‘NL WEST-TRUTH VS FICTION’
Life is about to go on in the National League West.
The Padres have begun their new managerial search.
The Giants have their new manager
The Arizona Diamondbacks are headed to the World Series
The Dodgers have significant pitching problems
So depending who you listen to and who you believe, there’s some truth and some fiction out there.
PADRES…AJ Preller’s press conference was full of direct-hard hitting questions and lots of philosophical answers. Preller denied again all the evidence out there about constant friction with since departed manager Bob Melvin. Who knows what is true,mnot true, or changed over a 24-months span, where the Padres had two winning seasons, one exciting pennant race into post season and a summer of struggles.
Preller says he will interview a number of candidates, starting with the former manager of the Cardinals, a bench coach, and the manager in Miami. I am enthralled with Skip Schumacher, who evidently wants out of Miami, a year after he was hired, because owner Bruce Sherman cut loose GM-Kim Ng, who had helped guide the team into the playoffs.
Mike Schildt learned alot from his ouster in St Louis where he drove that team hard. Maybe that’s what’s needed in the Padres clubhouse, a change in the handling of the independent contractor roster Preller put together.
Tell me Ryan Flaherty would not become AJ Preller’s yes man or Manny Machado’s bobo.
Preller remains adamant that he is open to ‘ideas’ on how to run the front office but the feeling is you can offer ideas, but you better do what he wants, or you get moved out.
I give him credit, he took alot of tough questions at his Zoom call. I just don’t believe everything that came out of his mouth about rules, relationships etc. At the end of the day, a respected manager with a good track record, left, and left behind is a GM who is almost 100-games under .500 over 9-years despite being given every resource to build a World Series team.
GIANTS..Bob Melvin got a 3-year deal to go home to San Francisco. He didn’t want to talk much about San Diego except for use of the phrase ‘narrative’ multiple times. That he did not want to work for the Padres in 2024-because the narrative would not change. Who knows if he was referencing Preller’s hands on approach to running the team-clubhouse-dugout, or the storylines the players don’t listen to the manager or the manager was limited in how to control his players. He’s gone. San Francisco’s gain. Waiting to see what new direction San Diego’s new manager takes an underachieving team.
DODGERS..So the big question, how much money are they willing to spend to fix what destroyed their playoff hopes this year. Beneath the luxury tax, will they offer Shohei Ohtani a 50M a year deal to become their DH next year with the hope he can be a star pitcher in 2025? How much money will they have left to go get another veteran arm, like Blake Snell, or Jared Montgomery or one of the other top free agent pitchers out there on the market.
Yes they have the kiddie korps group of Bobby Miller, Emmett Sheehan, Ryan Pepiot and a host of other young pitchers. No one knows what Walker Beuhler and Dustin May will be like, coming off surgeries and how quickly Tony Gonsolin recovers from his knee issues.
ARIZONA…Who saw this coming, the Diamondbacks going from 102-losses two years ago, to the Fall Classic on Friday. They did it by developing volumes of players from within, and it is impressive. Texas went from 110-losses two summers back, spent 513M-in free agent contracts to get to the Series, with a cross section of players who came from lots of places.
It will be fun, but who can predict what happens starting this weekend, considering what happened to the Phillies-Astros-Braves-Dodgers, and the ones that did not make it, the Padres, Mets-Yankees-Orioles-Brewers etc.
“Truth-vs-Fiction, some of that scattered everywhere around the NL West basepaths right now. The Postseason continues (World Series)..the Off season is beginning (Trades-Hirings-Firings)