, honors both of these great men.
Zero Chance Podcast – So You’re Telling Me There’s A Chance: First, the business you’re hear to read. After inputting this episode into the Podcasteralyzer 5000 (TM), it was revealed that the percentage of Rick talking was 21%, a slight decrease from last week. As you can see, after an initial peak in Rickness, things have declined, but we may be reaching an equilibrium inflection point here.
While our data set isn’t huge, I also ran a linear regression, which shows that the percent of Rick may be on an upward trend, but I’m guessing if I threw out the low and high values, we’d be looking at general equilibrium around 20%.
While we’ve focused here on TWiPT on the nuts and bolts of the Rick/Brady speaking time split, we haven’t dug into whether Brady SHOULD be relinquishing the mike more to Rick. The past few episodes have been among my favorite, lending credence to the idea that the current division of labor is about right. I thought Brady and Rick did a fantastic job encapsulating why Uncle Teddy means so much to all of us. And let’s be honest, we’ve probably all had our differences with stuff Ted has said over the years. But similar to how we’ve stuck by this baseball team through thick and mostly thin, we stick by Uncle Teddy because he’s been in the trenches with us. We know he can smell BS based on his old reputation as a wild card that speaks his mind, to the point that he’d always be in trouble with the teams he covered and the managers of stations he worked for. Ted (and Jerry)(and Bob) for me, are as important to me as the actual baseball I listened to them announce, and it’s devastating thinking about Padres baseball without him/them. Best wishes to Ted as he prevails in his fight against cancer.
East Village Times – Patrick and James: Patrick and James break the ice by assuring their listeners that they do PLENTY of prep. The EVT gang takes mailbag questions, providing a wide array of information on Franmil Reyes, Fort Wayne prospects, and discuss Patrick Kusick’s aforementioned post. But what stuck out in my mind was a comment made by James regarding the prospect development this season. He said “80 to 90 percent of them are developing, and taking positive steps in the direction.” I thought about it a lot. Even discussed it briefly with James and Patrick. I realized that I don’t really care about any of the prospects that aren’t 50 FV or above. That’s not to say those guys are totally unimportant; they could take a next step sure, but I don’t feel the need to really get invested in them until they do make a jump from 40 FV to 50 FV. And so, out of the 50 FV guys, we’ve seen a number of them take steps back on the field, injury, or both. Baez and Gore are top, top prospects not just because they were good last year, but because they were wiping out opposing lineups completely. Urias, moved from a pitchers league to a hitters paradise, isn’t hitting nearly as well as he did in San Antonio. Quantrill has overall taken a step back. Arias is hitting like Javy Guerra. Luis Almanzar may as well not exist. Eric Lauer is showing that comparisons of him to Wade Leblanc were very mean and unfair to Wade Leblanc. Are these guys busts? Of course not. But in a season where we’re seeing the first wave fail or lose seasons to injury, I think hyperbolic statements about 80 to 90 percent of prospects “taking positive steps” does fans a disservice.
The 5.5 Podcast – Lord Podcast And The Meltdown Of Padres Twitter: Eric and Danny took the Gennaro controversy by the horns. While taking a leap in logic to “determine” that Lord Podcast was attacking the 5.5 Podcast specifically, the 5.5 boys break down the entire situation, spitting hot fire in the process. It was particularly entertaining to find out that Danny, host of a Padres podcast, rarely watches games and doesn’t listen to any podcasts. As we close out a week that saw the #GoldenAgeOfPadresPodcasts instructed to do more prep and be more professional, 5.5 did a great job of not only recapping the controversy, but fanning the flames so it will never die.
Hells Belles – Asshats In The Outfield: Liddy and Angela march into this episode without their trusty Statboys by their side, and it was a delightful episode. They break down the failings in the outfield, Andy Green being a manager whose balls haven’t dropped, and so many other topics, but let’s focus on something amazing they did. The Hells Belles ladies coined the phrase Travis JanWOWski. I couldn’t believe I hadn’t thought of this to use with the #wordplay hashtag. This alone deserves special recognition.
The Kept Faith – Padre Mixtape With Jeff Terich: When I heard what the subject of the episode was going to be on Twitter, I was almost certain I’d hate it. I loved it. Jeff Terich and the TKF gang (WITH DALLAS!) reviewed the walk-up music for a handful of Padres and broke down what it said about that player using very scientific methods. They also break down Mobile Party DJ Wayne’s inane decision to continue using Blink’s San Diego song to celebrate wins. This episode was highly entertaining and featured very much appreciated Sprung Monkey and Buck-O-Nine references.
Tweet Of The Week:
Put Oscar on the board! Padres Twitter has done a great job of pointing out some of the questionable tweets put out by @Padres, but also how dreadfully boring the account is compared to other teams. There is zippy personality with @Padres, but for an organization that thinks three year old MS Paint dong pictures are a threat to their existence, it seems weird to publicize some guy not only pantomiming inserting and reinserting his penis during sexual congress, he’s also physically spanking his sexual partner. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ I asked MLB what they thought the worst that could happen was if I threw out a first pitch in Monterrey, and literally asked the VP of Business of Communications if he thought I would walk out to the mound, drop my pants, and defecate on the mound. He said, based on my MS Paint dong drawings, they really couldn’t be sure. Anyways, enjoy the air-boning GIF!
Terrible Marver Tweet Of The Week:
Relying on Twitter to do your podcast research is a terrible plan, really for any research, it’s a terrible plan. You’re telling me Marver doesn’t know which podcasts he likes and doesn’t like at this point. This reeked of desperation for human interaction and was the first clue at just how lonely Marver is while he waits to move back. The second clue was when he asked to watch the entire last season of This Is Us together on speakerphone. Here’s an artist rendering of Marver:
Nick Canepa Is An Irrelevant Out Of Touch Old Timer Or Possibly Doing A Bit:
Dunking on Acee Of The Week:
And a new feature to unveil this week!
Lord Podcast’s Royal Proclamation of Superior Podcast Prep And Thus More Listeners That Will Want To Come Back Of The Week:
The proclamation issued this week, as stated by podcast emeritus Lord Podcast, hereby declares that Liddy and Angela from Hells Belles shall be recognized for their superior prep in researching and having at the ready Major League Baseball’s rules regarding slides into home plate and into second base. This will surely lead to more listeners that will want to come back. They most certainly did not just push record.