F–king Padres

November 12, 2008 – 2:01 pm by McD

It doesn’t take a genius to see the San Diego Padres aren’t a rich team. But they aren’t a poor team either. Yet suddenly they’re dumping good players left and right. Well, they’re dumping both good players because of “salary concerns” even though everyone knows the team is dumping salary due to owner John Moores’ impending divorce. Let me say in no uncertain terms: this is a travesty and an affront to every Padres fan and player that ever stuck with the team through the shitty years. Including when the team demanded a new stadium so it could compete financially. And it’s a personal insult to both Jake Peavy and especially Trevor Hoffman.

I was born in San Diego in 1980, the same year the Padres went 73-89 under Jerry Coleman in his one year as manager. I would get used to records such as the mediocrity of 1980, but falling in love with that team was easy. From the awful brown uniforms to the colorful players to my mom’s crush on Bruce Hurst, I was a Padres’ fan through and through. Phillips, Booter, and I remained loyal, intense fans all the way through the fire sale of 1993, the wild success in 1996-1998, the post-’98 fire sale, the team’s subsequent awfulness, and the recent successive division titles.

Why deal with so many ups and downs? Clearly the organization couldn’t keep it together, right?

Throughout all that insanity. the team never lost its meaning, it’s special connection with the fans. The awful teams of the early 90s and early 2000’s still had a cast of characters true fans could absolutely root for. I still remember ironically cheering Billy Bean’s excellent job hustling from right field to back up first base on grounders and always hitting the cut-off man. Hell of a player that Billy Bean (later famous for coming out of the closet after retirement). I have an Archie Cianfrocco baseball card on my mantle. The early part of the 21st century gave Padres fans the joy that was Eric Owens and the time Phillips chased his SUV down so he could autograph a ball I caught in the stands that he threw up to us as we were dressed as “The Eric Owens Fan Club”. Mind you, these were awful, awful teams, but we loved them. They were almost always a shitty team, but they were our shitty team.

The organizational constant through all that has been GM Kevin Towers. He created the division winners in the 90s and 2000’s and is one of the best baseball men in the game. Recently, the team brought on Sandy Alderson as another baseball mind to make sure the team was run well from top to bottom (not just at the Major League level), given its limited funds. In the short time since Alderson has been with the team, the bullpen has gone from strength to liability, the offense has stayed awful, and we have few high-level prospects. He also insulted Trevor Hoffman the last time he and the team were negotiating in 2006. In case you forgot, and judging by the ratings, you did, the Padres were God-awful in 2008.

But now the team is losing its soul too.

After the 2008 debacle ended, there was at least the positive idea that we had some very talented young players at the major-league level (Adrian Gonzalez, Kevin Kouzmanoff, Chase Headley, and Nick Hundley) and we only needed a couple of pieces to be competitive again. Sure, those pieces were a top-three starter, a big bat and a fast center fielder who could lead off, but we’re close, dammit.

Now Jake Peavy is all but gone for a mix of prospects and underwhelmed fans and Trevor Hoffman, the Hall of Fame closer and the only player left from the 1998 World Series team, isn’t coming back either. Wait, “isn’t coming back” should read “was insulted and run out of town by the team” when they pulled his contract offer off the table.

Owner John Moores is going through a very ugly divorce and there’s a pretty decent chance this salary dump/fire sale is a direct result of that. I’m not going to tell a man what to do with his property…wait yes I am. John Moores needs to sell this team now. He needs to save the Padres and the city from “rebuilding” when it’s completely unnecessary, especially with such a smart front office.

Yeah sure, sports is a business, but that business is putting asses in seats, not dumping as many veterans as possible. Who will fans want to see more? Trevor Hoffman closing games and being within a year or two of retiring or Heath Bell and his fascinating take on fitness? I’m also pretty sure the fans won’t be happy about the team trading away the best pitcher this organization has ever had, while he’s still in his prime, so we can watch third-tier guys get lit up every night next season. Hell, the only reason Adrian Gonzalez isn’t gone too is because he’s cheap as hell.

This isn’t “rebuilding.” It’s not “salary restructuring.” It’s a fire sale, pure and simple. The team has already given up on 2009 and maybe even 2010. The undercurrent of both the Peavy deal and the Hoffman dump is that both players were unhappy with the direction of the team. In other words, the front office isn’t necessarily trying to win right now and ownership wants to save money. Damn 50/50 laws. Why does it have to be so hard to be a rich, white male in this day and age?

San Diego fans have been condemned to the same hell occupied by Pittsburgh, Kansas City, and Florida fans. We’re all stuck with organizations that no longer care about the fans and have little or no loyalty to players who have given their entire careers to the team. It’s all about money in San Diego now, and there isn’t a damn thing we can do about it. My team has lost its soul.

I’m going to cope with this disaster the only way I know how: in true Padres fashion. I’m going to use the phrase that’s gotten me through the good times and the bad times (mostly bad). Every time I see a story about this now, every time I think of the Padres, and every time I see them play in 2009 I will say what I’ve always said:

Fucking Padres.

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...

  1. 9 Responses to “F–king Padres”

  2. While I really like Heath Bell (and his questionable fitness practices), it is disheartening to lose Trevor. As much as he bugs me, he has become the face of the franchise and it’s too bad he won’t retire a Padre.

    Add Matt Vasgersian (who at least made the broadcasts interesting when the games sucked) heading off to the MLB Network and there’s really no reason to ever watch the Padres next season.

    And the catcher’s name you’re looking for is Nick Hundley.

    By Red on Nov 12, 2008

  3. Amen.

    By Booter on Nov 12, 2008

  4. Um… who cares about Hoffman? Are you that stupid? That guy is old and is blowing saves all the time. Hell… even when he was in his “prime” he blew 2 saves in the world series. That guy is a joks… meaningless saves in meaningless games. You want big game closer see Mo Rivera. As for the Padres well this is typical. You name all those players like that means something. I too have been a fan since I was a boy growing up in the early 80’s. Padres always sell off there teams. ALWAYS!! If you are the fan you say you are then you will know that to be true. So why the dissapointment… this is normal man. DEAL WITH IT!!

    By Armando on Nov 12, 2008

  5. Dude, you said it all right there. Add in the fact that Smuggy Alderson talks down to fans and that Petco is built for a bunch of coporate cell-phone talking d-bags.

    Fucking Padres.

    By Dave H. on Nov 12, 2008

  6. Damn, Nick Hundley, that’s the one. Sorry to see the Bard/Barrett juggernaut go. Really. No really.

    And all this can be fixed in my eyes by bringning Chris Gomez back…which also involves possibly my favorite Padres story ever: Phillips, me, and his buddy Bobby from their la-dee-dah private high school are sitting in the Murph sometime during the 1998 season. The lineup finally works its way around to Chris Gomez (always hitting seventh or eighth) and Bobby says “Gomez is a bum.” Gomez then promptly homers (he only hit like four that entire season) and we laugh our collective asses off. So the lineup goes through a couple of times again and Gomez is up later in the game. Of course both Phillips and I are mocking Bobby’s assessment of Gomez’s offensive prowess and wondering if he prompted the homer with his “praise”. Naturally, Gomez homers AGAIN. And as the fans are all yelling and cheering and going crazy, Bobby looks over at both of us and says “He’s still a bum.”

    By McD on Nov 12, 2008

  1. 4 Trackback(s)

  2. Nov 12, 2008: » F–king Padres
  3. Nov 13, 2008: Should Jake Peavy be eager to waive his no-trade for the Braves?
  4. Nov 14, 2008: » Something Happy: The Padres At Least Still Have Their Fans Sports Schtick
  5. Sep 30, 2013: Cool Sports Thievery, Lions Fan Shirt, U. Of Texas Cheerleaders Spell

Post a Comment