Padres Farm Report (11 May 08)


Portland at Iowa, postponed due to rain. The two teams will play a doubleheader on Sunday, with the first game featuring Wade LeBlanc and Rich Hill, a guy I wouldn’t mind seeing in San Diego if the Cubs have no use for him… Infielder Tom King has been promoted from High-A Lake Elsinore.

Double-ASan Antonio 5, Midland 0

Drew Macias: 2-for-3, 2 BB
Craig Cooper (DH): 0-for-3, BB
Chad Huffman: 1-for-2, 2 BB
Kyle Blanks: 2-for-4
Jose Lobaton: 2-for-4, HR
Will Inman: 5.1 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 0 HR, 3 BB, 7 SO
Neil Jamison: 1 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 HR, 0 BB, 0 SO

Another strong performance from Inman. His control is a little off (3.79 BB/9), but when you’re striking out a batter an inning and holding the opposition to a .187 batting average, that can be forgiven — just ask Chris Young.

High-AModesto 7, Lake Elsinore 5

Cedric Hunter (DH): 1-for-3, 2 BB
Eric Sogard: 2-for-5
Rayner Contreras: (didn’t start): 0-for-2
Mitch Canham: 1-for-3, 2 BB
Javis Diaz (LF): 0-for-4
Ernesto Frieri: 3.1 IP, 4 H, 2 R, 1 HR, 1 BB, 3 SO

A start for Frieri? Interesting. Of his previous 117 career appearances, all but seven had come out of the bullpen.

Low-ASouth Bend 4, Fort Wayne 3

Bradley Chalk: 1-for-3, 2 BB
Andrew Cumberland (SS): 0-for-5
Shane Buschini: 0-for-4
Felix Carrasco (DH): 3-for-3, 2B
Yefri Carvajal: 1-for-4
Justin Baum: 3-for-4, 3B
Jeremy Hefner: 4 IP, 5 H, 1 R, 1 HR, 0 BB, 2 SO (8 GO)

Tagged as: , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

33 Responses »

  1. Supposedly there’s another move coming – a relief pitcher?

  2. #1@Masticore317: From the UT:

    “The Padres are close to acquiring a relief pitcher in a trade. If the deal gets done Sunday, left-hander Joe Thatcher could be demoted to Triple-A. The Padres could have retained Rusch by optioning Thatcher, who is 0-4 with a 6.75 ERA and a .357 opponents’ batting average.

    Towers acknowledged Saturday that the 2007 bullpen was deeper and better constructed than this year’s relief corps, which has numbered at least three long relievers more often than not. The GM, heeding scouts such as Bochy, said he wants to give Black more relievers with “good stuff” in front of eighth-inning specialist Heath Bell.”

  3. It’s nice to see that they are taking care of the bullpen issues.

  4. #3@Steve C: I wonder who it would be. Like I’ve said before, a bad offense can be overcome with strong starting pitching and a strong bullpen. A bad offense plus a bad bullpen is what has given us the worst record in the league. If Towers brings in another power arm, that would give them four, to go along with Bell, Ledezma, and Henn.

  5. I’m happy anytime KT is stockpiling arms.

  6. I keep getting frustrated. Yes, Edmonds was killing us, but I don’t get why Black could have just sat him more. It reminds me of the Nevin vs. Nady a few years back. Nady was cooling on the bench and Nevin was sporting a sub 700 OPS and Bochy kept running him out. It took KT trading away Nevin to stop him getting played. It seems like Edmonds could be a decent 4th outfielder, maybe used strategically and hopefully getting some value from him on a trade. Maybe not, but this releasing Edmonds does not really solve any problems.

    Secondly, are we playing for this year or later? If the latter, trading for some reliever that will be gone next year seems pointless. Yes, you don’t want to play .333 ball all year, but be smart, not reactive, about the changes we make.

  7. #6@jay: Perhaps Edmonds wasn’t interested in the backup role? As far as adding a reliever, I think now is the perfect time to take a chance on someone in hopes of finding someone who can either help the team and/or be spun off for value somewhere down the line.

  8. 1) I’m glad Edmonds is gone. I’ve been yelling for his head since they aquired him.
    2) Next move I would like to see: Thatcher and Cla Merideth go away.
    3) Bring in a shit hot left hand reliever (that doesn’t throw side arm) and a hot left hand hitter-even if he was a platoon player.
    4) Get rid of PMac-send him to Lake Elsinore.

    Just some of my thoughts and feelings about all of this. But let it be known, I have all the faith in the world in KT given his past record of chess moves. Sometimes he’s had to sacrifice a knight for a pawn. Shit happens and you move on.
    I’ve given up on this season, but not the team or my love of the game.

  9. #6@jay: For the reasons you lay out, I doubt they’d be trading for a rental reliever unless all they gave up was cash or a Myrow-type minor leaguer. On Edmonds, he simply looks finished. Hairston, McAnulty, Gerut, Ambres, they’re all 4th OF types who would seem to give you more.

    #7@Masticore317: Doesn’t matter what Edmonds was interested in. If he didn’t want that role, he could retire and save the team some money. Maybe they’d have come to a settlement. Who knows, maybe they did, nobody’s ever heard about how Todd Walker’s grievance came out and that screams settlement. If Edmonds had stayed on the team, he could complain all he wants. What’s the effect? It’s noise and hurtful to his reputation, but what sort of traction does a 183 hitter have in a clubhouse he’s been a part of for 3 months? I’m still glad they released him rather than giving him a start per week, because he has no future use to the team and doesn’t seem to have anything left in the tank, but the contract works both ways. The Padres have to pay him, but if he wants the check, he has to abide by their decisions.

    #8@Turbine Dude: Yeah, that 120 ERA+ of Meredith’s is just worthless. Ditto for McAnulty, who has been around 100 OPS+ (it’s only average, but it IS average and the 3rd highest production on the squad). Don’t want him playing defense, fine, turn him into a pinch-hitter. Thatcher has good enough stuff that he should only be sent down, not disposed of. Last year’s 21 innings are more in line with his minor league peripherals than this year’s 17.

  10. #8@Turbine Dude: Why in the hell do you want to get rid of Meredith?

  11. #10@Richard: I have a personal thing against side arm pitchers.
    #9@Tom Waits: When I said ‘go away,’ I didn’t mean from the organization. Send ‘em down, but keep them around to be brought up at a later time.

  12. We’ve picked up Brian Corey from Boston for cash or PTBNL. Joe Thatcher has been optioned to Portland.

  13. …and the reliever is Bryan Corey. Wow, how exciting. Not exactly what I was hoping for but at least Thatcher is being sent to AAA to hopefully work on getting back to the pitcher he was last year. Here’s the link.

  14. #12@Geoff Young:


    Meh doesn’t begin to describe my feelings. “Good stuff” is an awfully big box; low 90s fastball, decent changeup, 35 years old. Dick Hayhurst is 8 years younger and putting up very good AAA numbers.

  15. #14 – Hayhurst’s stuff doesn’t impress scouts, FWIW. Corey throws hard and there is the ancillary effect of moving to the weaker league and the much better ballpark.

    Posted this earlier on the wrong thread, so here it is today:

    Just catching up here – haven’t wanted to do much Padres-talking this year (for obvious reasons)
    But debating the merits of Gerut/Ambres/Hairston is a bit silly. They’re all 4th/5th OF types. The padres dug their own grave this year when they let Bradley and Cameron walk without any kind of plan to replace them besides a way over-the-hill Jim Edmonds. The padres, as a small-budget team, have done very well the last few years by doing the little things right – assembling good, cheap bullpens and finding useful bench players.

    This season, however, the team decided to turn its useful bench players into starters, and that’s just not going to work. So it’s time for radical changes. Henn is a good start – a lefty who reaches the mid-90s. The Yankees are always impatient with their prospects, so I wouldn’t read much into that. This guy could be very good – more than just a LOOGY.

    I wouldn’t touch Jacque Jones – he’s stretched as a center-fielder and his power is gone. Remember Jay Payton and Terrmell Sledge? – this is the same guy. We don’t want him. The Padres need a defensive stud out there, and if Felix Pie is really available then he should’ve been a Padre yesterday. I don’t like the idea of giving up Greene, but since the Cubs have three shortstops on their roster already, I assume Towers could finagle one of them (ideally Cedeno) along with Felix. Piniella hates Pie and unless the cubs are going to dump Uncle Lou soon then I don’t think Felix has a spot in Chicago. While we’re at it, let’s grab Matt Murton too – he’s an on-base machine who can handle right field. This turns into a bigger trade at that point, probably involving a starter, but what better place for Greg Maddux to close out his career in the same place he started it, in a pennant race?

    I don’t really like Gerut in center at all, but I do understand that they have to have somebody out there. They won’t let you play with 8 fielders. I am baffled by the sparse playing time for Justin Huber. They got him, his minor league numbers suggest he can hit a little bit, why not see? This season’s over.

    At the trade deadline, I can’t see a lot of value the Pads can deal. Except for, and I know this is blasphemy, dealing Adrian Gonzalez to the yankees. He would be great in that park (and the new one, which supposedly has a similar short porch in right) and the Padres could, legitimately ask for one of Hughes, Kennedy or Austin Jackson along with Kei Igawa, who lots of scouts think could thrive in Petco/the NL. It’s a huge move, to trade your best player before free agency, but it could yield huge results, too, especially if the return ends up being 40% of your starting rotation. It’s something to think about. Do that, and your 2009 Padres look something like this:
    1B – Kouz
    2B – Antonelli
    SS – Ronny Cedeno
    3B- Headley
    LF – Huber
    CF – Pie
    RF – Murton
    SP – Peavy/Young/Wolf/Hughes/Igawa

    That’s a better lineup than we’re sending out now, by far.

    Leave a Reply

  16. #15@David Coonce: Agree with a lot of your analysis – ie- I didn’t know that JJones’ range has declined so much

    But. Justin Huber starting in left field ?

  17. Beaver manager Randy Ready and Chase Headley were ejected in today’s game vs. Iowa

    Turbine Dave : I hope the Padres don’t take your advice and get rid of Meredith. I really like the way he is throwing right now.

  18. #15@David Coonce: Oh =, and No trade of the franchise position player for a pitcher either.

  19. #17@JP: Like I said, it’s a personal thing. I grew up pitching in little league and H.S. and it just gives me the heebie jeebies to watch any side arm pitcher regardless of his numbers.

  20. #19@Turbine Dude: You must have hated Kent Tekulve – his coke bottle glasses alone gave me the heebie jeebies

  21. #18:
    I don’t love getting rid of Gonzalez either, but he’s free talent and the Padres aren’t going to be good for a while, and by that point he’s going to be too expensive to keep. It’s reasonable to not want to trade him for a pitcher, but Austin Jackson isn’t chopped liver, and I think a young, defensive whiz/offensively very good 1B could net a prized prospect plus Igawa, who could be a very good reclamation project with a 4million dollar contract, peanuts in todays market. The Yankees are always in “win now” mode so why not see if they’ll bite? I’d rather give up Gonzalez than Peavy.

  22. #16
    Jones is just bad now. It’s sad, but he has the kind of skills that don’t age well. Huber might be okay in left, and if he’s not he was free talent so who cares, right? He should at least get a shot.

  23. #21@David Coonce: The Padres still have 2 young starting pitchers to build around and some talented arms in the pen along with some good young position players so I am not so sure that they are a long way from being good again. Heck, if they one or two more good offensive players in this lineup, they would be 19-18 now and not 13-24. They are down two starting outfielder’s right now and if Hairston gets his act together and they can patch in a decent stop gap option in center, then they finish above .500 thuis year.

  24. Is today’s game nationally broadcast? I see it on the SD4 schedule but there is no pre-game show.

  25. #15@David Coonce: Corey doesn’t throw any harder than the generic middle reliever, and despite being very old for his minor leagues, he didn’t pile up the strikeouts in situations that were much easier than the NL. Hayhurst had low-90s velocity coming out of college.

    #19@Turbine Dude: Watching a lefty throw used to send shivers up my spine.

    #21@David Coonce: We won 88 games last year with a lot of the same players, and it was a legit 88 wins, no pythagorean shenanigans. How are we doomed to years of mediocrity? Gonzalez is a ways from free agency and seems like the kind of player who might sign a friendly deal, the way Peavy did. The Yankees would probably trade Igawa for a relief pitcher, or Maddux/Wolf, who walk at the end of the year.

    They do need to put some serious thought into where Kouzmanoff fits on this team. There’s no rush, they can let him have the rest of the year, but there’s some chance he’s a platoon player with minimal defensive value, and that’s not the type of player that pushes Headley to LF.

  26. #25
    We won 88 games last year with 3 legitimate outfielders (I’m counting Bradley, who was a beast with the Padres). We now have one. hairston can’t play everyday; he’s a fine 4th outfielder, and even more valuable if he can play 2nd at all. But he swings and misses a lot and doesn’t have real corner OF power.

    The Pads also had outstanding outfield defense last season, especially once Bradley arrived, and Hairston, Gerut, Edmonds, Huber, et. al are all well below average. A team with Wolf and Young has to have a good outfield defense.

    And I say we are doomed to years of mediocrity only b/c there doesn’t seem to be any legit OF prospects in the minors. Picking up a couple during this lost season might help avoid many years of mediocrity.

  27. #26@David Coonce: Bradley was a beast, but he only played 42 games for us. Unless we went 32-10 in those games, he wasn’t everything you’re making him out to be. We acquired him on June 29, when we were in 1st place. Somehow the collection of below-average LF talent we had before then hadn’t doomed us to that point.

    Gerut is not a below-average defensive LF. If he hits, he may be a solution there. His BR comps include Jayson Werth and Ryan Church. I’d take either of those guys in LF.

    We do need a serious upgrade in CF, but that’s one position, and other teams have CF that can be traded. How does that turn into “the Padres aren’t going to be good for a while?”

    Chad Huffman is a legitimate corner OF prospect. Hunter may be. Antonelli could even be pushed to CF with Sogard hitting like he knows what the pitcher is thinking. With several attractive veterans to be traded, the last thing the Padres should consider is trading young affordable talent.

    I love the Igawa idea, btw. But why use Agon to get him when the Yankees may need 1 or more of Maddux, Wolf, or even Iguchi (if Cano stays cold)?

  28. #27
    I care less about getting Igawa than I do about possibly getting Hughes or Kennedy. Both those guys could be all-stars in San Diego.

    As far as CF, the only ones on the market are Crisp, who is too expensive (the Sox want Headley in return) or too risky (Willits, Matthews, Jr., etc.) Pie is probably the best, cheapest option.

    Have you watched Gerut run this year? He may have been an average/above-average LF earlier in his career, but at age 30 and after 2 knee surgeries, he’s pretty darn bad out there, if his minor-league zone ratings mean anything. Petco’s massive outfield demands a very good outfield defensive crew, and having 3 below-average defenders out there right now is killing this team.

    Remember 2007? The Padres lost game number 163, in large part, because Brady Clark was patrolling center field. Defense counts.

  29. #26@David Coonce: I could quote stats of a few guys that Tom listed above, but I’m just curious what David considers a “legit OF prospect”?

  30. #28@David Coonce:

    Kennedy’s a polished college arm with average stuff who could very easily be exposed in the majors. Hughes has that all-star upside, but Kennedy could be just a guy. He flew through the minors in a little more than a season, to his credit, but I could more easily see him becoming a league-average 4th starter than Mike Mussina.

    There are far more CF than that available if you dip into the minors, and the acquisition doesn’t need to be made during the season. If you’re that interested in defense, we could get Jeremy Reed from Seattle. There are too many CF in the high minors and the majors for me to believe we’re locked in a box. If Hunter keeps hitting, you’ll see the scouting reports on his defense in CF get better, too.

    I trust minor league zone ratings very little. Gerut has looked fast the last couple of games, and as I stated, he’s an above-average defensive LF, where the requirements aren’t as stringent. Since he played mostly RF in Portland, with Headley in LF, I don’t know you’d get to “may have been an average/above-average LF earlier in his career, but…he’s pretty darn bad out there, if his minor-league zone ratings mean anything.”

    What I remember about 2007 is we lost a lot more games because we didn’t have starting pitching depth or a second baseman who could hit than we did because of outfield defense. I would love to have 3 above-average defenders in the OF who could all contribute offensively; that’s one reason I’ve been against Headley playing LF for the last 6 months. But there’s no way to support the leap from “We need to improve in the OF” to “We should trade Agon because we can’t improve the OF defense enough to compete.” You’ve said it yourself, we had a very good OF 12 months ago. There’s no insurmountable obstacle to having a very good OF 12 months from now.

  31. #19@Turbine Dude: I dont get why you would let a “personal thing” get in the way of how a reliever has performed. What does pitching in little league have to do with a Major League player that has been successful pitching side arm?
    I get nervous everytime CY pitches because his 88 MPH fastball doesnt move. Sometimes pitchers are effective whether you like them or not.

  32. #30
    I would prefer not trading Gonzalez. I was just throwing out the idea that if SD was serious about getting real prospects he’s the only piece we have, outside of something stupid like trading Peavy. Outfield defense really does matter, especially in San Diego, and I don’t even think it’s arguable that in game 163 last season Brady Clark misplayed the Padres into a lost season. Sure, a better 2B last season and more pitching depth would have made 163 unnecessary, but that was a season-long absence the Padres overcame. The lack of a real center-fielder in 163 was what kept them from the post-season, not Hoffman or the season-long lack of a 2B or anything else. We almost overcame that other stuff; we couldn’t overcome bad OF defense in the most important game of the season. Just my opinion.

    I guess the real problem I have with the Padres this year is that to let Bradley and Cameron walk without any real plan to replace them was irresponsible. Hairston has a 270 OBP and has struck out in a quarter of his at-bats. Edmonds got released for doing that. I don’t see any help ready right now, besides Headley, and the Padres farm system seems bleak on the OF front. When you’re promoting Jody Gerut, a 30 year-old journeyman who hasn’t played in 2 years, it’s probably a pretty good sign you don’t have much down on the farm.

  33. #32@David Coonce:

    2b, the lack of starting pitching, and Hoffman all lost us far more games. Focusing on 163 more than 8 other games that might have been won makes no sense to me.

    They have several pieces to move. Maddux and Wolf are both valuable commodities in a pennant race, as are Giles and Bell. Giles and Maddux may not be easy to move because they have contractual issues, but if the Padres are 10 out in July, Maddux is unlikely to want to stick around.

    I completely agree with the poor CF planning. They are lacking a true CF in the minors (Danny Payne is the best bet now, and he’s played 8 games in Low A) but they have several options for the corners. My hope is that the 2009 Padres have Huffman in LF, a player who is not yet a Padre in CF (Pie), and the last year of OG in RF. After that Cedric Hunter may be ready to take over in RF. Huffman and Hunter are good athletes who offer plus defense in their respective corners, and they’re already in the system. Even if we didn’t have either of them, we have had good OF defense in 2006 and 2007 without any homegrown players. There’s more than one way to acquire talent.