I know, I know. I know. You might not want to believe Chase Headley is the most productive Padres third baseman of all time when Ken Caminiti exists. I know. Hear me out.
Ken Caminiti is the safe pick for the most memorable Padres third baseman of all time. He put together a monster 1996 season, the second greatest Padres season from any position player by fWAR (7.5) while also leading the team to its first divisional victory in 12 years.
You know who ties Caminiti for the second greatest Padre position player season? Current Padre Chase Headley, whose defense and underrated bat boosted his 2012 campaign to 7.5 fWAR to match.
Jake Thompson (0-1, 12.46), making his Major League debut, was hit hard in his four and a third innings, allowing six runs on seven hits and two walks while striking out one. Yangervis Solarte‘s single in the first inning scored Travis Jankowski and a double by Christian Bethancourt drove in Wil Myers and Solarte. In the fifth inning, Myers’ drove in Jankowski with a double and Ryan Schimpf‘s sacrifice fly scored Myers. Solarte’s bases-loaded single in the eighth inning drove in Adam Rosales and Jankowski.
This afternoon’s series finale pits Jarred Cosart (0-1, 5.90) against Jerad Eickhoff (6-12, 3.68). First pitch is scheduled for 1:40pm PDT.
1998? That long ago? Have the Padres really sucked that bad? Well, yes and no. Part of the problem with having the fans vote is players that get national attention tend to get the most votes. And the Padres have rarely gotten national attention since 1998. Not for anything positive, that is.
Not saying that’s necessarily a bad thing, just that’s the way it is.
So, what happened between 1998 and today? How many players have been All-Stars since?
Tony Gwynn had his last really great year at the plate in 1997. Some of the more gaudy numbers he put up include:
Career high for hits in a season (220)
Career high for HR in a season (17)
Career high for RBI in a season (119)
Won his eighth, and final, Silver Bat for the best batting average in the National League (.372)
Career high for doubles in a season (49)
He posted his third best OPS+ and second best wRC+ for a single season
That’s just the stuff you can pull off his baseball card at Baseball Reference or Fangraphs. He did a couple of other things I find amazing, as well.
He walked 55 times that year, but only 12 of those were intentional. That low IBB number didn’t make the top 10 in the NL that season. With Ken Caminiti hitting behind him most of the year, I guess that’s understandable.
He saw only sixteen 0-2 counts all year. But this pitcher’s count was no friend to the hurler in 1997 when Tony Gwynn stepped into the box. He hit .375 when the count was 0-2. He was backed into a 1-2 count 62 times that season, and hit .344 in those situations. For the entire 1997 season, according to Baseball Reference, there was no count in which he didn’t hit at least .300; oddly, the count that gave him the most trouble was 1-1 – he only hit .300 on that next pitch. Mere mortals struggle to hit .300 in a hitters count; Tony just hit.
But by far, my favorite stat from that season is his otherworldly .459/.489/.760 with RISP.
For those of you who weren’t paying attention — which based on the number of entries I received wasn’t as much as I expected — Padres Public managed to get a few copies of MLB Bloopers Deluxe Doubleheader and Prime 9: MLB Heroics DVDs from MLB Productions. So, I decided to have a online scavenger hunt through all of my posts in a series of 19 questions.
(If you find yourself asking “Why 19?” you should stop reading this blog and Google “San Diego Padres #19” right now.)
The winner is Nate, aka @Taterz1021 on Twitter, who correctly answered 18 out of the 19 questions I asked.
Let’s take a look at the questions, followed by the answer I was looking for and the post that it was contained in.
The Padres will finish up their series with the Giants this weekend and then, mercifully, head into the All-Star Break. With any luck they will enter that All-Star Break with a decent taste in their mouth assuming the series against the free-falling Giants goes well. But in either event the Padres could use a break after recently losing 10-games in a row.
However, I’m not here today to dwell on the recent struggles. Today we look back, with the All-Star Game as our guide, and attempt to assemble the Padres All-Time, All-Stars, All-Star Team. Wow, that was a mouthful.
The basic premise is this. Throughout the Padres history they have had at least one player from every position make the All-Star Game. Based on a variety of requirements, some of which are objective some subjective, I’ve assembled what I think is that team.
Ok, the requirements. On the objective side I’m looking at the players overall season that they made the All-Star team. I’m using the entire season though obviously half of those numbers happened after the All-Star Game. In the event of ties (or close calls) I’ll use how that player may have done in the All-Star Game that year. And in one case, I simply picked a player I like more than another, objectivity be damned. So, without further ado, let’s assemble an All-Star team!
The year was 1997. I was working for a company (that shall remain nameless) that was having a big tailgate party fundraiser at one of the Padres/Rockies game at Jack Murphy Stadium. Cheap tickets and free food? I’m so there.
Coincidentally, there was a baseball card show at one of the Mission Valley hotels (Either the Sheraton or the Hilton, not that it matters.) that would be having both Ken Caminiti AND Baseball Hall of Famer Frank Robinson signing autographs. Read More…
If you don’t recall what that episode was about, here’s the summary from IMDB:
Homer and his co-workers qualify the plant’s softball team for the league final, but Mr. Burns hires 9 professional MLB players to win a $1 million bet.
The nine MLB players Mr. Burns gets were Roger Clemens, Mike Scioscia, Don Mattingly, Steve Sax, Ozzie Smith, Wade Boggs, Jose Canseco, Ken Griffey Jr. and Darryl Strawberry, all of whom guest-starred as themselves.
I was born in January of 1969. My stay on this planet coincides perfectly with the San Diego Padres’ unfortunate membership in the National League.
More than even you, I love baseball. Adore it. Breathe it. Read about it, talk about it, dream about it. Occasionally write about it. My obsession with baseball pales, however, in comparison to my devotion to the San Diego Padres. The Padres and I are proverbial conjoined twins. We cannot be separated without ensuring the demise of the less viable twin. Doctors have yet to determine which of us is the weaker, so I root on… Read More…
This is where we gather from time to time to talk about something big in the Padres world or just the Padres or just baseball. It’s a roundtable discussion. Except, you know, no round tables. This is a Public House…so we’re at the bar.
*All opinions are of those who are attributed to them. No opinion here should be construed to be that of the collective.
Padres Trail wrote an excellent post a couple of weeks ago regarding the most seminal Padres moment. His choice, a fine one, was Game 3 of the 1996 NLDS. If you haven’t read his post already, go check it out here.
This topic got a lot of us thinking “what are our seminal Padres moments?” It’s a somewhat complicated topic for a team with 0 World Series titles and only 2 appearances. But seminal doesn’t necessarily mean “great.” They are moments, for better or worse, that stay with you. An easy way to test what moments these would be for you? They are the first moments that come to mind when you think “Padres.”
Here, we’ve limited ourselves to picking 3 moments in total. Some good, some bad, all memorable.
So, presented for this week’s roundtable discussion, The Bar presents “Seminal Padres Moments.”