False Expectation

For the working magician, the best tool in his toolbox is a little thing we like to call the false expectation. If played right, it can stun an audience into total submission.

1973 Draft

Need a break from the current season? My article on the ’73 amateur draft is now up at Hardball Times. Where’s Dave Winfield when you need him…

“What About Bob,” the tenth episode of the regrettably short-lived Dresden Files, opens with Harry’s father receiving word that he’s landed a job on a cruise ship. Moments later, after telling young Harry the good news, the father suffers a heart attack and dies.

False expectation.

Seems like only yesterday the Padres had a seven-game winning streak and an intact outfield. Now they’ve got a four-game losing streak and an inadequate supply of duct tape.

The latest addition is Jason Lane, who has come over from Houston in exchange for a player to be named or cash. Lane is expected to join the Padres in San Francisco on Tuesday, along with minor leaguers Chase Headley and Drew Macias, who have been recalled from Double-A San Antonio.

If you’re keeping score at home, this gives the Padres an outfield of Brady Clark, Brian Giles, Scott Hairston, Terrmel Sledge, Lane, and Macias. Only three of these guys were on the roster before September, so if the Padres manage to reach the playoffs, presumably we’ll see Giles in center field?

Of course, that is a pretty big “if,” given that the current rotation consists of Jake Peavy and a whole lot of pitchers who aren’t getting the job done. If they can’t contain the Giants (4.18 R/G), how will they fare in Milwaukee against a real offense (4.91 R/G)?

I miss the seven-game winning streak. I miss Milton Bradley and Mike Cameron. I miss the pre-injury version of Chris Young.

I miss Dresden Files.

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73 Responses »

  1. 50: Totally with you. 3-3 is unacceptable. Let’s charge to October.

    Better get the running shoes on boys. There’s no slowing down now.

  2. I’d love 5-1 too, and 3-3 might be unacceptable to many, but with the team in its currently addled state, it might be an optimistic projection. :(

    Teams in the Padres’ overall economic and farm team situation really can’t afford a string of injuries like they have recently endured, but they avoided clustering those for most of the season. The lack of depth really hurts now.

  3. #39 Just voted for Ducksnorts as my favorite blog. Why ? Because it is simply the classiest and most cerebral sports related blog that one could ever take part in and it all starts at the top :)

  4. #52 Well put. I’ll take 3-3 as well. It’s a long season and we wouldn’t be in a position to possibly make the dance if we didn’t earn the right.Unfortunately though I think it will take a 4-2 record in to get in.

  5. I feel strangely optimistic today — I’m not sure why. We have a bunch of stuff stacked against us here.

    I think the move to get Lane was a good one — at least it shows management is doing something to push for the playoffs. Even if he is only a six day fix.

  6. It’s early, but Philly, NY Mets and Dbacks all currently losing.

    Question – What if we tie for Division Title but we finish out of the Wild Card race, does Arizona automatically win the title because of their better head to head against us ? In other words, we are left out based on tiebreaker ?

  7. 56: In that case we play a tie-breaker, in AZ I believe.

  8. 56: Isnt that what happened with us and the Dogs last year. no playoff we get the WC

  9. Thanks Zagz. BTW, Glavine getting rocked tonight at Shea, while Philly down 4-1 in top of the 4th. Philadelphia has to face Hudson and Smoltz in the next two. BTW, Atlanta, though a longshot, is still in this thing !!

  10. #58 But a playoff berth was not in the offing, just the title of being Western Champs.

    This is why I could care less how we get in, whether as Division Champs or WC –WC has as good a chance as any to win a championship

  11. 58: Sorry mis-read you there, if we dont get the WC but tie for the division its a playoff

  12. 59 … Philly with 3 in bottom of 4th … now 4-4 …


  13. GY … that look at the ’73 Draft is fun … thanks! My favorite view is this …

    “Peak season” for signed players: 1979, when 37 players accounted for 412 win shares

    … so the peak season for a draft is 6 years later … not as much as I’d thought … I’d be interested to see if this is pretty constant for all drafts … I gotta think so … wonder if there’s been minor trends …

    Also interesting to see that while Jack Clark was drafted as a pitcher (and came up as a 3B-man), Matt Keogh was drafted as a hitter! That tells me both those guys were amazing athletes!

  14. Padres’ lineup for tonight seems as good as can be mustered …


    … Hairston #2, KK #3 …

  15. In the bad omen department, Philly just took the lead against Atlanta, with Jimmy Rollins scoring after he reached base on a strikeout.

  16. 64: It’s depressing that that is now the best that can be mustered. On the bright side, the Giants’ lineup is still worse than ours! On the dark side, they’re also pitching Matt Cain, and we’ve got Brett Tomko.

  17. Booyah! Bravos up 8-5….

  18. 8-5 Braves now.

  19. 66 … check out what Cain and Tomko have “done lately” …

    Tomko … 12 IP, 9 H, 0 BB, 11 Ks

    Cain … 12 IP, 8 H, 2 BB, 10 Ks

    … well, uh … actually Cain’s done better than I thought … but you get my point … right?

  20. 69: Blind squirrels and nuts, broken clocks and the correct time? Let’s hope for Tomko finds the nut twice more this season.

  21. Dbacks tie it up vs Bucs … still batting in top of 8th …

  22. Phils down 8-6 and are down to 3 outs remaining … and they are at the 7/8/9 spot in the order for bottom of 9th …

  23. Larry Jones adds a 2-spot on the Phils :-)