Wednesday, March 21, 2012

2012 MLB Preview #15: San Diego Padres

Greetings! My apologies for the long break between these, but the madness hit, and here we are... let's get to the NL with the bottom of the NL West...


C - Nick Hundley/John Baker
1B - Jesus Guzman/Yander Alonso
2B - Orlando Hudson
SS - Jason Bartlett
3B - Chase Headley
LF - Carlos Quentin (injured)/Kyle Blanks/Yander Alonso
CF - Cameron Maybin
RF - Will Venable

This... isn't a good lineup. The best player on the roster offensively in 2011 was Cameron Maybin and I have no reason to think that won't be repeated. The former Tiger/Marlin prospect posted 40 steals to go along with a solid OPS and plus-defense in centerfield. That said, if he's your best player, it's not a great sign. Jesus Guzman hit a little bit in his call-up last year, but there are worries there, and Yander Alonso (the key piece of the Mat Latos trade) could be a year away. The middle infield is good defensively and won't absolutely murder you at the dish, but there's no pop there. They acquired Carlos Quentin for "pop" but he's already hurt, and they'll be relying on some combo of Blanks/Venable/Denorfia at the corner outfield spots. It gets ugly quick.

Starting Rotation

1 - Cory Luebke
2 - Tim Stauffer
3 - Clayton Richard
4 - Edinson Volquez
5 - Dustin Moseley

Petco! When you see the names on this list, you're not impressed, but the numbers are pretty reasonable for the guys who have pitched with the Padres before. Luebke emerged last year with a 3.29 ERA and a 1.07 WHIP in 17 starts with a K-rate of nearly 10 per 9 innings, and has the profile of an upper-tier starter, especially in that ballpark. Stauffer had 31 starts of sub-4.00 ERA and while he doesn't have elite stuff, he's figured out that pitching to contact in Petco is a good thing. After that? Question marks. Richard and Moseley were both decent despite bad win-loss record last year (bad offense) but neither has high-end stuff, and that's before you get to the enigma that is Volquez. The former uber-prospect of the Reds has officially fallen from grace after a 5.71 ERA last year and a near 5.00 mark for his career, but that said, in 2008 he won 17 games with a 3.21 ERA and 206 strikeouts. The stuff is there.


Huston Street takes the reins from Heath Bell, and while Street is actually the better pitcher if you look at it statistically, he's historically had a very rough time staying on the field. If he's healthy? Above-average closer. After that, Luke Gregerson is an elite set-up guy who took a small step back last year, but is still high-end. They have some other elite "stuff" guys like Andrew Cashner and Frieri, but they're also relying on Micah Owings. I have no idea.


75-87, 5th in NL West

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