Hello Padres Public.
I’m Billy, and I recently contacted Bryant about joining up with him on Woe Doctor. Bryant and I have spent many hours discussing all things Padres over the years, and I think we could make good teammates for the Woe Doctor site. He responded favorably to me joining and thus my blogging career hopefully will just take off. I feel I’ll fit nicely into the Woe Doctor Blogosphere as I do keep an eye on minor league happenings and typically catch a few Mission games each summer. I’m also an avid beer enthusiast, as both a home brewer for the past 14 years, and a somewhat legendary consumer. Let me put it this way, I single handedly kept Bud Ale afloat for 6 months. Wait, what?
I also did a guest appearance last spring with the Vocal Minority, and that should give you an indication that I don’t take myself too seriously, and plan to be the same here. Sure, I love FanGraphs, but I’m no Davey Downer. I follow more along the lines that thinks there is a tremendous amount of information out there about this great game of baseball, and coming up with new ways to interpret the data can be beneficial to the fan as well as to baseball’s management. But I also like the eyeball test, as sometimes you just have to see what all the data is trying to tell you. I’m not a professionally trained scout, but my biceps are HUGE!
I see the Padres called up their best pitching prospect they have in Colin Rea. It was fun to watch his debut and to see him get a win, a hit and score his first run all in his debut if front of about 70 friends and family. That’s the good stuff in baseball stories right there. I think it’s time they call up Travis Jankowski too. He should be the everyday center fielder next season, so they might as well let him work the rest of this season there to get a head start. As to the rest of the minors, well Hunter Renfroe is finally above league average, so yay. The minors are pretty barren of talent, except maybe Ruddy Giron. That guy is going to be a star. *checks FanGraphs* Well, maybe. Whatever.
As for observations for what is going on with our beloved Padres, well everybody needs to get on board with Operation Stand Pat. Because protected picks are valuable and the sole intention of keeping the band together was for the picks, man. It’s genius in its simplicity, and allows guys like DJ Wayne to continue to promote this awesome assembly of names to a name hungry fan base. Actually, I am going to enjoy having Justin Upton around to the fall, because I have a feeling that power stoke is going to warm up during the latter half of the season, and this could be fun to watch. It’s not often you get to watch a ball player make Petco seem small.
The apparent truth to this season is it is only a stepping stone to next season. AJ Preller could only rock so hard this last off season. He’s got some serious rocking to do this winter. It would be nice to see him creatively come up with an offer to keep JUpton around, though back loading contracts are difficult and often an albatross in their last few years. For example, take James Shields. No, really, somebody take him. Oh sure, his K% is up, but look at his BB%. And look at his xFIP. He is a walking regression machine. I mean I kind of dig having an Eric Show throwback ace, but I think even old Birch Boy could have kept the ball in the park at Petco a little bit. James might need regular adjustments on his neck from all the violent head snaps he makes following the trajectory off the cookies he’s serving.
Okay, I might have been a bit hyperbolic there, and James peripheral numbers look good enough that he could be a solid middle of the rotation guy, even if he is being paid to be closer to the top. Hopefully Tyson Ross, Shields, Andrew Cashner and maybe Rea with a bit of this year under his belt mean Preller can turn his attention to the infield.
What to do with that infield, though. I’m fairly certain Wil Myers will return to be the everyday first baseman. I suspect Yonder Alonso and his 88 mph “line drives” will be traded away for anything resembling a middle infielder of promise. Not major league ready, but maybe better than top 30 prospect Taylor Lindsey. I’m fairly sure Taylor’s mom is hot. It’s the only way I can figure he stays ranked. My biggest wish is Preller finally ends the nightmare that is Alexi Amarista at shortstop.
I’ve hated on Lil’ Lexi so hard for so long that I think I am out of hate. How this team can give him 400 PA per year for going on three seasons now is completely unfathomable. And yet, here we are. Yeah well here sucks, and I can only keep the faith that Preller will end my long nightmare and cast off a player that most likely will not make the roster of any other team once he is released. Okay, maybe I still have a little hate pent up. I’m working through it.
As creative as Preller was in assembling an outfield last year, I want to see him be even more creative with 3rd, short, and even 2nd if he feels the need this year. Full disclosure, I do admit to being a fan of Jedd Gyorko. And no, his contract is not expensive next season. He’ll barely cost half a win (open market) and has the power stroke not often found for the position. I’d like to see the Padres ride it out with him, but if he can be flipped into other valuable pieces, so be it. I think the more valuable trade piece is Cory Spangenberg. Someone will like his speed, but I think the Padres are a bit full at the super utility position.
That is my opener. I plan to be writing fairly regularly for the rest of this season and may help Dustin with the heavy lifting in the off-season. What a gift to Padres public he has been. Really, all the guys here are great, and I hope I am worthy of the adding to their excellence. I should have plenty of time to write as I have decided to become a football monk. I’ll spend my time I could have been watching football making beer. And I vow to never jump in bed with any other team.
You can find me on twitter @LybargerBrewery, or maybe at an Astros game, if any of you make it out to my home away from home of Houston.