Padres bloggin' since 2007

Phrases I’d Like Matty V to Use On Air

January 29th, 2008 by

I love Matty V. He’s witty, irreverent, and is loaded with pop culture info that by all rights should be totally useless to anyone, but he pulls it off. He chose to pick up a mutual option for 2008 as opposed to leaving for greener market sized offerings in LA, Chicago, FOX, or ESPN.

I don’t understand it, you wanted to leave in 2004. Now you chose to stay. Matt, you are an enigma wrapped in a conundrum wrapped in the warm pillowy flatbread of another enigma.

But I can’t stay confused with you. Because I love the way you put Grant in his place. You seem genuine. I love the way you seem like yourself on air.

That said, nobody’s perfect. Here are some phrases I think you should use, or continue the use of, during Padres broadcasts:

  • absofruitly posilutely
  • guesstimate
  • get in your el camino and go back to the ozarks
  • Equivalent Average
  • bodacious catch
  • the sample size isn’t large enough to draw any meaningful results
  • folks, you should check out thesacbunt.com
  • is it a slam?
  • the Generals win!
  • watch me host a celebrity pull my finger tournament, next week on FOX
  • shut the fuck up Mark

When it comes to actual analysis Matt, you suck. Leave it to the professionals. And by the professionals I mean us.

Posted in media, the funny | 2 Comments »

Do We Even Care About Ability?

January 25th, 2008 by

Khalil Greene Named 2007 Padres MVP

…when captain .290 OBP is the team’s most valuable player? Why can’t we move past these homecoming king valuations when determining the most worthwhile contributors to a professional club?

I don’t know if it’s the poor use of poor to begin with counting statistics like RBIs that gets to me the most, or if it’s my sneaking suspicion that blond hair and good looks are what compound the over-rating of Khalil Greene.

I’m not saying he should be actively shopped this winter. That usually gives away the leverage necessary to make a good trade. But if there is / was a similar package to that of Nick Swisher, and I don’t think that’s out of the realm of possibilities, I think you have to take it. No question.

Who would replace him, you ask?

Granted, there isn’t anyone in the farm who is ready for the job, but that doesn’t mean there aren’t good options (formerly) out there. When only the best defensive shortstop this side of Ozzie Smith was available for mere pennies on the dollar, that answers that question.

Adam Everett at $2.8 million is the true definition of a moneyball signing, even when one considers the .299 career OBP (coincidently higher than the 2007 numbers posted by a certain Padres shortstop). Everett was undervalued in the market this year, and the Padres should have jumped on him.

This would leave an overhyped Greene available for trade, while gaping holes begging for young talent exist in center, or a corner outfield spot (Giles to left? Anyone? Not saying he needs it at this point, but it’s something worth planning for).

Back to the MVP

VORP, or Value Over Replacement Player is a nice stat for our use here. It incorporates all aspects of run scoring for a hitter, can be used for pitchers to compare with hitters, and adjusts for the importance and difficulty of each position on defense. It does not adjust for defensive ability however, so I would give a slight additional edge to Gonzalez, Greene, and Cameron.

Padre 2007 VORP
Jake Peavy 77
Adrian Gonzalez 38.4
Khalil Greene 23
Josh Bard 22.5
Mike Cameron 20.4
Milton Bradley 19
Kevin Kouzmanoff 18.6

What’s a blogger / former Padres disappointment to do at this point? Do I really need to explain the above? Greene is a good player no doubt, but not what he is made out to be.

Lets just convince our girlfriends / wives that Padres players other than Khalil Greene are also good looking. I have a personal hankering for Kouz, but that’s me.

Melvin Update (1/25): I can’t believe I forgot to mention Khalil’s defense in the original article. The thought was brewing in my head during the writing process, but never got out. Perhaps the endless binges of Moonshine and balut have finally caught up to me.

Here are Greeney’s (Greeny?) OOZ and RZR stats courtesy of the Hardball Times.

Year RZR OOZ
2004 0.839 46
2005 0.799 37
2006 0.832 36
2007 0.848 59

Compare these numbers to Adam Everett (linked above), keeping in mind Everett was hurt in 2007. RZR stands for revised zone rating, or the percentage of balls hit into Green’s zone on which he made the play. OOZ stands for out of zone, or the balls hit outside his zone he turned into an out.

They show Greene’s 2004-2006 was good, but not great. Only in 2007 did his play catch up to his reputation.

For reasons why I think this phenomenon exists, check out my article Tighter, I Can’t See His Pores!

Posted in awards, gripes, hot stove, players | 5 Comments »

The kase against KT

January 19th, 2008 by

A couple months ago, Towers was hoping to lock up Khalil:

“He’s one of our better players, and we’d like him to be here for some time,” General Manager Kevin Towers said yesterday.

Now…

“A long-term contract with Khalil at this time is probably doubtful,” said Towers. “I don’t know, it might not be able to get done.”

Padres, Greene fail to reach deal, eye arbitration

Towers went on to say that the problem might not be monetary but rather familial. The Greene family is back on the East Coast and health concerns might draw Khalil’s interest over there.

As we went over a couple months ago, parting ways with Khalil might be in the best interest of the club. While a solid fielder and a great power threat (coming from his position), Khalil’s inability to get on-base negates a lot. If we could dangle him out there in the effort to grab a replacement shortstop/replacement power bat (or both), we might as well. Now that the timer’s seemingly been set.

Isn’t Pittsburgh on the East Coast? Bay and Jack Wilson would do. And if the Pirates insist, they can throw in Ian Snell as well.

Ray update: The Rockies have locked up their shortstop.

Personally, I think they did this to make us look bad. Why else would they extend Tulowitzki before finding out if he can hit at sea level or not?

Posted in hot stove, players | 3 Comments »

Take that, Olympics

January 18th, 2008 by

The Padres are going to China first.

New Dodgers manager Joe Torre and Padres Hall of Famer Dave Winfield are scheduled to appear at a reception on Jan. 24 to announce Major League Baseball’s first games in China, exhibitions between Los Angeles and San Diego on March 15-16.

Dodgers, Padres to play exhibition games in China in March

Personally, I think this is a great idea. I think it’s good for MLB to expand its international relations, especially to countries whose language we’ll all be speaking in twenty years. And if the Padres can get in on the ground level, even better. Especially if it helps us land the baseball equivalent of Yao Ming.

There are, however, grumblings that the players aren’t too high on this idea. After the WBC destroyed Peavy’s regular season, there should be some hesitation about disrupting the regular spring training routine. But, at the same time, this is a great opportunity and you can’t blame management for trying to take advantage of it.

Posted in misc | 1 Comment »

1-16 Sacrificial Links

January 16th, 2008 by

Doctoring The Numbers (Baseball Prospectus)

Rany Jazayerli points out Khalil Greene’s all time record setting 74 extra base hits coupled with a .291 on base percentage.

Blue Jays, Royals, Indians Bring It Back (MLB.com)

(old-ish news) I’ve long held the belief that the longer a team wears a uniform, the better it gets. These franchises join the Milwaukee Brewers returning to a classic look for a weekly retro home game. The Chargers half-assed it in their recent jersey revamp (though in my opinion, if they were to create a new design altogether I like what they did) .

The Padres’ brown color scheme is classic, fits the mascot, and most importantly, popular among fans. I think the Padres would do well to follow suit. I’ll take 1974-1977 or 1980-1984, thanks.

Padres Uniform Archive (Dressed To The Nines / Baseball Hall Of Fame)

Speaking of uniforms, if you haven’t seen the archives for perusal at the Baseball Hall Of Fame website, check that ish. Here’s a bit more of our sport’s glorious past to get the browsing started.

Interview With Kevin Towers (MLB.com)

These chat transcripts are so much nicer than those articles with 90% fluff we knew about and two or three sound bites, aren’t they? Plus Towers is always so candid, interviews like these are a real pleasure.

The big news is that Towers is still interested in a left fielder to be acquired through a trade.

Towers: The one position that we still may be looking at would be a corner outfielder. This would most likely come via a trade, rather than a free agent signing. As of right now, Jeff DaVanon, Scott Hairston, Paul McAnulty, and Headley are all of our in-house candidates at the present time. That’s not to say that we might still add a corner outfielder before Spring Training starts, more than likely via trade.

The team has talent that could hove above replacement level as it is. Therefore, I think if a move is made we’d see a player capable of more than that, meaning a big time deal is a possibility.

This may happen if Headley has poor showing in left, or Kouzmanoff is part of a deal leaving space for Headley. My hope is that if we do give up a young gun or two, we receive an equal share of young, salary controlled talent in return.

Other topics of the chat transcript include an Estes update, Towers’ thoughts the front running NL contenders, and a provocative tidbit on his trading partners.

Melvin Update: Eff yes:

“We would rather have a younger, controllable player via a trade,” Towers said.

I’m not sure if it’s obvious or not, but damn I love the way this team is run.

Baseball Prospectus Drops ‘Kouzy’ On Us (Baseball Prospectus)

Creative, at best, nickname for Kouzmanoff. Not a lot else new in the article for Padre fans, short of recognition for the 15th best VORP for major league third basemen. “Kouzy” landed just short of Mark Reynolds and Troy Glaus.

Posted in sacrificial links | No Comments »

Patriots? Be Glad They’re Not The Cardinals

January 14th, 2008 by

Hah Hey! How about them Chargers! The Sacrifice Bunt wishes to congratulate the Chargers and fans for this exhilarating season and playoff run.

San Diego Chargers

Wasn’t life rough back in early October? The Chargers were 1-3, and the Padres, well, I’m just beginning to talk about those few games again.

Look at us now! Enjoy this folks. Remember where we came from. Our beloved city has two formidable sports clubs, and we get to not live in New England.

Ray Update: Don’t forget, we ended Indianapolis’ undefeated streak a couple of seasons ago. It’s kind of our thing.

Posted in misc, postseason | No Comments »

1-12 Sacrificial Links

January 12th, 2008 by

Best Outfield Arms Of 2007 (Hardball times)

I found this link and tucked it away for a future Sacrificial Links session, thinking it was a great find and people would appreciate the information. Then Ducksnorts and Friarforecast picked it up, probably some others too, and I look like the lame follower instead of the cool indie trend setter I deserve to be. Good read either way.

How To Evaluate Hitters (Hardball Times)

Intuitive, simple evaluation method in case VORP or RC27 aren’t your thing. Dave Studeman compares Tony Gwynn, Andre Dawson, and Tim Raines with some eye opening results. Studeman does admit that era, ballpark, and the different values of outs are important considerations his analysis did not account for.

Planning Ahead Will Save You Money (Union Tribune)

Prices are going up, but if you buy before the end of March the 2007 ticket prices will apply. Otherwise they’re going up, with day of game prices up even more. The team also announced a pre-game buffet for $39 dollar top of western metal tickets, and $20 of “concessions and/or merchandise” included with $45 right field pavilion seats. When Ray and I started this blog, I never envisioned needing to think up jokes to go along with news like this. Oh well.

The Concept of Clutch (Baseball Prospectus)

Here is your Sacrificial Link “classic”, a 2004 article from Joe Sheehan of Baseball Prospectus. No numbers, just a theoretical discussion on the merits of the concept of clutch.

Of course, these statistical arguments assume both numeracy and a quest for the truth. Too often, neither of these things is in play. The notion of clutch persists because it allows for a storyline with a hero and a goat, and that’s both an easy tale to write and an easy one to read.

Posted in sacrificial links | No Comments »

A moment of silence

January 11th, 2008 by

Brewers, Cameron strike deal to bolster outfield depth

The Milwaukee Brewers have reached an agreement with center fielder Mike Cameron.

According to The Associated Press, the deal is a one-year, $7 million deal with a club option for 2009.

Cameron, 34, hit 21 homers and drove in 78 runs for the Padres last year. He will miss the first 25 games of the 2008 season, as he serves a suspension under the terms of baseball’s drug-testing program.

This is a dark day for us here at the Sacrifice Bunt. We’ve made no secret of our affinity for Michael Terrance Cameron, so a part of us has died with the news that he’s signed with Milwaukee. But, like any good ex-girlfriend(s), we’re happy for Mike.

Milwaukee has a solid team and is one that will actually appreciate what he does for them. He’s not only bringing his superior glove to the middle of Miller Park but he’s allowing Ned Yost to move Bill Hall back to third and out of center (where he was overmatched), which moves Ryan Braun out of the position (where he was overmatched).

Milwaukee comes to Petco in August, so maybe we’ll sponsor a Sacrifice Bunt night at the park.

For Mike.

Melvin Update: For Mike. Also for The Sacrifice Bunt.

My feeling about appreciation is that things soured with the negotiation breakdowns at the beginning of the year, then again during this off season.  It looks like his demands for a longer term may have backfired. People may see a one year deal with Mike as a better option than Edmonds.

Posted in hot stove, players | No Comments »

Hens love roosters, geese love ganders

January 8th, 2008 by

Yeah Goose! Elected to the hall from back when men were men, closers were closers, and he who controlled the mustache controlled the world.

Goose Gossage

There are enough opinions out there if you’re interested, especially in re: Tim Raines. You have to be excited when a former Padre goes in, especially in this particularly well uniformed era, but for some reason the hall of fame debate doesn’t interest me that much. Mostly the making fun of things is what I find entertaining. The rest of this post will be spent talking about whatever I feel like.

What excites me is the new simpsons references tag, which you can see on the right sidebar there. We went back and added other posts that include our trademark brand of semi-complete references to the greatest first 10 seasons of all time.

I hope we don’t get sued for that picture of the Goose. The guy I stole it from had it posted on flickr, so lets hope he gets served first. So yeah. Turn on the New Hampshire primary coverage. Or make some Padres Miis. Either way.

Hopefully Ray will be able to save this post.

Posted in the funny | 1 Comment »

“American Gladiators” is back

January 6th, 2008 by

But Vasgersian’s not doing it.

I hope he fired his manager after missing out on this.

Melvin’s Thoughts:

My favorite was the bloody forehead girl, who bonked her dome on a metal bar, then bloodied up her face and proceeded to finish the race. I’m surprised and glad her race wasn’t ended early by officials for something lame like a bloody face, unlike those decidedly un-hardcore leagues like the NBA would do.

My runner up favorite goes to Hulk Hogan for the record breaking use of the word ‘brother’ in an interview. Which interview you ask? I don’t know either.

Ray’s Thoughts:

For the duration of the series, I’m going to keep track of the Gladiator I think would work the best in left for the Padres this season.

 Tonight’s left fielder: Justice. 

Posted in media, misc | 2 Comments »

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