TMS MLB Preview 2009: San Diego Padres

SO LONG: SS Khalil Greene, P Clay Hensley, P Trevor Hoffman

WELCOME: C Henry Blanco, P Chris Britton, OF Emil Brown, 2B Chris Burke, P Kevin Correia, 2B David Eckstein, OF Cliff Floyd

PROJECTED LINEUP
1. Jody Gerut CF
2. David Eckstein 2B
3. Brian Giles RF
4. Adrian Gonzalez 1B
5. Kevin Kouzmanoff 3B
6. Chase Headley LF
7. Nick Hundley C
8. Luis Rodriguez SS

Starting Rotation: Jake Peavy, Chris Young, Cha Seung Baek, Kevin Correia, Josh Geer, Wade LeBlanc
Setup: Cla Meredith
Closer: Heath Bell

San Diego, as we all know, is a beautiful city. There are abundant entertainment and extra-curricular options for its inhabitants. Given that it's 80 degrees and sunny nearly every day of the year, should we listen to the bellyaching of San Diegans over having a sub-par baseball team? Absolutely not. There is little loyalty to the San Diego brand. Their fans are generally weak of will and disassociate themselves from the team in times of trouble. They have an absolutely stunning park, in a refurbished and thriving downtown, yet they just don't care. I've been attending Padre games since Petco Park opened, and I've never really understood the disinterest. Then I witnessed this offseason, and I've come to realize that Padre fans all have a little red-headed stepchild in them. They have had no recourse but to anxiously mope around, waiting until their father figure (ownership) once again shows them the back of his hand.

Fortunately for the people of San Diego, the John Moores reign of terror has come to an end. As a part of his divorce proceedings, he has sold the Padres to a group headed by former Arizona Diamondbacks CEO Jeff Moorad. With new ownership comes the hope that the Padres will once again threaten first place in the mediocre NL West. Sadly, that will not occur this year; the Padres will be incredibly lucky to stay out of the cellar in 2009. There is a noticable dearth of talent on the roster, very little pitching aside from Jake Peavy, and no power from a lineup that plays in such a spacious park. Gone are the staples of Khalil Greene and future Hall of Famer Trevor Hoffman. Who will be next to leave for greener pastures? Peavy was the hot name all winter, in many a rumor to the Braves and Cubs. In an effort to cut costs and start fresh, look for he and tanned girlfriend-beater Brian Giles to be gone by the end of July. This is certain to be a disheartening fucking season for Padres fans.

Mr. Sexy Time: This award goes to San Diego's lone offensive force, Adrian "Wario" Gonzalez. Giles is quickly heading to DH status, and really, you couldn't pick any of their other position players out of a police lineup. By all accounts the rest of the fielders are "nice", "cute", and "swell" to spend 162 games with, but it's largely a hodgepodge cast of placeholders.

The MedicAlert Sterling Silver Bracelet Award: Elder statesman Cliff Floyd has joined the Padres after subconsciously leading the Tampa Bay Rays to the World Series last year, a feat he could not perform in Chicago in 2007. If this is his swan song, he picked a nice climate to spend his last days.

The "This Guy's Dead/Cross Him Off Then" Award: Ummmm, David Eckstein? Chris Burke? Jody Gerut? Luis Rodriguez? Hank White? Nick Hundley? Emil Brown? This team is a cornucopia of journeymen and never-were's. Yikes. Hey, at least Sea World is open year-round!

Further Reading:
Ducksnorts
Gaslamp Ball

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