Quickly name three of the San Diego Padres’ starting lineup. How about three of their starting rotation or bullpen? It’s not easy if you’re not from San Diego. This Padres team is largely made up of unknown players.
After their ill-advised spending spree of a couple years ago that saw them try to stack the deck with sluggers while turning a blind eye to an abysmal outfield defense and mix of players that just didn’t gel, this team finally looks to be on track with a set direction. That’s the good news. The bad news is this team is a long way from being competitive.
2016 Record: 68-94
2016 Moneyline Record: -0.30 Units
2016 Over/Under Total Record: 80-77-5
Current World Series Odds: +25500
Current Odds To Win NL: +1100
Current Odds To Win NL West: +10000
Regular Season Win Total: 66.5
So far, the biggest story out of Spring Training for the Padres is the funky delivery of Carter Capps. He’s a fun player to watch given his border-line illegal delivery, but he’s a reliever coming off of Tommy John surgery. When that’s your big story, you are in a bit of trouble.
Yes, this team did just lock up what appears to be their new cornerstone player in outfielder-turned-first baseman Wil Myers. That at least gives the fans one recognizable face, Myers has hardly proven himself to be a face-of-the-franchise type player yet. Sure, he was an All-Star and has proven himself to be a very good player, but he shouldn’t be the star player on a good team and that’s the point. This is not a good team.
Somehow the Padres managed to score enough 686 runs last year. That’s nothing to write home about and still puts them in the bottom third in baseball in runs scored, but they did out hit a number of teams including the Yankees, Royals and Mets.
With the losses of Melvin Upton Jr. and Matt Kemp at the trade deadline, this may have actually taken a step backwards, at least in the short term.
The key players to watch on the offensive side are Hunter Renfroe and Manual Margot. The later should join the team midseason after a taste of coffee last year. The former is the starting right-fielder. He, too, had cup of coffee last year and left a lasting impression with four homers in 11 games.
The play of the youngsters in the important thing this year for San Diego and that also includes catcher Austin Hedges who after years of hype is finally ready to take the everyday mantle behind the dish.
The youngsters—and Myers—are good all-around players. Yangervis Solarte is a serviceable player, too, despite a bad spring and some family issues that may impact his play on the field.
As for the rest of the players you have trade-offs with guys like Ryan Schimpf who showed great power, but little contact and Travis Jankowski who has great speed but may have trouble getting on base with enough consistency to use that speed.
So, with youth, inexperience and role players filling the everyday lineup, the Pads are also turning to what is likely the worst starting rotation in baseball.
Jared Weaver, Clayton Richards and Jhoulys Chacin are the veteran arms at the top. Weaver had an ERA over five last year and Chacin stat at 4.81. Richards pitched well, but had just 11 games due to injury. In fact, he hasn’t started more than 11 games since 2012.
They also have Trevor Cahill who will try to convert back to being a starter after finding success in the Cubs’ bullpen. Cahill was a failed starter before the transition so optimism of him being anything more than a No.5 starter is limited.
In the bullpen, Capps, Brandon Maurer, Ryan Butcher, Kevin Quackenbush and Brad Hand actually form a solid group. That said, none really stand out as a dominant closer—except maybe Capps in healthy—leaving this team lacking in defined roles and that usually doesn’t play well over a full season.
All in all, this team is just lacking in nearly every facet of the game. The offense is made up of a few good young players along with has-beens, never-weres and never-will-bes. The pitching is worse in the rotation than a number of team’s Triple-A staffs and the bullpen, while reasonably deep with names—doesn’t look dominating enough to make up for the weak rotation or offense.
April 3-6: at Dodgers
April 7-9: vs. Giants
April 10-12: at Rockies
April 14-17: at Braves
April 18-20: vs. Diamondbacks
April 21-23: vs. Marlins
April 24-27: at Diamondbacks
April 28-30: at Giants
The Padres open the season against the Dodgers who they actually played reasonably tough last year. The division winner was 11-8 against this cellar dweller team who posted the same record against their second opponent: the Giants.
When you’re the Padres, it’s hard to find a matchup that’s in your favor. After all, only the Twins had a worse record than San Diego last year. So, the Padres will have a tough road in April just considering how they stack up comparatively, but it gets even harder when you consider the team has just one off-day in the month so after Spring Training, they’re getting thrown right into the marathon that is the Major League Baseball season.
View this years MLB game match-ups with the complete seasonal schedule for all MLB teams. Each year we will be updating the season schedule with the current information including final scores, so bookmark this page.
The 2017 Major League Baseball season is tentatively set to begin on April 2, 2017, and feature three games, including the 2016 World Series champions Chicago Cubs facing off against the St. Louis Cardinals, which will be ESPN's first Sunday Night Baseball game of the year.
The 88th MLB All-Star Game will be hosted by the Miami Marlins and will be played at Marlins Park on July 11, 2017. It will be televised nationally on Fox.
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