Saturday, March 29, 2008

Edmonds will start the season on the DL



The Padres finally pulled the trigger on a decision that places Jim Edmonds on the DL to start the season. This really didn't come as a shock to anyone following the situation, especially considering the rest of the OFer's involved, and the contractual situations surrounding a few of them.

This move cleared the way for the 25man roster to finally be set, and it looks like this.....

Pitcher include Jake Peavy, Chris Young, Greg Maddux, Randy Wolf, Justin Germano, Joe Thatcher, Cla Meredith, Wil Ledezma, Heath Bell, Trevor Hoffman, Glendon Rusch and Enrique Gonzalez.

Position players include catchers Josh Bard and Michael Barrett, infielders Callix Crabbe, Adrian Gonzalez, Tony Clark, Tadahito Iguchi, Khalil Greene, Kevin Kouzmanoff and outfielders Brian Giles, Scott Hairston, Paul McAnulty, Justin Huber and Jody Gerut.


Bud Black told a local radio station, when interviewed yesterday, that he is leaning towards starting Paul McAnulty in LF on opening day vs. Roy Oswalt. I'd say this is PMac's final chance to show this organization what his value is, either as a 4th-5th OFer or not. If he doesn't stick in the next 5 days, while Edmonds is on the DL, it's not likely he's apart of this organization come day 6.


Good luck PMac.....

GO PADS !!!

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Prior takes a major step forward


11 months after Prior had surgery on his shoulder to repair years worth of damage he finally stepped back on the hill vs. live hitters. It was only minor leaguers, and it was only 25 pitches, plus about 40 in the bullpen warming up, but it was a HUGE step in the right direction.

Prior said he felt great, that it was a little strange, but more strange that there was a batter standing there than anything else. Now it's time to slowly build up that arms strength, and hopefully it will be all systems GO !

"The main goal was to get on the mound, face some hitters and get out OK," Prior said. "It's funny. That's the goal, and you get three or four pitches in and start getting upset at yourself for missing spots, missing your location and stuff like that.

"Overall, the fact that I'm even at where I am right now, I'm happy. I've got a long way to go and a lot of work, but it's just another little milestone you can check off and keep going forward."


Lets hope this is the first of many small but steadily forward steps he can make in his road to a full recovery.

2008 Payroll and Roster to this point

Thanks to someone that does the hard part and who was nice enough to give me permission, here is the 2008 roster and payroll as of March 27th.......I highlighted in RED the total possible payroll if all incentives are hit......and it looks to me like the Padres should be somewhere inbetween 70-80m when all is said and done this next year. This if we don't add/subtract anyone from this list of course.......so consider this subject to change and/or editing.


25-Man Roster

1B Adrian Gonzales $0.750m
2B Tadahito Iguchi $3.85m
SS Khalil Greene $4.5m
3B Kevin Kouzmanoff $0.380m
C Josh Bard $2.2375m
RF Brian Giles $9.0m
CF Scott Hairston $0.380m
LF Jody Gerut $.380m

SP Jake Peavy $6.5m
SP Chris Young $2.5m
SP Greg Maddux $10.0m
SP Randy Wolf $4.75m
SP Justin Germano $0.380m

RP Trevor Hoffman $7.5m
RP Heath Bell $0.380m
RP Cla Meredith $0.380m
RP Joe Thatcher $0.380m
RP Enrique Gonzalez $0.380m
RP Glendon Rusch $0.850m
RP Wil Ledezma $0.620m

BENCH Michael Barrett $3.5m
BENCH Tony Clark $0.900m
BENCH Paul MacAnulty $0.380m
BENCH Justin Huber $0.390m
BENCH Callix Crabbe $0.380m

DL Jim Edmonds $6.0m
DL Mark Prior $1.0m

Incentives/Perks (not added to opening payroll)

Peavy $25k for All-Star appearance
Maddux $50k for All-Star appearance
Maddux $50k for Gold Glove
Maddux Suite accommodations on the road
Maddux Del Mar CC Membership
Hoffman $50k for All-Star appearance
Wolf $4.25m in Incentives
Iguchi $0.65m in Incentives
Barrett $0.75m in Incentives
Prior $4.5m in Incentives
Greene $0.5m in '09 for '08 Plate Appearances
Clark $0.55m for Plate Appearances
Ledezma $0.03m for Performance
Bard $0.225m for 112 Games Started

Total Possible Incentives = $11.08m

Dead Money (Buyouts/Deferred Salary)
BUYOUT Marcus Giles $0.500m
BUYOUT Rob Mackowiak $0.300m

-----------------------------------------

Total Payroll (without incentives) = $69.448m
Total possible payroll with incentives would be $80.528m

Available Funds
$75.0m Payroll = $5.552m Left to Spend
$70.0m Payroll = $0.552m Left to Spend

-----------------------------------------

Sources
http://www.rotoworld.com/conte...&majteam=SD
http://mlbcontracts.blogspot.c....go-padres.html

Play Ball !!!

Germano named #5 starters for 2008 season

Well it looks like the voters of the poll knew what they were talking about on this one. Justin Germano was named the #5 starter going into the 2008 season. This likely means that Glendon Rusch is headed to the bullpen to assume long relief duties. Corey Brock breaks it down for us and has quotes from both Germano and Black on the subject.
Germano named Padres' fifth starter
Right-hander's
changeup the key to his spring success
By Corey Brock / MLB.com
"I thought he pitched very well this spring, he answered the
challenge of competing with a few other guys who were vying for that spot,"
Padres manager Black said. "We thought that some of the improvements he made in
his game showed and hopefully that they carry over to the regular season."
"It's weird, because I didn't really do anything different
with it," Germano said of his changeup. "It was kind of locked in. It turned out
to be a pretty big pitch for me this spring. It helped guys stay off my fastball
and, at times, made my fastball look a little harder. I think it's going to be a
big pitch for me in the long run."
My take on this is that he'll hold down the spot for roughly 2 months until Mark Prior is deemed ready to go, at that point its anyone's guess as to what happens to these guys. Germano has no options left, so it's either big league club or trade it seems.

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Edmonds PLAYS ball !!

Edmonds is still a question mark to play Opening Day, but today he took a major step forward in working on making that a reality. The OF of the Padres is still up in the air, and it seems to be directly revolving around the CF position now. The Padres roster is down to 26 players and it seems that it will be 25 if/when he's ok'd to start.

Edmonds, out since March 6 with a strained right calf, played in a Minor League game on Wednesday and had three hits, including a home run. The Padres have until Sunday night to decide if Edmonds will open the season on the field or the disabled list.
I think PMac's future in a Padres jersey hinges on what happens with Edmonds over the next 24 hours.

Padres trade for an OFer today

Justin Huber-OF- Padres
Mar. 26 - 4:42 pm et
Padres acquired outfielder Justin Huber from the Royals for a player to be named. We thought the Royals might be trying to hide Huber, but if that was the case, it didn't work out. The Padres opted to trade for him rather than take the chance that he wouldn't make it to them on waivers. He'll have a roster spot initially with Jim Edmonds likely to go on the DL. After that, the Padres will probably have to choose between him and Paul McAnulty. The odds are against him having fantasy value right off, but he's a talented hitter worthy of a long look.
Related: Paul McAnulty, Royals

Guess we now have our answer to the OF scenario don't we.

Edmonds to playball ?

Jim Edmonds said Monday that he felt good, and had no doubt that he'd be ready for opening day 2008, but many were still skeptical. Well today we get to find out as it seems that he'll be playing in a minor league game today testing that injured calf.

HOLD YOUR BREATH EVERYONE !!!

PEORIA, Ariz. -- Don't pencil Padres center fielder Jim Edmonds out of the Opening Day lineup just yet.

Edmonds said on Wednesday morning that he plans to test his strained right calf in Minor League games between now and the regular-season opener at PETCO Park on March 31 against the Astros.

"It's getting better. I've been running and doing everything," Edmonds said. "I know I'm going to try and get in as many [Minor League] games as I can in the next five days and get as many at-bats as I can."

Well this would bode well for our OF situation for sure if he's deemed healthy for opening day. I would love to look back and think that we all overreacted to this injury early on, after he's played in his 130th game this year.

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Estes Demoted to Portland

More cuts and demotions are coming, but today was Shawn Estes's turn to bite the bullet. With the hot competition for the #5 role the odd man out so far is the aging veteran.
MLB.com is reporting the move has been made and more are to come soon. Bud Black said the announcement of the #5 role could be as soon as tomorrow.

On the pitching side, Estes, who came to camp a candidate to win the fifth-starter spot, will open the season in Portland after going 1-3 with a 12.27 ERA in 11 innings.

"We'd like him to go to Portland and be part of that rotation and continue to get his work to get back into Major League ready form," Black said. "He's pitched roughly 30 innings in two years. He just has to get back into the whole rhythm of being a starting pitcher, get a feel for all of his pitches, getting back into the tempo and flow of a game."


There are four pitchers vying for the final three spots in the bullpen: Glendon Rusch, Wil Ledezma, Kevin Cameron and Enrique Gonzalez. Cameron might be the odd man out, as he has only thrown 4 1/3 innings (10.38 ERA) because of first a hamstring injury and then a broken left thumb.

Cameron has Minor League options while Gonzalez (2.31) does not, which could prove to be the determining factor.


For this Padre fan.....it was a long time coming for this move.....thankfully we have better options for that #5 role. I also can get on board with the idea of keeping him in Portland in case of an emergency. After all you can never have too many arms right ?

Sunday, March 23, 2008

Padres Farm system getting some props

Farm is poised to be generous to San Diego whenever necessary

Headley Optioned to AAA Portland

Well all my wishing and voodoo I could muster didn't work enough to keep this guy on the ML roster.....but never fear, this most certainly isn't due to problems with him, it's only to get him a little more seasoning before they call on him permanently to secure that LF spot on the roster.....

Now go tear up AAA Chase, and we'll see you very soooooooooon !!!


Converted outfielder's departure likely makes Gerut a starter
Corey Brock from MLB.com reports

PEORIA, Ariz. -- In deciding to option their top Minor League prospect, Chase Headley, to Triple-A Portland, the Padres haven't given up hope that the former third baseman can make the conversion to left field.

They just want to give the 23-year-old a little more seasoning in the outfield, and that's why the Padres on Sunday sent Headley to Portland, even though his hot bat this spring made it increasingly tempting to put him on the 25-man Opening Day roster.

Headley hit .349 in 43 at-bats with three doubles and a triple, and he led the team in home runs (four) and RBIs (14) in 23 games. Headley had a single in his only at-bat in Sunday's 7-3 loss to the Cubs at the Peoria Sports Complex.

Headley, the Texas League Player of the Year in 2007, proved to be a quick study in left field this spring. He was tested on a wide-range of fly balls, line drives and base hits. He even threw a runner out at the plate in a game on Friday against the Brewers.

The Padres first floated the idea of having Headley make the move to the outfield during the winter, and he embraced it, knowing that third baseman Kevin Kouzmanoff, coming off a strong first season in San Diego, likely wasn't going anywhere.

Headley worked on fly balls at home in Tennessee and at PETCO Park in January, where the Padres' front-office staff watched him work out in the outfield for the first time.

With Headley going to Portland and Jim Edmonds likely headed to the disabled list with a strained right calf, it appears that non-roster invitee Jody Gerut will start Opening Day in left field against Houston on March 31, with Scott Hairston starting in center field.

Gerut has impressed the staff all spring, and is hitting .279 with three home runs and six RBIs.


Well this was really option #2 for our plans anyway, as Jody Gerut does play outstanding defense, and has proven he can hit for a full season during his rookie year for the Indians. Granted that was a few years and knee surgeries ago, but he's had a good spring on both sides of the ball, so lets hope this works out FAR better than the Termell Sledge or Jose Cruz Jr. nightmares.





Saturday, March 22, 2008

DeVannon and Fick given walking papers

Padres release veterans DaVanon, Fick
San Diego now has 40 players left in Major League camp

SURPRISE, Ariz. -- Veterans Jeff DaVanon and Robert Fick, who signed Minor League contracts with an invitation to Major League camp with the Padres, were released on Saturday.

DaVanon, a 34-year-old outfielder, has played in the Major Leagues more than six years with the Athletics, Diamondbacks and Angels. He hit .213 in 39 games last season with the Diamondbacks and A's. DaVanon has a career. 295 average in 528 games in the Majors.

DaVanon hit .290 with one double and one RBI in 31 at-bats in 13 Spring Training games.

Fick, a 34-year-old catcher, has nearly nine years of service time in the Majors with the Tigers, Braves, Rays, Padres and Nationals. Fick hit .260 in 106 games with the 2005-06 Padres. He has a career .258 average in 846 Major League games.


Continuing with the LF situation

Did anyone else notice that Chase Headley's defense in LF has improved to the point of throwing out runners at the plate now ? The big questionmark for Chase was going to be his ability to play defense in LF. Well yesterday in the 3rd inning Chase ranged over on a single to LF, and then threw a strike home to nail a runner at the plate.

QUESTION ANSWERED !!

This kid can rake from both sides of the plate, has great plate discipline, goes to all fields with the ball, we know now that he can field the position, and he's shown that he's able to throw. No question that he's still learning and will continue to do so, but why waste anymore time on platoon type guys out there, when the future is here and ready to perform ?

I say start Chase Headley now, and let it ride. Get this kid on the field and let him go through his learning curve this year, so that next year when it's time to bring up our next stud prospect Matt Antonelli, we wont be breaking in two rookies in the same season.

Peavy getting better with age

The news of Padres staff Ace and NL Triple Crown winner Jake Peavy working to improve, and better use his change up has reached the ears of the national media finally. This is something most Padre fans have been aware of for some time, nice to see the rest of baseball finally catch up. Mike Bauman of MLB.com writes a nice article discussing this very thing. Maybe now even more national eyes will be open to this sleepy little military town with one helluva good baseball team playing in it. Then again, is that really what we want here in San Diego ? More attention ?


Padres ace Peavy still improving
Reigning NL Cy Young Award winner adding a changeup

PHOENIX -- Imagine Jake Peavy getting even better.

It doesn't come easily, does it? Peavy, in 2007 for the San Diego Padres, was as good as anybody in the game. He was so good that he was historically good.

He won the National League Cy Young Award, unanimously at that. He also became just the second pitcher in 22 years to win the pitching equivalent of the Triple Crown, leading the NL in victories (19), strikeouts (240), and earned run average (2.54).

It was a dominant season, pitched on behalf of a club that led the Majors in team ERA, a highly competitive team that lost its postseason chance in a gut-wrenching Wild Card tiebreaker loss to the Colorado Rockies. The Padres' pitching should be a core strength again in 2008, and the strength starts at the top of the rotation.

The idea that Peavy might be entering an even better stage of his career is not a far-fetched hope. For Padres manager Bud Black, it looks more like the next logical step in the development of this brilliant career.

"He still has room to grow," Black said on Friday. "It's refining his game. He's 27 years old. I think he can learn to utilize his changeup more, change speeds, have a greater variance in velocity through his repertoire. Last year, it was a power arm; hard fastball, hard slider, hard breaking pitch. I think he's learning to throw slower at times."

Peavy was not at better-than-Cy-Young level on Friday in a start against the Milwaukee Brewers, but there was progress in one notable area.

He had wanted to get 100 pitches in, and he did that, throwing 104. The problem was, he hoped that would carry him through six or seven innings, but here he only went through 4 1/3. The Brewers peskier hitters, Craig Counsell and Jason Kendall in particular, staged a veritable foul-ball festival in their at-bats, driving up his pitch count.

"Could we please hit some more foul balls?" Peavy said with a smile after he came out. "How many foul balls did they hit today? Fifty?"

Peavy came out throwing his fastball at regular-season velocity. He was missing with it, narrowly, but still missing. In the first inning, he walked two batters in front of 2007 NL Rookie of the Year Ryan Braun. When a fastball that Peavy wanted away caught too much of the plate, Braun, to the surprise of no one who had ever seen him hit, belted a three-run homer.

After that, Peavy settled down and gave up only one more run. "I have mixed thoughts on my outing," Peavy said. "Obviously, you want better results than we got today, but that being said, I did get some stuff accomplished today."

Among the stuff that was accomplished was Peavy using his changeup with consistent effectiveness. He was the losing pitcher in a 4-3 game, but it was a Spring Training game, and with the changeup, he had taken a step forward.

"I believe I got much better as the day went on and that's something that I was pleased with," Peavy said. "I was able to get it under control and make a lot better pitches.

"I felt good. I threw all my pitches. I threw some great changeups, got some strikes on some changeups. I threw about 10 of them today and probably seven of them were swings-and-misses, so that's a positive sign.

"Here, I forced myself to throw it. During the season, it's not going to be a pitch that I'm going to try to find during the game. You just can't afford to, because you're results-oriented in the season. I hope by throwing it a lot in Spring Training, by getting the feel and getting comfortable with it, it's going to be there a lot more than it has been in the past."

The idea of getting better is a relative term, even for someone at Jake Peavy's level. There was work to be done, just based on this start. But the idea of improving is a constant part of pitching for him.

"I'm not anywhere close to where I want to be," he said. "In this game it's hard to be consistent, to stay on top of your game. There's no doubt in my mind that I know that I've got to work, and keep working and continually get better. And I look to do that."

In addition to his top-shelf stuff, Peavy has the ideal intangibles for this line of work.

"He's very competitive, passionate," Black said. "Good all-around game, good fielder, offensively, in this league, he does a good job with the bat. He loves to be out there, likes competing, all the characteristics of guys who win.

"He's not afraid. There's a lot of guys who, when it gets hot, are afraid of contact or afraid of getting beat. All good pitchers are not afraid to get beat. There's a lot of pitchers who lose because they're afraid to get beat. You know, the bad walk, not doing the right thing from a fundamental pitching standpoint. They beat themselves. Good pitchers don't beat themselves; they make the other team beat you."

It may be that Peavy's 2007 work was so good on so many levels, that it cannot be improved upon. Maintaining that level would itself be a major accomplishment. But the important thing is that this is a top-flight competitor who is not standing still. He has reached extraordinary and he is still trying to improve on that.


Peavy now anchors the #1 rated rotation in MLB, supported by the #2 rated bullpen in MLB. What many seem to overlook is just how good this Padres rotation is, and could be, if/when Mark Prior is back to full strength. Jake Peavy, Chris Young, Greg Maddux, Randy Wolf & Mark Prior would likely make the most formidable rotation in all of baseball.


We'll get into that another time though, as for now it's nice to see the National Media finally looking at what might very well be the best right handed pitcher in the game today. Way to go Jake.....keep up the brilliant work.



Friday, March 21, 2008

Edmonds Still trying to LEG out Opening Day

Jim Edmonds is still hoping to make opening day, and feels that it's a possibilty. He got to do some basic running for the first time yesterday, and said that it went well. If he's unable to go, and starts the season on the DL, it should make things very easy for Bud Black and company when it comes time to make crucial roster moves with guys such as Paul McAnulty, who as of now appears to be the odd man left out of the mix. Bill Center's article in the UT today covers quite a bit of this.
By Bill Center
UNION-TRIBUNE STAFF WRITER
March 21,
2008
PEORIA,
Ariz. – Jim Edmonds ran yesterday for the first time since suffering a strained calf muscle on March 6.
“It was very basic, but I felt good,” said Edmonds. “I can't feel optimistic yet, but I'm hoping I'll be ready for Opening Day.”
When Edmonds might return to the lineup this spring could be determined this morning when the Padres medical staff further evaluates the 37-year-old center fielder. “It's up to them seeing progress being made with my injury,” said Edmonds, who also threw and took batting practice.
“I still think he's a ways from being in a game,” said General Manager Kevin Towers, who said it's possible Edmonds could start the season on the disabled list.
But that doesn't mean Edmonds would have to miss the first 15 games of the season. Under baseball rules, he could be retroactived until March 31 as long as he doesn't appear in a major league exhibition game. That would reduce his absence to a minimum of five games.

“Having Jim play in minor league games is something we've discussed, although we haven't discussed it with Jim yet,” Towers said.
I know Padre fans are all hoping that Edmonds is back to his former self, and can play the majority of a full season, but at the same time many Padres fans are pulling hard for PMac to get his shot on the team finally. This year is a little different though as it will be PMac's final shot to become a Padre since he's out of options. If he doesn't make the team now, he will be exposed on waivers and likely claimed by another team and lost to the Padres. This could also be a blessing for him though, so don't be too upset if we do lose him.
One thing seems obvious to me though and that is this. If Edmonds starts the season on the DL, it almost assures that Chase Headley will start the season in Portland. This was almost a given to many at this point even though Chase has been nothing short of stellar in the spring, but given the contractual situations of players like PMac and Gerut it was going to be a hard sell to our FO as it was. Now that Edmonds is down, Gerut can slide to CF and PMac can take the 5th OFer's roll on the bench backing up LF and RF along with Scott Hairston.
Play Ball !!

Thursday, March 20, 2008

Hensley pain-free after mound session

Padres righty recovering from September shoulder surgery

Great news if you're a Padre fan, as this means even further depth from in the rotation. Last year the word was that Clay wasn't 100% truthful about his shoulder and tried to pitch through pain. As a result he did more damage to his already damaged arm. Good news is that in theory he's surgically repaired, much like Prior, and also like Prior has much to prove still. He's got a long career still ahead of him if he can mount a comeback and regain his 2006 form.

"My arm feels awesome," Hensley said. "We got over the hump a few weeks ago as far as feeling any kind of pain or anything like that. Now it's just mechanics and getting the arm strong. We've stretched it out as far as we can go from flat ground."

This could open up the door for a trade to happen sometime around June or at the ASB if our pitching depth is further increased. Again this is great news if you're a Padre fan.

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Padres' Greene refuses to accept negative labels



Jason P. Skoda
The Arizona Republic
Mar. 20, 2008 12:00 AM



Khalil Greene is a thinking man in a reactionary sport.

The San Diego shortstop doesn't respond to reporters' questions with something that can be clipped out of a ballplayer's handbook on dealing with the media and, although it's refreshing for the media, Greene's unique thought process can confound him - and his deep thinking works its way into his game. The 28-year-old has been known to change his stance at the plate during games or even at-bats.

"I'm a rhythm, timing hitter, so it comes and it goes," Greene said. "In time, things start to click, and you go from there."

It's been a point of criticism against the 2004 National League Rookie of the Year runner-up, but most of that talk disappeared last season when Greene was named the Padres' MVP by San Diego media.

"I don't analyze in those terms," Greene said. "I'm glad to be recognized to a certain extent, but it's not why I play the game.

"I'm interested in trying to get better, play well, win games, be entertaining and all of those things."

It came together when Greene stayed healthy all season for the first time, hitting 27 home runs and driving in 97 runs, blowing away career highs of 15 home runs and 70 RBIs.

Greene's average, which may never approach Tony Gwynn's worst for a full season (.309), was the second highest of his career at .254 - also his career average - as he played in a personal-high 153 games.

"I don't know if he was a different player," Padres outfielder Brian Giles said. "Last year was the first year he was healthy for a full season. He broke his finger, he broke his toe, and it's not easy when you miss a significant amount of time."

Greene, who was born near Pittsburgh but spent most of his youth in Key West, Fla., before heading to Clemson, is approaching the season like all of the rest.

"Essentially, it's a matter of staying on the field and continue improving," he said. "I don't have a mission statement going into the season."

The race in the NL West should be one of the better ones in baseball, and Greene's continued development will be essential for the Padres.

"(The division) was ostracized a little bit to a certain extent in '04 and '05," said Greene, who had only 11 errors last season. "Then it seems like a lot of young players were developed in the division with Colorado, Arizona and Los Angeles as well."

The improvement in the division plays into one of Greene's pet peeves when it comes to labels or stereotyping. The "NL Worst" depictions were general observations and didn't take in the whole picture. Similar to calling him injury prone - or saying he is a good fit in San Diego based on his surfer-look blond hair.

"I always take heed in labeling guys a certain way," he said. "People have certain expectations of what you should be like based on what you look like or what you've done in the past, and I am always hesitant to do that."

The same goes for suggesting the Padres might be fueled this season by their slide at the end of 2007, when they ended up in a tie for the NL wild card with the Rockies before losing in the one-game playoff.

"I find it ironic or interesting when people define the entire season by the end result," Greene said. "I don't do that. I don't look at the last at-bat of your career or the last play of the season when it's a negative, and say, 'OK, well, then the whole year was a waste.'

"I never look at a negative as a motivational factor to try and prove people wrong."

Lake Elsinore makes some news

Bonds Offered Position in Front Office

Storm Offer Job to All-Time Home Run King

Lake Elsinore, CA, March 19, 2008 The Lake Elsinore Storm have officially offered employment to Barry Lamar Bonds. The former San Francisco Giants left fielder has been searching far and wide this off-season for a new team culminating in an investigation by the players union into the lack of interest in Major League Baseball’s Home Run King. The Storm offer includes a cushy Media Relations position (with slight pay cut from $19.3 million), full use of baseball facilities and of course expanded cubicle space with barcalounger and plasma TV. “We just think the way he has handled the media with such grace over the years that he would be a perfect fit in our media relations department,” said Chris Jones, Storm General Manager.

Bonds is currently residing in his Bel Air estate and training in Los Angeles a short drive from The Diamond in Lake Elsinore. With a newly renovated Diamond Club Restaurant and a permanent parking space already reserved for ESPN “reporter” Pedro Gomez, the Storm offer a perfect location for a press conference to re-launch his big league career.

Lake Elsinore also has a brand new playing surface with evapotransporation technology which Barry will have full use of as well. “He’s in playing shape right now. He just hasn’t hit off live pitching,” Bonds’ agent, Jeff Borris, said Tuesday. “I’ve had conversations with Barry. It would probably take him about two weeks to get ready.” Lake Elsinore has a 27 person front office, plenty of arms for two weeks of live batting practice.


NEW YORK (AP)—Unsigned and thus far unwanted, Barry Bonds still hopes to play this year.

“I’m not going to retire. I don’t think that’s going to happen,” he told MLB.com Tuesday. “I’m working out. I’m training. If my phone rings, it rings. If it don’t, it don’t. I have a cell phone. I have a Blackberry. They work. If something comes up, I’m sure they’ll let me know. I’ll come back in July if I have to. It depends on the circumstances.”

Baseball’s home run king was indicted in November on four counts of perjury and one count of obstruction of justice stemming from 2003 grand-jury testimony in which he denied knowingly using illegal performance-enhancing drugs. He pleaded innocent.

“I want to win a championship or else I want to keep trying to win a championship until there’s nothing left inside me,” Bonds said. “I can still play.”

The slugger did get one offer Wednesday, to work in media relations for a minor league team.

The Lake Elsinore Storm, a Class-A affiliate of the San Diego Padres, released a tongue-in-cheek statement announcing that the club has offered Bonds “a cushy Media Relations position (with slight pay cut from $19.3 million), full use of baseball facilities and of course expanded cubicle space with barcalounger and plasma TV.”

“We just think the way he has handled the media with such grace over the years that he would be a perfect fit in our media relations department,” Storm general manager Chris Jones said.



Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Some pictures of spring training 2008

This was my 10th or so year heading out to spring training in Peoria, and thankfully I've gotten my wife addicted to going, so it's an automatic for me now. Here are a few shots from the back fields of some of our younger guys. Hope you enjoy

Cooper Brannan, you probably know him as the Marine turned baseball player thanks to a couple local radio dj's putting the pressure on the Padres FO, and getting him a tryout. Turns out the kid can actually pitch, and this year his arm strength is up, and so are his hopes. Good luck to you Cooper !

Don't know much about Carrasco, but I can tell you one thing, the ball came off his bat differently than the rest of the group he was hitting with.

Drew Cumberland is my new favorite youngster. He was in Eugene last year, not sure where he's headed this year, maybe Lake Elsinore. He's a young SS that seems to have all the right tools to succeed at the next level.......So watch out Khalil someones gunning for your job.

This was a shot of Chase Headley Friday night, about 3 pitches before he put a ball next to the light tower in RF. I got the HR on video, scroll down to the bottom to view it.


Nick Schmidt was one of the Padres 07 draft picks. They have high hopes on him, as he's a big strong arm that I think most see as projecting as a front line kind of guy. He has a fastball that sits in the low 90's, a +change up, and a slider. We'll see how things work out after his surgery, as he's going to miss all of 2008, but should be ready to go in 2009 and on the fast track once again. Good luck to you Nick we need more big strong arms coming up soon.


video

This is Chase Headley going deep on Friday night the 14th. This ball lands next to the light tower in RF, you can see the fans all fighting for it at the base of the light.........sorry I didn't hold the shot a little longer, I was just happy to get the HR on video to begin with.

I'll see about getting more on the site as I'm able and time permits.

GO PADS !!

3/18/08 Demotions have arrived

Today the Padres made some moves and the follow players were sent in various directions. Most are to be fully expected, however some of these moves shed light on how this roster could and likely will shape up in the very near future.

For some it will be a small let down, but for most die hard Padre fans I think these moves are the type that wont send any shock waves throughout the Friar Faithful.


Padres reassigned

LHP Wade LeBlanc
RHP Paul Abraham
LHP Arturo Lopez
INF Edgar Gonzalez
INF Marshall McDougall
2B Matt Antonelli
OF Mike Baxter
OF Will Venable
OF Drew Macias
OF Vince Sinisi
C Nick Hundley
C Jose Lobaton to minor league camp

They also optioned
C Colt Morton
RHP Mauro Zarate to Portland

They optioned RHP Ernesto Frieri to San Antonio

Finally they optioned RHP Wilton Lopez to Lake Elsinore

Again most of these moves were fully expected, and some make it fairly clear how the team is positioning themselves with regards to other players still fighting for a roster spot. The demotion of Edgar Gonzalez seems to mean that Callix Crabbe has won his spot on the roster, as he's the last remaining super utility type of player left standing.

While the demotion of LeBlanc was pretty expected, he was the darkhorse to earn the #5 role. Since he was sent down to AAA, that can only mean the Padres brass is pleased with the way Germano has really come on, or Glendon Rusch has performed. Germano seems to have added a little to his velocity, which should make the rest of his pitches that much more difficult to hit. Rusch is coming off a scary season where he found himself fighting for his life after he felt a tug in chest and had to be rushed to the hospital. His season ended in Sept. when doctors discovered a blood clot in his lung. Now he's back, healthy and pitching with a purpose it seems. I think both these guys make the team, one as the #5 (until Prior is ready), while the other gets bullpen time and does long relief duty.

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Great Wall or bust

Well our boys landed safely, and before they could even get out of the airport Trevor Hoffman was doing interviews with a local TV news station. The boys headed off to the hotel pretty straight away for some good old fashioned jet lag sleeping. Tomorrow is a big tourist day for them, as they are off to the Great Wall. Wonder if any of them will try to fire a ball over it just to say they did it ?


The Beijing Itineary is as follows :

March 13 Padres visit Great Wall of China
March 14 Padres hold youth clinic at Fengtai School
Teams work out at Wukesong Stadium
Dodgers visit Great Wall of China
March 15 Dodgers vs. Padres, 1:07 a.m. ET
March 16 Padres vs. Dodgers, 1:07 a.m. ET
Clubs fly back to U.S. after game

And in case none of you were aware Beijing is 9 hours ahead of us here on the Left Coast. So keep that in mind when you're planning out your Friday.

GAME ON 3/12/08

Well we're on the eve of our annual trip and I can't wait ! We're packed and set to leave, half the Padres are somewhere over the Pacific ocean, and the other half are getting ready to gear it up for the day. Gametime temp should be around 85 degrees, sunny with a slight breeze......talk about rough duty.

Todays line up looks like this -

CF Jeff DaVanon
2B Tadahito Iguchi
C Michael Barrett
1B Tony Clark
SS Khalil Greene
RF Chip Ambres
LF Chase Headley
3B Marshall McDougall
P Chris Young

Time to get on the winning track guys....lets p/u CY and score some runs.
On a side note, look for Brian Giles to see some plate appearances as early as Friday......great news if you're a Friar faithful.

PADRES WIN........ 11-5 over the Giants.

Recap of todays game.... Headley put the nail in Lincecum's coffin today with a bases loaded, bases clearing double to dead center over Scott Rowands head. This puts Chase Headley's spring batting stats at .400ba / .414obp / .840slg , and give him a gawdy 1.254 OPS.

San DiegoABRHRBIBBSOLOBAVG
DaVanon, CF2220200.333
1-Crabbe, PR-CF2100001.310
Iguchi, 2B2120000.389
b-Nivar, PH-2B3020000.500
Barrett, C4112015.368
Gonzalez, En, P0000000.000
e-Canham, PH1000000.000
Meredith, P0000000.000
f-Hunter, PH1000001.500
Thatcher, P0000000.000
Clark, 1B2120100.438
c-Gonzalez, Ed, PH-1B2111000.450
Greene, SS3000028.125
d-Lopez, J, PH-SS2111002.333
Ambres, RF3000018.238
Gerut, RF1211100.391
Headley, LF3013010.400
McAnulty, LF1113100.391
McDougall, 3B2000110.286
Kazmar, 3B2000001.333
Young, P2000012.500
a-Durango, PH1000000.000
Bass, P0000000.000
Fick, C2000011.111
Totals411114116829




2008 MLB Season is upon us.....

A warm Santa Ana breeze blowing out of the east, the smell of freshly cut grass, the buzz kids running around in little league uniforms, endless chatter that only the promise a new season brings, then the crack of the bat, and the fanatical cheering that follows ....... This can mean only one thing........


The 2008 MLB Season is here !!


I have shirked my duties for an entire year and I do appoligize for this, please give me a mulligan (if I can borrow a term not MLB related). I am gearing up for my annual pilgrimage to Peoria AZ to watch our beloved Padres play, and so my best to give what updates I can on the future of the clubs prospects. I will be there during the time when many of our players are in China during that historic trip, so I'll do my best to get to as many players as possible, and will include as many shots of the goings on as I can.
This site is now linked with a friend of mine who is starting to break into the biz. Please check out my friend Todd Kaufman and his baseball takes at http://prosportsbeat.com/ . He was selected to be their MLB correspondent/sports writer of sorts, and I wish him the best of luck and continued success.

Ok more to come........soooooooon..........

BATTER UP !!!