“Pitching-You Better Have It-or Get It”
And you were upset at what you have seen recently from the San Diego Padres pitching staff. A team that started (11-5) and since then is (27-35).
You could be in Baltimore this week, where it is summer-oven hot, Atlantic Ocean humid, and the boys of summer are buried in last place again.
The hometown Orioles, who host the Padres, are (22-56) and light years away from competing for anything but the basement.
Even worse, they are (9-28) at Camden Yards, a brutal team in a beautiful ballpark.
They have a team ERA of (5.85) kind of like Pacific Coast League stats. And at home that pitching staff has a (6.33-ERA). Drive you to drink Falstaff Beer, and lots of it at the yard.
The so-called ace of the staff is Andrew Cashner, yes, that Andrew Cashner, the ex-Padres starter, the one San Diego acquired after they gave up on Anthony Rizzo after about a month in the majors.
We all know how that worked out, Rizzo-home runs, World Series at Wrigley Field. Cashner-here today dealt tomorrow, bouncing around to Texas and other places. He was all of (4-15) last year there. Well at least he is (7-3) in a surprising season.
But the rest of the Orioles staff is a mishmash of struggling high draft picks, led by Dylan Bundy. Failed free agents, like the injured Alex Cobb, and four other kid pitchers they are force feeding, not having anywhere near the seasons the Padres young arms are having.
Manny Machado, who hit 162-home runs in nearly 6-years in Baltimore is now in San Diego.
He gave me an icy reception when I asked him about what was happening to his first ever team that wears Orange jerseys. “Go ask the owners why they did what they did” he told me.
“Where we going with all this questioning”, as if I was probing that he was part of the problem in Baltimore’s demise. Of course he didn’t care to talk about the World Series experience with the Dodgers either.
Manny got his money-that’s all he cares about.
In Baltimore, Brooks Robinson, Frank Robinson, Earl Weaver, Jim Palmer, Cal Ripiken and so many other greats were a long time ago.
It got so bad in the Charm City, that even Buck Showalter, a baseball lifer got out after last year’s (47-115) summer of suffering.
It’s more than just pitching though. Gone too is the rock solid outfielder Adam Jones and 2nd baseman Jon Schoop. Injuries took out SS-JJ Hardy. Machado was traded.
Among the arms cut loose, Zach Britton, now a Yankee, Kevin Glausman, now with the Braves, Brad Brach with the Cubs.
Injuries ended the careers of promising Chris Tillman and Bryan Matusz.
They’re stuck with the anchor around their neck, sub-hitting .200-former home run slugger Chris Davis, still owed another 124M as his body breaks down.
Hated owner Peter Angelos has turned the team over to his sons. They hired a guy with good background, Mike Elias, from the Houston Astros chain to be GM. Some players are in the pipeline, but rebuilding takes years.
And Baltimore hasn’t helped itself by trading away a lot of international signing slot money in deals. Last I checked, Latin America and Cuba is the way to fast forward replenishing your farm system. Here in San Diego, yes, in Baltimore, obviously not.
And add into the equation, this challenge, rebuilding in the AL East, where you play the Yankees-Red Sox and Tamp Bay Rays virtually the entire season. How many games do you think you win in the division while trying to rebuild.
This Orioles franchise could threaten the pain the Houston Astos went thru, losing 115-games over a 3-year span before the Altuve-Springer-Correa-Bregman group surfaced to fix all things wrong in Houston.
So if Padres fans are disappointed with the young struggles of this pitching staff, think of how awful it is in Baltimore. A Birds team that is (67-171) the last season and a half on Chesapeake Bay.
Bad time to be in Baltimore, not just the summer heat and humidity, but Orioles baseball too.