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A weblog covering the San Diego Padres.

Friday, April 30, 2004

Kentucky Derby

Tomorrow (Saturday) is the Kentucky Derby. Definitely one of my favorite sporting events of the year. Unfortunately I haven't followed horseracing as much this year outside of my awesome day at the Breeder's Cup at Santa Anita.

Anyway, the big race goes off at 3:04 PM Pacific time. I'll probably be sitting inside all afternoon trying to do a Padres post while watching the Derby coverage. So look for an interesting Derby/Padres mix of posts tomorrow if my computer holds up (always an issue).

My friend Victor called today already with a sleeper pick suggestion (Borrego) and says he's been watching tapes of the races all day. What a pro! Borrego's ironic since the Anza-Borrego Desert State Park is one of my favorite places on Earth and is located just a little over an hour's drive east of San Diego.

I also got the scoop on some of the horses and side stories from of all sources, my Mom. She's pretty excited too, I guess I've gotten her into the racing spirit, at least for events like the Derby. I had a blast last year when I upheld the Opening Day at Del Mar tradition with Victor (6 years straight, I think, since well before legal gambling age) while inviting my family. I think they had a good time also. You can't go wrong with an opening day at any racetrack, especially the beautiful Del Mar Racetrack. "Where the surf meets the turf at ooolllllddddd Del Mar". Thank you, Bing Crosby.

So that's my plan for tomorrow, and hopefully I can incorporate the Padres into that assuming the computer doesn't wig out like normal.

So my request to you, my loyal reader, is to start a Derby discussion below in the comments section if you wish. Make your favorite picks, talk about anything anecdotal or interesting about the race, or what have you. Tomorrow should be fun!
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Shooter... Straight Shooter?

Not so far. Towers with the expected whazzzuuuupppp? See here.

Strange story all around. Rumor-mongering isn't good, but the Pads have kept a good lid (perhaps they have no clue what's going on). I just hope for Rod's sake he has a terrific explanation, just a very weird situation.
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Thursday, April 29, 2004

Bah Humbug

Humbug Journal stumbled upon Ted Williams Field. Check the April 26 entry.

There's also a link to a ton of cool CHEAP San Diego eateries in the slide show, first page.

I love San Diego.
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Wednesday, April 28, 2004

Standings

It's early, and there's the obligatory need to scream out "small sample size" but look at the NL West:

San Diego: 12-9
Los Angeles: 12-7
Colorado: 9-11
Arizona: 9-11
San Francisco: 8-13

Maybe the Giants sans Bonds and a healthy Schmidt are the worst team in baseball? Could be. I still don't know what Sabean was thinking with the Michael Tucker pickup. Maybe it's just a bad early start for the Bay Area Bombers, but I know the Padres will "take it". Perhaps a revealing clue is that Bonds is swingin' for the fences this year. I was having lunch with a friend who pointed out if Bonds thought the Giants were contenders this year he'd probably be less involved in trying to catch Ruth in one season as it appears he is doing. Look at last year, his HRs were way down and the Giants won 100 games.

Correlation? Maybe. But Barry would never admit to as much.

As for the Dodgers... Well, I think they're falling back to Earth. But it is surprising that their offense is something like the third best in the NL. They're probably better than expected, but not by much. Baseball seasons are long and tend to shake out the flukes, even if it takes until September (ahem, Royals of 2003).

I think the standings will continue to adjust for a month or so, but it looks like right now San Diego and L.A. are the class of the division, if only by a little bit. I'm curious if the Giants make a move, or the D-backs, because it's hard to think that L.A. can just walk right past the giants for that #1 or #2 spot.

On a side note, would it have been so bad for the Padres to have kept Kevin Walker over Eddie Oropesa? What was Towers thinking?
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Monday, April 26, 2004

Wi Fi Wonderland

I hope they bring this to Petco. And maybe some of the other stadiums like SDSU's Tony Gwynn.
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Where Ya Been?

Yeah...

Studes from Hardball Times visit Petco.

I gotta get back to posting...
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Monday, April 19, 2004

Appreciation

Many thanks to Jon at Dodger Thoughts for his help on a little project of mine. Jon's an interesting guy who plays it humble, but he's also one of the best and biggest bloggers out there. Always like it when I bump into nice people.
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Friday, April 16, 2004

Some Friendly Linkin'

I'm adding CaseyAtTheBlog to our friend's list. I took a quick look at the site, pretty cool. Not as team-specific, but that's good, kind of what I'm interested in, although most of my links are team blogs (scratching head).

Thanks to all of you who continue to stop by even as I've slowed down a bit (not intentional).

Continue to stop by all my links also, that's what I do when I have a spare moment. It's why I linked them in the first place. No sense in giving readers crappy links they wouldn't find interesting, I wouldn't want to do that to you.
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Thursday, April 15, 2004

Apologies

My apologies to this site's loyal and also its infrequent readers. I've basically been up a tree, but I did put up a post the other day that was pretty fun about InNOut and some other things. The problem was my computer zonked right as I was finishing it and I basically threw my hands in the air for two days.

Anyway, we'll try and get back in the swing of things here soon.

Today's note: I'm watching the Cubs/Pirates game on WGN, and noticed Pittsburgh has become a wasteland for former Padre arms. They've got Brian Boehringer (a Petco Padres fave while he was with the Pads before falling off the face of the Earth) and soft-tossing Brian Meadows.

Sammy's up to bat and I'm out the door, catch you all later!
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Tuesday, April 13, 2004

Nos Encantamos Ducknorts and InNOut Ramblings

Geoff has a great story up at Ducksnorts about an interesting plan of his to visit all the Cal League ballparks. He's being a responsible adult and doing a few at a time, but it's an interesting read about his first wing of the trip, plus pictures, so be sure and stop by.

Also, the good Californian he is, he made sure to keep the InNOut stop in remote areas tradition alive. I've been to some on the way to Vegas and also one somewhere in Arizona between Phoenix and Tucson. Even better, Geoff linked the InNOut "secret" recipes site.

I'm a sucker for the grilled cheese. I grew up in the Midwest so cheese is a necessity, and InNOut cheese is sooooo good. It's only like $1.39 also, so you can get a couple.

I find that the InNOut employees don't know the 2X4, so here's a helpful tip to save some embarrasment: when you want extra cheese, just order extra cheese. I can't tell you how many people I've confused asking for the 2x4, so many that I'm starting to think it's not really part of the secret menu.

Another three InNOut stories while I'm at it...

#1-My first meal upon arriving in California from Illinois was an InNOut burger. My Dad greeted my mother and I and our Dog at the airport (he had been living here for a few months while I finished middle school back in Illinois) with a big limo, and we went all over town, InNOut, Fiesta Island, Hotel Del Coronado, you name it. Still one of the coolest if not awkward days in my entire life. At the time I wasn't the most pleased with leaving my home of 13 years and jumping on a plane to a place I'd never been 2800 miles away. But that's adolescence for ya.

#2-At USC's recent "Trojan Huddle" Spring Football scrimmage, the InNOut "Cookout Trailer" was there. Actually, about a half dozen of 'em were there. With admission each fan got a coupon for two burgers and two drinks and a bag of chips (not normally InNOut food, but they were french fry substitutes for the cookout trailers). Being the unaware person that I was, I didn't really think the food was free and people were lining up just because InNOut was so great.

Well after the scrimmage I get smart and figure out just how free that food is, and catch the last trailer just before it closes, and got my two free burgers. I was stuffed after that. And sheepish. The great thing was USC had knocked down the $25 regular admission price down to just $6 for students, so the day ended up being a great bargain because I could see my beloved Trojans (not that I hadn't already made every Spring Practice... I'm not obsessive or anything... really...go away...) and chow down on yummy food. How can you beat that?!

#3-In high school I had a friend of a friend who'd hang out with us some times. This guy was BIG. B-I-G big. And proud of it. Loud too. And arrogant. But anyway...

We were chilling at the local InNOut when big guy decides he's going to eat an 8x8. So he goes and orders it. I'm still in line at this point, a few people back. Well, by the time I'd gotten my order in his thing was already made, so he sits down. I pay little attention to what's going on, standing and waiting for my food to come.

Well, as I'm just picking up my food about three minutes later big guy yells at me from across the restaurant, "hey, Brian, sfjisjafdsij (unintelligible cookie monster noises)" and chomps down the last huge bite of the thing.

No kidding.

Think about that for a minute. Big guy killed an 8x8 in three minutes and lived to tell about it.

It gets better.

While I'm relaxing and eating, laughing with everyone else about the incident, big guy gets up and orders a #1 (Double-Double, fries, soda). He'd already killed off the fries from his first burger. So the process was repeated again.

I think he finished that second one before I was done with my meal (note: I'm a notoriously slow eater).

Insane.

So there you go, I managed to make a full post today about InNOut. And for those of you not from California (or Arizona) who haven't been, well I gotta tell you you're missing out. InNOut isn't just some trendy California phenomena, its REALLY good. I had my local biases growing up but the place is a worthy institution out here. And the Snyder family that runs it has kept the myth alive in part by great branding, the obvious good food and simple menu, and importantly, avoiding too much expansion. It's still only found in California and Arizona and maybe a few spots in Nevada as far as I know. They actually keep every restaurant in the family, so there's no franchises to speak of.

Now that I'm hungry...

I'd go to one right now, but 1)I have other things to do and 2)Los Angeles InNOuts are really difficult to get to, and there aren't many to begin with. There's the one near fucla (BOOOO), on Sunset (which is a pain, and the locals can be a nuisance) and one a little before the ucla InNOut somewhere just off the 10 before the 405. Oh, and one in Burbank.

All take a good half hour drive from USC. No thanks.

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Sunday, April 11, 2004

Well Wasn't That a Bummer

Giants score five in the 9th to rally and win 6-3. Brian Giles had an inside-the-park homer (well, triple and an error).

The bullpen's been terrible this season, and the starters have been great. Peavy had another terrific outing, as his fastball was moving all over the place. Great stuff.

Week in Review:

The Padres are now 3-3, having lost two out of three to the Dodgers on the road before taking two out of three from the Giants at Petco. They have scored 24 runs and allowed 22.

The good news is that the starting rotation has done its job and the hitters are faring pretty well. They've gotten on base a lot but haven't been the most efficient at scoring runs so far.

What is notable is that every single game was "winnable". In fact, both Dodger losses were considered Padre wins on the surface, as was tonight's game. I have a feeling the bullpen will fix itself, since Bochy's been tempting fate with a lot of Valdes and Oropesa where normally Osuna and Otsuka might come in. Hoffman's gotta get it together though, or everyone will start wondering where Shooter Beck is. Same goes for Linebrink, who had been so steady all of last season.

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Sunday Night Baseball

The Pads will be broadcast nationally on ESPN tonight, looking for a three-game sweep of the G-men (unbelievable) at Petco.

Felipe Alou promises no more funny business and has moved Barry The Great to third in the lineup. Of course, it could have just as much to do with Michael Tucker as anything else. Sabean is a smart guy but I never understood that pickup. Moving along...

I'm doing way too many things right now, but if I can get a little more done I'll be chillin' with new site co-author Matt to watch the game at his pad. If form holds the ice cream truck with the remix music will swing by ohhhhh... 30 times, and the kid with the loud scooter will go up and down the street ohhhhh... 10 times. Not that either are annoying or anything.

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In Case That Didn't Make Any Sense

The post below, "Fish=Pads??" was penned by this site's new (second) author, Matt. Although Matt is a good friend of mine, we tend to disagree on a lot of things. Which is why if you're reading some random story and you go "whoah that's out in left field from the normal stuff" or even "hey, this makes more sense than that normal writer, what's wrong"...

It might just be Matt writing.

Anyway, I'm excited, because Matt's interested in being a part of this, and he already got a pretty cool piece up (aside from referring to the whole thoughtful process of OBP worship as a broad category of SABR). He's nowhere near as into the whole OBP, SABR, Moneyball aspect of baseball analysis as myself and so many other bloggers, but he's a smart guy who scored a 170-something on his LSATs and also slept at a Holiday Inn Express last night, so please give him a warm welcome and be aware that we now have two writers here.

Thanks!
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Saturday, April 10, 2004

Making Friends The World Over

Adding a link to A Citizen's Blog for the Philadelphia Phillies. You know, that team predicted to win the NL East. Just took a quick look, already like the use of images and the story about just who exactly is Pennsylvania's baseball team. The results kind of surprised me. Take a look (linked at Friends links to right).
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What You Got?

Forbes has the padres valued at $265 million. Take a look, there's link within that area to compare teams.
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Fish = Pads??

The New York Yankees, Arizona Diamondbacks, and San Francisco Giants have several things in common. For starters, they’ve all been to the World Series in the past 3 seasons. They all have payrolls well above the league average. And they all have seemingly nothing in common with the San Diego Padres.

But fear not Padre fans. These four aforementioned teams also have nothing in common with the reigning World Series champion Florida Marlins. World Series champion Florida Marlins?? Sounds funny, or at the very least, improbable, which it certainly was if you use traditional statistical measures. But given some careful analysis, the Marlins’ success makes some sense after all.

Glancing over the Florida ’03 roster, the first thing that jumps out is the age column. Lots of young up and comers combined with a handful of veterans in key positions. Derrick Lee, Juan Pierre, Miguel Cabrera, Dontrelle Willis, and Josh Beckett, all in their early to mid twenties, were joined by veterans Pudge Rodriguez, Mike Lowell, and Mark Redman.

A core of quality young players will not always jump out on paper, especially when using measures that often underrate improvement from year to year, such as SABR. It is not possible to project a player’s numbers simply by flopping his OPS from the previous year over to the next year. The improvement shown by the Marlins young core clearly exceeded the expectations of these statistical estimations.

Take Juan Pierre, for example. He played in Coors in ’02, so one would think his stats would soar for a year, then return to sea level when he…well, returned to sea level. His ’02 numbers broke down like this:

Avg.: .287
OBP: .332
SLG: .343
OPS: .675
With 90 runs, 31 walks, and 47 stolen bases

In ’03, his numbers exploded to:

Avg.: .305
OBP: .361
SLG: .373
OPS: .734
With 100 runs, 55 walks, and 65 stolen bases

This is a kid who was 25 years old. Shouldn’t such a progression be expected as he comes into his prime? Especially when considering a player like Pierre, who’s biggest asset is his speed, it only makes sense that as he developed a firmer sense of plate discipline and became a more experienced base runner, he would develop into a very effective player.

Pierre was joined by Miguel Cabrera, Derrick Lee, and Mike Lowell, who really seemed to hit his stride before getting injured, as position players who far outperformed many statistical estimations. However, even given all these vast improvements, perhaps the biggest boost for the Marlins came from the production of their young pitchers.

Dontrelle Willis became a legitimate top of the rotation guy, dominating the opposition in stretches last year. Josh Beckett had the capability of shutting a team down, and veteran Mark Redman quietly had a great rebound year after a tough stint in Detroit, lowering his ’02 ERA by .62 and decreasing his opponents batting average allowed by nearly 30 points.

A young rotation, some up and coming hitters, and some solid veterans…sounds like a good, and strikingly familiar, combination.

Lee, Cabrera, Pierre…Burroughs, Greene, Hernandez…Willis, Beckett…Peavy, Eaton, Lawrence…Pudge, Lowell…Nevin, Giles…hmmmm…

Now granted, the Marlins had a different KIND of young hitters than the Padres do currently, but the idea remains that the Padres have a standout core of young players that can be counted on to IMPROVE their numbers this season. Whether they will improve to the extent that the Marlins did remains to be seen.

It can be argued that the group of Padres veterans surrounding the youth insurgence is in fact even stronger that the Marlins’ veterans were last year. Giles, Nevin, Payton, Wells, Klesko, and Loretta is an extremely solid, if not spectacular, group. This means that the Padres’ young hitters should be counted on to do less than the Marlins’ young guns were.

This isn’t to say that the ’04 Padres will enjoy the same level of success as the ’03 Marlins, it is merely pointing out the similarities that exist within the core of the two teams.

Unlike the Yankees and Red Sox, teams like the Padres and Marlins have to rely on the improvement of their young players if they wish to make a run at the playoffs. The Padres were in a bit of a unique situation this year as they were able to add some fairly significant payroll and make some key acquisitions with the unveiling of Petco. But even with the spending increase, they are still nowhere near Steinbrenner/Henry levels. Consider this fact: The Yankees have two #2 overall draft picks BACKING UP Jason Giambi at first base this year in Travis Lee and Tony Clark.

If you can’t outspend ‘em, you gotta out scout ‘em and out draft ‘em. The Padres have had some very solid drafts in the past several years and have made several key trades to aid in their quest to return to the top of the NL West. The “Kevin Towers, Sludge Merchant Extraordinaire” theory really comes into play when you consider the Andy Ashby deal with the Phillies several years back. He managed to spin an aging hurler coming to the end of his career (4-7 with a 5.68 era and a big ol’ salary for the Phillies) into Adam Eaton, who now looks poised to become on of the anchors of a young and promising Padres pitching staff.

Then consider some of the late round draft picks the Padres have had. Jake Peavy was a 15th rounder, undrafted free agent Oliver Perez and Jason Bay helped land Brian Giles, and Brian Lawrence went in the 17th round. Throw in the success of top picks Burroughs and Greene, and you have the makings of a couple solid drafts in a row. Add to that Josh Barfield, Tim Stauffer, and the rest of the promising minor leaguers, and it appears the Padres have in fact had some scouting coups, which is exactly what they need in order to compete.

There will always be lean years for low budget teams, but the Padres appear to be in the midst of an upswing. Padres management should now have a few additional dollars to throw at a key midseason acquisition or two should the young players improve and keep the Padres in the thick of things in the NL West. A core of improving youth surrounded by key veterans…it’s worked before, let’s hope it works again.

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What It's All About

Great link about what this whole blog experience means, in a micro context. I'm nowhere near the level of those Mariner fans, obviously. But we can have some fun with the process.

Right now I think the Padres 'get it' and thus don't have Geoff and myself knocking down the doors. The days of DeHaan and Cruz etc. appear to be over. So far the offense has a pulse. The pitching mix is a lot of fun too, although harder to analyze with two young arms (Peavy, Eaton) that have been predictably erratic and also notably brilliant at times. Fun times.
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Friday, April 09, 2004

Off Day

The cool thing about being in Southern California is having three baseball teams to watch at any given time.

The rough part is when you're in Los Angeles the Padres usually aren't one of them.

I'm sitting here watching the Angels against the Rangers and feeling more than a little agitated. It could be worse, since I could be watching the Dodgers.

Side Note-Attaboy Hank Blalock. The Rancho Bernardo HS alum just snapped an RBI single against Tater Ortiz to put Texas up by one.

For a great recap of last night's Padre game, check out Ducksnorts. Geoff even has some digital pics from his seats in RF. I didn't know it, but Bonds was robbed of 660 by Jay Payton. Way to go Jay! I guess that makes up for his three Ks (maybe?).

Sticking with baseball, I couldn't make last night's USC game against cal. Ian Kennedy went out and got the loss in a 4-2 game. I'll try and make tonights or Saturday's game, put some kind of recap or notes up.
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Thursday, April 08, 2004

1-2, How About You?

That hurt. Three winnable games.

I was going to put up a quick blurb about how well the pitchers... hit. But Geoff at Ducksnorts has that capably covered.

The good thing is, tonight is (drum roll)...

OPENING DAY AT PETCO PARK.

If anyone's going, let us know, and leave some game comments when you get back.

I wrote my review of the Ballpark's exterior a few weeks ago (somewhere in the archive), but I'm curious as to what everyone thinks of the interior.

As an added bonus, Barry Bonds will get to test out Petco's "Bonds Proof" right-center. I just hope the Padres can squeeze a few wins out of the G-men. Frankly, I'm sick of watching them lose to the team with the ugly brown uni's. I guess that's the exchange for our complete ownership of the Dodgers lately (sans the last two games) in a cosmic kind of way.

What's interesting so far is bullpen use. Three games and no appearances from MIT Szuminski, yet Eddie Oropesa and Ismail Valdes have a combined 5 appearances and 2 IP. Otsuka (OATS-ka for the handful that didn't get the memo from Padres PR brass, Jerry Coleman, or Peter Gammons) has looked good, though.

Besides all the hitting going on, check out the starting pitching (yes, it's just three games, yes it's early, yes, yes, yes):

Pitcher ERA
Eaton 1.13
Peavy 3.38
Lawrence 1.80

Of course, they also had the benefit of pitching IN Dodger Stadium against the hapless Dodgers of Alex Cora, Adrian Beltre, Dave Roberts and Cesar Izturis.

Eaton's outing was particularly impressive-
8 IP
4H
1R/1ER
3K/1BB

He outpitched the lesser Weaver and deserved the win.

For those curious, tonight's game pits Padre castoff Dustan Hermanson against Pt. Loma born Boomer Wells.
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Tuesday, April 06, 2004

In Game Update

Padres up 4-2. Peavy just balked in a run and Milton Bradley is really really good. Can't believe the Dodgers got him.

Oh, and if anyone wants an interesting prediction, you heard it here first the A's will try to get Carlos Beltran. Eerily reminiscent of Johnny Damon situation. And now there's 3 other Beane disciples/trading partners playing GM around the ML.

Peavy's line:
5.1 IP
7H
And they just took the graphic away. Eddie Oropesa's now in bottom 6th, one out, Board Game on first, Green at bat.

Later...
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Awesome Resource

Just found a site called Baseball News Blog (soon to be linked to the right). Actually someone visited this site from that site and thus I took a look. They have a listing of all relevant team blogs and a lot of cool news/stories/anecdotes daily.

Enjoy.
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Oorah!

Well, sorry for the delays my loyal readership. Scorn me after not posting right after opening day, I understand.

Anyway, if you haven't seen already, the Pads won beating the rival Dodgers before LA's largest opening day home crowd ever.

Quick notes:
Nevin hit a grand slam to open the game and PetcoPadres soon to be favorite Jay Payton slammed a 2-run dinger.
Brian Lawrence looked pretty shaky, but got the win. The Dodgers actually had a ton of hits, but their anemic offense couldn't get many runs. The Pads' bullpen was up and down, but it was good to see them close the game out without too many problems.

I'll have more later.
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Monday, April 05, 2004

Opening Day

Padres @ Dodgers, 1:10 PM PST.
Brian Lawrence vs. Hideo Nomo

I hope Brian's over his Cirillo-esque funk. I love pitchers like Lawrence (when they're not erratic). Given that, I predict if he's still not performing or can't shake it the Pads will trade him before the break. Ahhhh expectations.

The expectations should be based on the strong roster, but instead it's the 'weak' division.

Anyway I'm mad because I could have made this game but some unexpected obligations got in the way. Errrr...

ByTheWay-The Hardball Times finally got around to their Padres Preview/5 Questions from Pad fan Vinay Kumar.
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Sunday, April 04, 2004

Damn

Those Moneyball guys looooove to trade. 6-4-2 chronicles the Dodgers/Mariners trade. Looks like the M's got fleeced. Just another smooth move by Bavasi.

Remember just a few days ago in my preview how I said the M's were in trouble? Ladies and gentlemen of the jury, exhibit A.

They didn't give up anyone major, but you gotta wonder, since both guys would be wonderful throw-ins for a midyear type deal involving better players instead of taking crap off the hands of the Dodgers.

That is exactly the type of move smart GM's make, and DePodesta knows it. Psychologically it makes him have a sense of depth for his team as far as minor league and tradable players, and in the last week his barely noticed moves have given him a lot more $1 chips at a table full of guys with $20 chips but rocks for brains. H-U-S-T-L-E-R. Just watch.
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Dry Run #2

The Padres had their first looks at their new digs yesterday, losing 7-4 in an exhibition game to the Mariners. Brian Giles smacked the first homerun there. All unofficial, of course.

Strangely, the players say they fear spitting on the field. That won't last.

In other news, the Pads traded Mike Darr crash survivor Ben Howard to Florida for a live-armed reliever by the name of Blaine Neal.

MIT grad and soon to be overblown story Jason Szuminski has made the team, as has Eddie Oropesa. Eddie really flew below the radar but here he is.

Sterling Hitchcock will start the year in the minors, but not before getting today's start against Gil Meche in Petco's final exhibition tuneup.

Bummer of the week:

Trojan alum and Padre super-sub (assuming he keeps hitting like he has the last week) Jeff Cirillo is out for 4-6 weeks after breaking his finger. Bochy says he can hit but can't throw. Subsequent roster moves to compensate for the injury are not known at this time.
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Old News, Relevant News

Lefty reliever Kevin Walker was picked up by Brian Sabean's San Francisco Giants. Interesting going within the division. Something to watch.

Anyone have Padre tix yet? My family got Padre/Cubs tickets, so this is about four years running catching Pads/Cubs games in San Diego. I'll probably catch a few other games in the "cheap" seats. I already miss the $6 behind home plate and up high seats. Infamous John Rocker boo-ing went on from up there. Also saw Rodrigo Lopez's MLB debut in same section. Good times.

Response form question: Your thoughts on the Q. I actually liked it a lot, it had its charms, and was a lot of fun to walk around, lots of different seating sections, just a very comfortable place with great parking and tailgating.
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Saturday, April 03, 2004

Slash and Burn

I criticized Hardball Daily's Studes the other day...

Now I praise.

He has a brief yet very good look at Honus Wagner. Take a look.
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Friday, April 02, 2004

Happy Day!

Today is my Birthday. Don't know what I'm doing yet, but just thought I'd post that if anyone is feeling generous I've got my eyes on trying to get tickets to the Unwritten Law show at LMU on April 17. Even better, Unwritten Law is a San Diego band!

What is weird is I just read the other day one of their members, Wade Youman, was fired just a few weeks ago :o(. Apparently he and wildman/frontman Scott Russo were like water and oil. Damn.

I caught their show at USC August of the year before last, and it was GREAT. Scott was messed up but he always is.

Anyway, off to other stuff.
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Thursday, April 01, 2004

Jenna Von Oy revisited

We're taking a bit of a turn here, aren't we? This post is in response to JD at Reds Daily and his "First Crushes" post.

I thought about making a list, but I've had a ton of crushes and would have to think hard to get a list even close to definitive. My mind's too much on girls like Kristin Kreuk right now.

But back to miss Von Oy. I think she's a Trojan so I've got love for her, but JD was onto something. Just a moment ago I was listening to music choice on my TV, and a Kelly Clarkson song came on.

Now, I've never really watched American Idol so I don't have that kind of attachment to Miss Clarkson. And she's obviously not a first crush. But I think she fits that demure, bouncy girl mold of Von Oy.

I hope JD reads this and puts in his $0.02 on Kelly. I betcha he might like her, but I could be completely wrong.

Anyway, it just struck me to post about Kelly.
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Lesson Learned, and Other Stuff

Visits to this site are way down the last two days. I haven't posted in about two days. You guys win.

Onto the stuff...

Geoff at Ducksnorts is a funny guy:

Hippies have bad acid flashbacks. Padre fans have bad catcher flashbacks. I mistakenly referred to Ramon Hernandez as Carlos Hernandez yesterday. Hope I didn't freak anybody out with that one. .

Before I forget, Happy April Fool's Day! You fools! :o).

Slate has this story on Petco Park, this site's namesake. Basically praises it for adapting to the area, being a true piece of urban development, and so forth.

In all honesty, I think it was rather easy for Petco to be that. It's RIGHT downtown. It's on the water. But it was also in a bit of a seedy area, occupied by (I cannot attest for this) what the local papers considered a more or less homeless army.

But I'm glad things like low income apartments and similar things will be (are) built near the park. We'll see how the years treat that area, but it's getting pricey in a hurry, just taking a look at all those very fancy condos aimed at empty nesters (as noted in the article).

At the same time I'm also disappointed in other parks not having similar success. Granted, they don't have the built-in draws of Gaslamp District and a nearby, well-used waterfront. But a lot of other American cities have similar trendy areas built out crap. Pasadena's Old Town/Colorado boulevard is exactly that, for example.

People like things to do, and most big towns can get boring fast. Building a trendy/hip area with restaurants and shops and some apartments should not be that hard (maybe I'm naive), especially if there's a guaranteed 81 nights a week of 40,000+ potential customers. Variety is the spice of life and a useful ballpark district is exactly that.

Maybe America's just rundown and old in some of these towns (Pittsburgh, Milwaukee), I don't know. Maybe that's why I like California so much. I like Milwaukee, too, but it doesn't have that energy and lightness to it. But places like The Ballpark at Arlington and Coors Field should have been more successful, those are both young, trendy, Western cities. Major League Baseball is batting .333 right now, but I guess that's still a good hitter in their book?

Onto more stuff...

Jay Payton is ready to go. Mark Prior ready or healthy ready, I don't know.

Side note, looks like Jeff Cirillo's starting to swing the bat well. I'm excited if so. Cirillo and Payton could prove extremely valuable this year. Imagine having a legit-hitting Cirillo coming off your bench? What a flip-flop from last year possibly.

Here's a great link on the Petco Park story and total costs.

Recap:
City of San Diego- $205.9 Million
Padres- $173.2 Million
Centre City Development Corporation- $73.9 Million
San Diego Unified Port District- $21 Million

Nearly half a billion dollars!

Another interesting read/link, this time about Lane field, the Padres' home in the way back. It's now the area that would be directly across from the Star of India. In other words a parking lot.

Now, for a potentially big announcement. When I started this I was hoping another Padre fan/friend would get involved, but that doesn't look like it will happen. Well, after explaining this site to a different Padre fan/friend, he took an interest in contributing.

I'm not 100% certain he'll join the PetcoPadres team, but if he does he'll be a great addition to the site. I just didn't want anyone to be surprised if someone else starts posting here in a few days or there's writing that's not my style. Just a heads up, I'm looking forward to the addition if so. He's out of town right now but hopefully he'll make an introduction if he comes on board, he has the password and green light to post whenever (probably in a few days).

I will say he's definitely not as into the SABR stuff and for lack of another word, 'Moneyball principles' that I tend to use and find very interesting. But he is a smart dude who like myself is a very good idea person and someone who likes to express their opinions. Even better, we disagree often so things could get interesting here ;o).

I'll save his name for his own introduction later, sorry for all the he's and him's, but hopefully that'll be soon (think Monday or Tuesday, just in time for the start of the season).

Extra opinions are good, there will be someone here to keep me in check if this works out!

Until then, I'll try to keep up the post-a-day habit, even on weekends, I've been really busy lately as I've told you, but I'm looking forward to some really fun stuff on here.

Until my next post...

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