Padres’ Points: Front Office, Luebke, Gyorko

The San Diego Padres are 35-40 and now a season worst five games under .500. The club is 3-6 since Pat Murphy took over as the manager of the club. It is beginning to become clear the team the front office assembled last winter is not a playoff caliber team. The Padres are still 6.5 games back of the Dodgers and 6.0 games back of the second wild card spot, which still gives them a small chance of turning things around.

Buster Olney of wrote an article (insider access only) discussing the Padres and opines it’s time for San Diego to hit the reset button.

Olney writes if the Padres wouldn’t have traded for Matt Kemp (.243, five home runs), the Padres could have had Yasmani Grandal who is now fully healthy (.264, 10 homers) and is highly rated in defensive metrics.

If they club wouldn’t have traded Grandal, they would still have Jesse Hahn who in 14 starts has a 3.40 ERA. He could have been a fourth or fifth starter in what has been an inconsistent rotation

If the club wouldn’t have traded for one year of Justin Upton, they would have had Jace Peterson (.279) who is playing as an everyday starting second basemen for the Braves.

Finally, if the previous front office didn’t trade Huston Street last summer, the trade for Craig Kimbrel would have never happened and the teams wouldn’t have been forced to take on the Melvin Upton Jr. contract. Matt Wisler, also in the deal made his first career start in the last week pitching eight innings while only giving up one earned run. Wisler could have provided pitching depth for an organization that currently lacks it at the upper minor league levels.

In both the Upton and Kimbrel deals, the Braves got promising Padres’ prospects all performing relatively well in the minor leagues.

Long time baseball reporter Peter Gammons echoed similar concerns about the Padres, particularly about the lack of talent in the farm system that will make it difficult for the club to compete in the future. Also, he opines that the hefty contracts of Matt Kemp, James Shields, and Melvin Upton Jr. will cause obstacles to putting a competitive team on the field before 2017.

On the other hand, Padres’ owner Ron Fowler still sees the current team as one that could compete in the playoffs and sounded in a recent interview confident that his club could still turn it around (Interview Link). He said in the interview, “We’ve got a team that can compete.”

So far, the club hasn’t shown it can compete with the top teams in the National League, but they have about one more month before the front office has some difficult decisions to make.

Injury Notes

  • Brandon Morrow (right shoulder inflammation) threw long toss from 120 feet, so says a tweet from Dennis Lin of the San Diego Union Tribune. He hopes to throw a bullpen session this weekend.
  • Cory Luebke (Tommy John surgery) has been moved up to Double-A San Antonio to continue his rehab assignment. In his first appearance with the Missions during this rehab stint, he pitched one inning, giving up two earned runs.

Friar Notes

  • Jedd Gyorko continues to hit well since being demoted to Triple-A. As of Thursday, he’s 14-for-49 with four home runs and nine RBI. Overall, he’s .286/.375/.551 and it wouldn’t be out of the question to see him sooner rather than later back at the major league level.
  • Corey Brock of notes that all nine players drafted in the first ten rounds have been signed from this year’s draft. Adlemar Burgos (outfielder, 8th round of the 2015 draft) was the latest to sign with the organization for an undisclosed amount.
  • Corey Hale (left handed pitcher, 28th round), Braxton Lorenzini (right handed pitcher, 33rd round), Nathan Foriest (left handed pitcher, 35th round), Blake Rogers (right handed pitcher, 37th round) are all on the 2015 Arizona League Padres Rookie team meaning they have all signed with the Padres.

Friar Moves

  • The Padres announced multiple roster moves this week. The Padres recalled right handed pitcher Kevin Quackenbush (2.95 ERA) from Triple-A El Paso and optioned right handed pitcher Nick Vincent (3.55 ERA).
  • The Padres place right handed pitcher Dale Thayer (3.41 ERA) on the 15 day disabled list with a strained right shoulder. This is retroactive of 6/17, so he is eligible to come off the disabled list in early July. To replace Thayer on the roster, they selected right handed pitcher Marco Mateo from Triple-A. In the minor leagues this year, he pitched 29 innings while only giving up 6 earned runs (1.86 ERA). He last appeared in the major leagues with the Cubs back in 2011.
  • Finally, the club moved Brandon Morrow to the 60 day disabled list. He’s been on the disabled list since May 5th.
  • The Padres released right handed pitcher Zach Segovia, according to the Pacific Coast League Transaction Page. Segovia had major league experience, including short stints with the Phillies and Nationals.  He had a 6.75 ERA between Double-A and Triple-A this season.

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