“Random Thoughts–Teams in Town”
Here, there, everywhere…thoughts about anything-evderything.
PADRES…..Head out on a 9-game road trip that takes them to face teams with big time batting orders. The Friars pitching staff is not now where they were the first 3-weeks of the season. And now they have to face Nolan Arenado in Colorado…Mike Trout-Anthony Rendon in Anaheim…and a wide variety of home run hitters in Oakland.
EL NINO-LA SALSA….May be hard to believe that a 21-year old has made the so-called superstar on the team become a better player. How do you explain the impact ‘El Nino’, Fernando Tatis, has had on ‘LaSalsa’, Manny Machado. Positioned next to each other in the batting order, grabbing everything on the left side of the infield like a vacuum cleaner, Tatis has arrived as a star, and Machado is finally earning this 30M a year contract.
SHERIFF STRUGGLING…Chris Paddack is going thru a bit of a bumpy ride this second year. Do not call it a sophomore slump, but rather scouting reports. Teams have figured out some of Paddack’s repertoire and his early inning woes may be teams have stopped chasing some of his pitchers because location of his top three pitches have become inconsistent.
BULLPEN BRIGADE….It’s springing leaks because of injuies and over-use. Kirby Yates had two bone chips removed from his elbow. Drew Pomeranz has some shoulder issues and durability again becomes a question. Matt Strahm has been superb, but again, how often you can go to him. Craig Stammen is not what he was the last two years. Do they have anyone else trustworthy they can rely on? Only time tells.
TRADE DEADLINE…Monday is the trading deadline day, but it has to be debated whether AJ Preller should give up any assets to rent another pitcher. He can bring back Joey Luchessi or even promote highly regarded Macknenzie Gore. He could move catcher Austin Hedges, but he then risks impaling his defense behind home plate.
SWISS ARMY KNIFE….Rookie of the year candidate Jake Cronenworth can plays all over the infield and some in the outfield. A (.340) batting average thru 30-games, is pretty impressive. We see if this carries to the finish line. But he has made a difference.
LIGHTWEIGHTS….Jurickson Profar, Jorge Mateo, Francisco Mejia, not much offense there. But with only 30-games or so left in the schedule before the playoffs, maybe this team can get thru the rest of the season with little output from its bench.
PLAYOFF BUBBLE….No one is talking much about what is happening in the postseason, but there are internal discussions of playoff bubbles in October. One idea is Los Angeles and San Diego to host the 8-team American League playoffs. The National League postseason would be split between the Texas Rangers new stadium and Minute Maid Park in Houston.