Winter Leagues Begin

Yeah, the Hawaii Winter League has been going for a while, but the Padres don’t have any entrants there, so what do we care. The Arizona Fall League and Mexican Winter League both begin Tuesday. I think I’ve tracked down all the Padres playing there, but let me know if I’ve missed anyone…

Arizona Fall League

Peoria Saguaros

Beyond Fukudome

I try to deal in facts as much as possible, but Peter mentioned in the comments a rumor that cannot be ignored: Apparently the Padres are looking at Japan’s Kosuke Fukudome as an option in the outfield for 2008. Jackson Broder at East Windup Chronicle compares Fukudome to Bob Abreu (hat tip to my own bad self at Knuckle Curve).

I forgot that I’ve actually seen Fukudome homer at Petco Park.

  • 2B Matt Antonelli — The U-T’s Tom Krasovic reiterates in a recent chat that the Padres would like “Antonelli to grab the job in spring training.” Over at, Corey Brock notes that Antonelli “will get a long look.” If two primary sources are saying the same thing — well, I think where there’s smoke, there may be fire.
  • RHP Jonathan Ellis
  • C Nick Hundley
  • RHP Neil Jamison — Local kid (Ramona).
  • LHP Will Startup — Part of the payment for Royce Ring. He’ll always enter to the Rolling Stones, whether he likes it or not.
  • OF Will Venable — Played mostly in right field for San Antonio (Baseball America‘s 2007 Team of the Year) but he’ll get a look in center field this winter.

Detroit outfielder Cameron Maybin also plays on this team. (See full roster for more details.)

Mexican Winter League

Aguilas de Mexicali (roster)

  • RHP Steve Watkins
  • RHP Jared Wells

Caneros de los Mochis (roster)

  • LHP Arturo Lopez

Ex-Padre Ruben Rivera will play for Culiacan, while Kevin Walker will play for Guasave. Other blasts from the past include Erubiel Durazo (Hermosillo), Karim Garcia (Culiacan), and Felix Jose (Mochis). No Fernando Valenzuela or Teddy Higuera.

The Venezuelan Winter League starts Thursday; the Dominican Winter League starts Wednesday, October 17. I am still looking for information on Padres entrants in those leagues.

So, anyone going to the AFL this year?

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98 Responses »

  1. 46: I’m not disagreeing, but the 3 years before that his ERA+ went 155, 115, 100. And after he was traded from the Nationals in 2006, his ERA+ for Arizona was 127. His declining strikeouts do worry me, but Arizona’s team defense was pretty good this year (9th in DE). Maybe he was pitching to contact more, which usually makes me cringe, but he’s a renowned cruiser.

    I’m definitely not interested in anything more than 1 plus an option for him.

    47: I’d say yes. 57 innings above A ball, but he did well for San Antonio.

  2. Everyone does realize that these pitchers will be able to pitch in the minor league’s again next year right?

    Additionally, Geer and LeBlanc had long college careers so saying they have only thrown 50IP in the high minors doesn’t mean as much as it would for a kid coming straight from high school.

  3. Re: 52 I think we are looking to the minor league guys because they are cheap and the pads have control over them for the next 6+ years. Its like fixing a hole with cement instead of duct tape.

  4. When is carillio suppose to be ready to pitch again?

  5. 52: If you bring them up too soon, they get shelled, the team loses games, and you put them on the clock to arbitration. Geer’s long college career doesn’t change the fact he doesn’t strike anybody out. Well, not “anybody,” but his K rate is bad.

    53: When people are talking about using 6, 7, or 8 pitchers to fill two holes in the rotation, that’s tape. None of those pitchers have Peavy’s stuff, and neither Peavy nor Perez would have been called up as soon as they were if we’d any other options. By not rushing them, you get those 6 years when the pitchers can help you more.

    My guess is the Padres try to trade for Igawa again, who has some upside, and then go with Tomko for the 5th spot. Meh to Tomko. Worse performance than Livan, less durable.

  6. 54: Carrillo had surgery in mid-May. Estimates for recovery have become crazy aggressive recently, sometimes they’ll talk about a guy coming back in 12 months. More realistic is getting back into minor league or complex games late next summer. coming to ST 2009 almost rehabbed, spending some time in the minors. Almost 2 full years before he’s ready to go in the majors, my guess.

  7. As long as we’re bargain hunting, what about Carlos Silva? Kind of a younger Livan; doesn’t strike anyone out but doesn’t walk many either, 180+ IP four years in a row, puts up a good ERA+ except for 2006 when he had gopheritis.

  8. 54: He’ll pitch next season, but most likely he’ll need at least 1/2 a season in the minors to get back to where he was in ’05. He’ll probably be a Padres rotation guy starting in 2009.

  9. Re: 49…he pitched his way to the WS with the Diamondbacks.

  10. 56: I think he’ll work his way into the ‘pen at the end of ’08…

  11. Re: 55 What I meant was with the young guys (when they’re ready) would create a rotation that is set for several years, instead of patch working together a rotation each year by giving guys a 2nd chance (tomko, jennings), a chance to prove thier worth after injury (Prior, Clement, Wolf), or guys who are at the end of thier career and want to play thier last years in a big park so they can pad thier stats and live in a nice sunny place (maddux, wells shilling, hernandez)

  12. 61: There’s going to be attrition. That rotation isn’t going to be set. Peavy’s probably gone after 2009, Maddux is gone after 2008. LeBlanc and Inman have the best chances to succeed.

    There’s also the chance that calling them up too soon wrecks them beyond repair. Dennis Tankersley looked like a better pitching prospect than either of them.

    I will be very, very surprised if the team has any intention of putting two rotation spots in the hands of any current Padre farmhands. They might end up doing it, but only because their preferred options didn’t work out.

  13. 60: I’d rather not even bother. He gets to the bigs in the bullpen, hopefully we’re competing, he’s going to be under enormous pressure to throw the hell out of the ball. I like him a lot as a starter, rather not take that kind of chance for 6 weeks or so of relief. But it might be a nice reward even if they don’t use him. Of course that would require the team to care more about personnel than preserving open range in the locker room.

  14. 62: I meant for next year. I don’t see them going with any of our prospects for 2008 unless other plans fail. After they have another year of (let’s hope) minor league success in 2008, then they’re in the plans for 2009.

  15. Re: 62 Im thinking more long term than 08 really, your right that LeBlanc/Inman/others will not be ready for the 08 season. If things dont work out they could be up by the ASB but who knows.

    My point is that im sick of trying to fill 2-3 holes in the rotation each years with re-treds/damaged goods/simi-retired guys and trying to catch lightining in a bottle. When was the last year where the pads had a solid #5 stater all year? The last I can think of was valdez who KT traded at the deadline because he wanted to give hitchcock one alst shot in SD.

  16. KG @ BP said this in a recent chat …

    James (Lubbock, Texas): Kevin, off the top of your head who has the most improved farm system from this time last year to today? My Rangers have to be in the conversation, if not at the top of the list.

    Kevin Goldstein: The three teams that immediately come to mind are the Rangers, Padres and Nationals.

  17. Another upside from Schill would be his penchant for posting in fan forums/blogs. Do we know any of those?

  18. Re: 68 he has his own blog

    kind of like kurt warners wife who calls into sports talk radio stations to denfend her husbend.

  19. Man did you see Schilling pitch last night? I’m finally convinced the man is a GOD!

  20. #66: Valdez was not a solid #5 starter. His ERA+ was actually worse when the Padres traded him in ’04 than David Wells’ was this year when they released him.

    #69: Here is Schilling’s blog:

    It’s fascinating stuff. I wish more pro athletes would do this sort of thing.

  21. Re: 70 im sure if shilling did post in a blog it would look something like that.

  22. #72: Except that he does, and it doesn’t.

  23. Re: 71 True but its not bad for a fifth starter he at least provided some consistency there, wells was a decent pitcher to start the year he just fell apart in his last few starts.

  24. Re: 73 I know I was j/k

  25. 66: Hernandez is a lot better pitcher than Valdez was at this point in their careers. Better performance, a lot more rugged. If you were okay with Ishmael, you’ve got to be okay with Livan.

    One of the biggest benefits of signing Hernandez is that it allows you to take more chances in that final rotation spot. There’s no sure thing in baseball, but Livan throwing 200 roughly league-average innings is close.

  26. Re: Im ok with Hernandez for next year as long as its only a 1 year deal and there a backup plan for him as well.

  27. Does a rotation of Peavy, Young, Maddux, Hernandez, other mid level guy beat the Rockies, D-backs, and dodgers next year?

  28. did anyone else see this:

    “Claimed IF Luis Rodriguez off waivers from Minnesota”

  29. 78: It would have beat them this year. I don’t see why the final starter has to be a mid-level guy. There are risky free agents who could be more than mid-level, and we still might see a trade.

    Peavy, Young, Maddux, Igawa (example), Hernandez is the best starting staff in the NL West next year. That’s only half the battle to winning the division.

    79: Yeah, and it made me wonder why we bothered. How many futility infielders do we need on the 40 man roster? Claiming Stansberry last year left us no room to protect Soria….that kid with a 75/19 k/bb ratio in 69 innings.

  30. Is Corey Brock an idiot, or is he a trusted source of information? In his latest entry, he sees neither Bradley nor Cameron returning. From everything I’ve read in the UT, it seems like KT is more than open to bringing back Milton. I gotta think that Milton would be looking for some security, so I would be stunned if we we DIDN’T get him back.

    And as GY said the other day, more Antonelli as a starter talk for next year. There’s starting to be a great deal of smoke.

  31. Re: 81 wont Bradley be out until mid season?

  32. 82: Yes, but Brock is saying he won’t be a Padre, period. Based on the comments we’ve seen from KT et al, I find this really hard to believe.

  33. I’m getting depressed with all of this talk about 2008, while there’s still baseball being played…

  34. Peoria Saguaros’ first game starts soon … you can find box score info here …

  35. 84: Who’s still playing?

  36. LOL @ 86

    TW, I really don’t think the Padres will let Peavy walk after ’09… We can’t look at the guys they’ve let walk in recent years b/c none of them were top-tier guys still in their prime. I would say even with Jake’s expected price (minimum: high-teens per year) Jake is more similar to B. Giles & Hoffman circa 2005/6 offseason than any other player who walked away from San Diego without an offer.

    Changing subjects:

    I think the following minor league players have a chance of being an MLB starters:

    - Carrillo
    - Leblanc
    - Ramos (I have to include him – but I have my doubts)
    - Geer (any serious upside? he’s intriguing)
    - Ayala
    - Luebke (I hated this draft pick when it happened – but I love this kid now)
    - Schmidt
    - Miller
    - Latos
    - Breit
    - Simon (???) Rookie-ball Dominican

    Now as TW pointed out, there will be some attrition (“a lot” really) but I’m seriously amped about this team’s present & future…

  37. 87: If Alderson’s around, I really doubt they sign Peavy after 2009 to the kind of contract top-tier pitchers are getting. 5 years, 16-18 million? Don’t see it. Their best chance would seem to be redoing the last two years of his current deal and tacking on 2-3 more.

    On the prospects, this is absolutely quick and dirty, but my estimated odds of those players being league-average major league starters:

    Carrillo – 50%
    Leblanc – 45%
    Ramos – 20%
    Geer – 20%
    Ayala – 30%
    Luebke – 25%
    Schmidt – 20%
    Miller – 15%
    Latos – 15%
    Breit – 15%
    Simon – 10%

    Maybe cut those percentages in half for the odds of being a good SP, and in half again for the odds of being a top of the rotation starter. And that’s not out of cynicism in regard to the Padres. It’s the nature of prospects. If you looked through a Baseball America or a Sickels Annual from 5 years ago, many of the names are fringe major leagues or never made it.

    Nobody in the world is a lock. Some guys won’t make it because of injury. Some are short on stuff. Some it just won’t happen for, and the odds of that happening are higher for the players who are furthest away. One might be left unprotected on the 40 man so we can carry another futility infielder or a backup catcher who can’t hit, get drafted in the Rule 5, and turn into a closer for another team. Hey, that already happened.

  38. Here’s an idea for CF. How about bringing back Shane Victorino? While the Philly fans seem to love him, they have Michael Bourne who they may want to give a shot as well. I don’t know if I would deal Chase Headley for him, but the Phillies do have a need for a third basemen. Perhaps there is a better combination of players that can make this happen. And if the Phils save money at 3B, they can still try and re-sign Rowand to play CF.

  39. TW, I’d pretty much agree w/ those percentages… The cool thing is, we’re not in a situation where if our one starting pitching prospect (i.e. Jared Wells) doesn’t pan out, we’re SOL… There’s enough depth there that there’s a decent chance we have at least one above average pitcher to add to Peavy, Young, and co…

  40. The Phillies are not re-signing Rowand. They plan to use Bourn/Victorino. On a related note, I was told an Atlanta area paper (AJC?) said the Braves plan on using Jeff Francouer in CF (where he played in the minors) so while we’ve seen lots of discussion about Cameron going to Atlanta, chances are Atlanta doesn’t intend to spend additional money on their OF.

  41. 92: That’s certainly interesting. I wonder what that does to the value of center fielders in free agency.

  42. What about signing Cory Patterson for CF?

    I like the idea of Schilling…

  43. As nice as it would be to have Patterson’s speed I can’t imagine he would help a playoff team…no power, terrible OBP and fringe defense in center….seems like a guy to avoid at all costs.

  44. Not to rain on everyone’s parade(again) on Schilling, but as much sense as that makes for the Padres to bring him in, I can’t see it happening.

    If I remember correctly his family is more comfortable in the north east because of his wife’s health situation(skin cancer some time ago)

  45. Re: 94 didn’t the Padres trade Freddie Guzman

  46. 95: Agree. You go after a Patterson-type player when you’re a few years from competing and can take a chance on him realizing his potential. He’s been bad for way too long for us to roll the dice on him.

    97: Patterson’s got a big defensive edge on Guzman, but at least Freddie knew what the heck the strike zone was.