While the Padres were beating the Rockies in extra innings on Saturday night, I watched the Lake Elsinore Storm lose at home to the High Desert Mavericks. I ended up chatting with a friend I hadn’t seen in years and so didn’t pay as close attention to the action as I ordinarily would, which is fine because I see baseball games far more often than I see this friend.
That said, I can share a few observations… and a fun little tidbit:
- This team has some fireplugs. Cody Decker is listed at 5’11″, 220 lbs.; Daniel Robertson at 5’8″, 185 lbs.
- Decker showed nice opposite field power, knocking a double off the fence in right-center in the seventh.
- Robertson made a terrific sliding catch in left field; former first-round pick Danny Payne did the same in right field.
- Starting pitcher Chris Fetter struggled with his command from the beginning. He made Mavericks first baseman Rich Poythress look bad chasing a breaking ball in the first, but otherwise didn’t impress.
- Ben at Friar Forecast expressed concerns about Drew Cumberland’s ability to play shortstop. I understand why. He committed three errors on Saturday, including two on throws. He also struck out twice and grounded into a double play in four trips to the plate. Tough day in the Cal League.
Also, the current Storm gameday program includes an interview with Padres Director of Minor League Operations Mike Wickham. He talks about a number of things, but the most interesting to me involves the evaluation of player performance:
We look at all stats and analyze everything. A player’s age for the league also comes into play. A typical Cal Leaguer is 20 or 21 years old. We also look at DIPS because a pitcher might have great stuff but their performance might not reflect that talent. We also analyze league trends and park factors (i.e., Elsinore is a pitcher’s park). On-base percentage is huge for us as an organization. The more players get on base, the better chance we have to score runs.
I don’t know about you, but that just made me feel all warm and fuzzy… which is good because it was freezing out at The Diamond on Saturday.