The Padres had a day off after playing 20 games in 20 days in 4 cities and 3 time zones. It was a stretch that ended with a 10-game road trip that the Friars managed to get 4 wins out of. Could have been better.

Padres off-days have an unexpected side effect, however. And yesterday was pretty bad. Or good, depending on how you look at it.

Some of the fans get a little crazy with no baseball to distract them.

Even high-profile Padres fans were not immune to the off-day insanity. Major Garrett, the CBS White House correspondent, went on a Twitter rant to end all Twitter rants about his hometown team.*

*On a personal note, I’d like to welcome one of my newest followers on Twitter, Major Garrett.

Some even called for people to lose their coaching jobs. Specifically, Padres’ hitting coaches Phil Plantier and Alonzo Powell.

So let’s look at the Padres batting stats so far this season and see if a firing is deserved:

Tm R/G G R H HR RBI SO BA OPS TB LOB
SDP 2.66 29 77 206 15 70 238 .217 .596 310 178
LgAvg 4.02 28 113 239 26 108 232 .247 .699 374 198
4.02 423 1702 3580 387 1616 3475 .247 .699 5606 2969
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Original Table
Generated 5/2/2014.

Pretty bad, right? But that’s a really small sample size. Let’s see how the last couple of full seasons have gone for Phil and Alonzo.

2013

Tm R/G R H HR RBI SO BA OPS TB LOB
SDP 3.81 618 1349 146 578 1309 .245 .686 2085 1126
LgAvg 4.00 649 1385 144 616 1225 .251 .703 2142 1121
4.00 9730 20768 2157 9243 18374 .251 .703 32126 16814
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Original Table
Generated 5/2/2014.

Pretty close to the league average all around, but bad. What about 2012?

2012

Tm R/G R H HR RBI BB SO BA OPS TB LOB
SDP 4.02 651 1339 121 610 539 1238 .247 .699 2060 1146
LgAvg 4.22 683 1393 152 648 488 1238 .254 .718 2197 1118
4.22 10929 22283 2434 10370 7813 19808 .254 .718 35154 17881
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Original Table
Generated 5/2/2014.

Close to the league average again, but still pretty bad. What about the guy Plantier and Powell replaced? How bad were the Padres hitters under Randy Ready?

Randy Ready

2011

Tm R/G R H HR RBI BB SO BA OPS TB LOB
SDP 3.66 593 1284 91 563 501 1320 .237 .653 1888 1103
LgAvg 4.13 668 1391 143 635 502 1181 .253 .710 2155 1144
4.13 10691 22263 2281 10159 8032 18900 .253 .710 34474 18306
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Original Table
Generated 5/2/2014.

Ouch! No wonder the guy got fired! How bad was the prior year?

2010

Tm R/G R H HR RBI SO BA OPS TB LOB
SDP 4.10 665 1338 132 630 1183 .246 .689 2018 1125
LgAvg 4.33 701 1401 150 668 1193 .255 .723 2194 1144
4.33 11211 22423 2404 10688 19092 .255 .723 35101 18305
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Original Table
Generated 5/2/2014.

Wait a minute…

Jim Lefebvre/Randy Ready

2009

Tm R/G R H HR RBI BB SO BA OPS TB LOB
SDP 3.94 638 1315 141 605 586 1182 .242 .701 2065 1168
LgAvg 4.43 718 1421 155 683 558 1143 .259 .739 2245 1170
4.43 11481 22741 2482 10927 8926 18282 .259 .739 35915 18726
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Original Table
Generated 5/2/2014.

I’m starting to see a trend.

Wally Joyner

2008

Tm R/G R H HR RBI BB SO BA OPS TB LOB
SDP 3.93 637 1390 154 615 518 1259 .250 .707 2170 1181
LgAvg 4.54 734 1442 163 700 551 1128 .260 .744 2286 1174
4.54 11741 23071 2608 11203 8816 18050 .260 .744 36580 18782
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Original Table
Generated 5/2/2014.

Can it be that simple?

Merv Rettenmund/Wally Joyner

2007

Tm R/G R H HR RBI BB SO BA OPS TB LOB
SDP 4.55 741 1408 171 704 557 1229 .251 .732 2305 1152
LgAvg 4.71 763 1487 169 729 536 1091 .266 .757 2364 1177
4.71 12208 23796 2705 11664 8576 17449 .266 .757 37819 18829
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Original Table
Generated 5/2/2014.

Yup. Definitely seeing a trend here.

Dave Magadan/Merv Rettenmund

2006

Tm R/G R H HR RBI SO BA OPS TB LOB
SDP 4.51 731 1465 161 698 1104 .263 .749 2322 1188
LgAvg 4.76 771 1469 178 734 1089 .265 .761 2374 1161
4.76 12337 23501 2840 11748 17426 .265 .761 37977 18568
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Original Table
Generated 5/2/2014.

Do you see it yet?

Dave Magadan

2005

Tm R/G R H HR RBI SO BA OPS TB LOB
SDP 4.22 684 1416 130 655 977 .257 .724 2153 1220
LgAvg 4.45 721 1441 161 686 1055 .262 .744 2281 1163
4.45 11535 23058 2580 10982 16880 .262 .744 36488 18607
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Original Table
Generated 5/2/2014.

Did you spot the trend? Want help? Okay.

It’s probably not the coaches. Firing Phil Plantier and/or Alonzo Powell in the middle of the season won’t do much, if anything.

It’s the players. Fire them.

What? They can’t fire the players? Son of a b–

*****

I write something for Padres Public just about every week and usually on Wednesday morning. Since you’re likely already following me on Twitter, tell your friends, family, and well-wishers to follow me.

You are encouraged to comment using an exisitng Twitter, Facebook, or Google account. Upvote comments you find helpful, and only downvote comments that do not belong. The downvote is not a 'disagree' button.

  • Lonnie Brownell

    As long as we’re being all statistical, we haven’t actually tried NO coaches. So, fire the coaches and don’t hire anybody. For science.

    But on a slightly more serious note, using OPS as a handy single-number proxy for overall batting performance and skipping this year’s sss numbers, the results Plantier and Powell (law firm?) have gotten in their two seasons are better, as far as deviation from league average, than any of the others shown, except the Rettenmund/Magadan’s 2006 (two coaches…although, not at the same time).

    Hrm.

    I think it was @rjsfro who tweeted that maybe we should hire two more hitting coaches. Maybe so. And if that works, keep hiring them in pairs until we find the plateau. Now that’s some science.

    • Hire two more hitting coaches. And then when the numbers don’t improve, hire two more, And then two more. And two more. And two m–

  • USMC53

    In 2013, if you just look at OPS, we were 25th out of 30 teams. That’s pretty bad, but it doesn’t account for the Petco effect.
    If you look at wRC+, which is designed to account for ballpark factors, we were 17th out of 30. Right in the middle of the pack, and within 4 points of the Pirates, Rangers, Reds, and Nationals.
    Not terrible.

  • I’m hesitant to call for the firing of anybody because Phil Plantier and Alonso Powell know way more about hitting than I ever will. And more importantly I’m not behind the scenes to see how they instruct the players. I also don’t see how they go about deconstructing video to see where Gyorko and Venable have gone wrong this year. How do these guys go about transmitting a message to players who are struggling? Are they good at it but the players are just poor at implementing the strategies? I have no idea.

    April is always a lower month in terms of offensive production for the Padres. They’ve played a lot of games in West Coast marine layer as well as against solid pitching staffs in Milwaukee, Detroit, and Washington. But it’s May now and it’s hot as fuck – time to start hitting.

    Also get better hitters. It’s a team of fourth outfielders.

    Complain away, Friends.