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On Local Kids and Calculated Gambles

With the Padres now playing in a part of the country where games are over by the time I get home from the day job, I can’t offer much in the way of meaningful commentary beyond maybe you want to fire up the offense before the seventh inning. Instead, I’ll just make a couple of general observations… Continue reading ›

Tuesday Links (10 May 11)

Seems I’ve fallen behind in my links. Some of these are a little old and might taste funny, but they won’t make you sick or anything… Continue reading ›

Me, Elsewhere: On the Bright Side, At Least Tejada Is No Longer Our Problem

My latest at Baseball Prospectus ($) touches on the Padres’ struggles at Petco Park (I’m working on a follow-up to yesterday’s piece), as well as Andre Ethier’s recent 30-game hitting streak, Kelly Johnson’s early season struggles in Arizona, and the efficiency of Rockies pitchers… Oh yeah, and a certain ex-Padre who has been even worse (and more expensive) than our very own Brad Hawpe:

Player         PA   BA  OBP  SLG OPS+ $M
Miguel Tejada 126 .195 .230 .263  36   6.5
Brad Hawpe     97 .180 .237 .281  49   4 3

Huzzah!

Home, Bittersweet Home

The Padres are playing poorly at home. This is nothing new.

A few weeks ago, a fellow writer asked me about the phenomenon and so I ran numbers. Here are home/away winning percentages for the Padres and for MLB as a whole in each of the seasons since they moved downtown to Petco Park:

     |           Padres                    |               MLB
     |     Home     |     Away     |       |      Home      |      Away      |
Year |   W   L  Pct |   W   L  Pct |  Dif* |   W    L   Pct |   W    L   Pct |  Dif*
-----+--------------+--------------+-------+----------------+----------------+------
2004 |  42  39 .519 |  45  36 .556 | -.037 | 1299 1129 .535 | 1129 1299 .465 | +.070
2005 |  46  35 .568 |  36  45 .444 | +.123 | 1306 1124 .537 | 1124 1306 .463 | +.075
2006 |  43  38 .531 |  45  36 .556 | -.025 | 1327 1102 .546 | 1102 1327 .454 | +.093
2007 |  47  34 .580 |  42  40 .512 | +.068 | 1318 1113 .542 | 1113 1318 .458 | +.084
2008 |  35  46 .432 |  28  53 .346 | +.086 | 1351 1077 .556 | 1077 1351 .444 | +.113
2009 |  42  39 .519 |  33  48 .407 | +.111 | 1333 1097 .549 | 1097 1333 .451 | +.097
2010 |  45  36 .556 |  45  36 .556 |  .000 | 1358 1072 .559 | 1072 1358 .441 | +.118
2011 |   7  14 .333 |   7   6 .538 | -.205 |  264  244 .520 |  244  264 .480 | +.039
-----+--------------+--------------+-------+----------------+----------------+------
Tot  | 307 281 .522 | 281 300 .484 | +.038 | 9556 7958 .546 | 7958 9556 .454 | +.093

*Contains rounding errors

I’ve heard a few theories on what might be causing this and a few more on how to fix it, but none seems terribly satisfying. It would be nice, seeing as how they play half their games there, for the Padres to take better advantage of Petco Park.

James and the Double Decker Bus

When last we checked in on the San Antonio Missions, they were destroying the Texas League. Nothing much has changed since then except the particulars. As a reminder, I’m pretty much going by what I hear on the radio. My notes are a mess, so proceed with caution… Continue reading ›

“Still Kicking” Isn’t Just a Metaphor, It’s Also Annoying

The pizza is warm, the beer is cold, and the kids behind you are kicking the back of your seat. Their parents have forgotten to teach them how to behave in public. Mat Latos has forgotten how to throw strikes and walks Andrew McCutchen to lead off the game.

Xavier Paul, who didn’t hit enough for a Dodgers team that is desperate for hitters, pops a sacrifice attempt toward third base. Jorge Cantu moves in, dives for the ball, and has it clank off his glove for a single.

Kick… kick… kick… Continue reading ›

Me, Elsewhere: Looking Back at April

My latest at Baseball Prospectus ($) examines the differences between the first month of this season and last in the NL West. For example, take Brad Hawpe, please:

Year PA   BA  OBP  SLG BB SO
2010 50 .357 .460 .714  8  8
2011 72 .149 .194 .194  4 23

Also, here’s something I threw in about Mike Adams:

  G  AB  R  H 2B 3B HR BB  SO   BA  OBP  SLG
120 413 24 65  6  3  4 31 130 .157 .216 .215
 96 296 12 53  6  1  1 15  59 .179 .218 .216

The top line represents what Adams did to big-league hitters from the beginning of 2009 through April 2011. The bottom is what Phillies catcher Mike Ryan did in 1968. Ryan is the last of three men in MLB history to have an OBP and SLG below .220 in at least 300 plate appearances…

Retrosnort: In the Merry Merry Month of May

Inspired by the Padres’ 7-0 victory over the Dodgers at Chavez Ravine on Sunday, reader LynchMob offers the following suggestion:

Hey, GY, dust off some of the “May” stories from a couple of years ago when the Padres were unbeatable in May … let’s do that again!

To refresh your memory, the Padres owned the month of May from 2005 to 2007:

Year  W-L   Pct
2005 22-6  .786
2006 19-10 .655
2007 18-9  .667
Tot  59-25 .702

Those were good times. Let’s see what we said back then… Continue reading ›

Friday Links (29 Apr 11)

Two quick notes about comments:

  1. I love the discussion that’s happening every day and I’m especially glad to see so many new names in there this year.
  2. Time constraints make it difficult for me to jump in as often as I’d like, but I do read everything and get inspired by what you have to say.

Anyway, just thought you should know. Let’s link… Continue reading ›

Building Self-Esteem through Steadfast Denial

The Padres have been shut out seven times in their first 25 games of 2011. This exceeds their total for the entire seasons of 1990 (six), 1995 (six), and 2004 (three). It also, according to the Elias Sports Bureau, marks a new MLB record for times being shut out in April.

Your San Diego Padres. Overachievers. Continue reading ›