[tps_title]2. Matt Kemp Had a Decent Season at the Plate[/tps_title]
From the day the Matt Kemp trade was announced, even before the conflict about the health of Matt Kemp’s hips, many around the game of baseball questioned the Padres and Preller for what seemed like an ill-advised trade from the start, even without the potential health issues. Despite all the doubts about Kemp, both from Padre fans and from fans of baseball outside the organization, Kemp actually had a decent season in his first year in San Diego.
Even with one of the worst first halves in his whole career, Kemp rebounded rather well and really put together a strong second half to the season. After an awful first half of the season in which he had a slash line of .250/.291/.382 with a wRC+ of 87, Kemp exploded in the second half of the season, increasing his average by almost forty points, his on base percentage by almost fifty points, and his slugging percentage by almost 150 points, with a wRC+ of 140 in the second half. In the second half of the season, Kemp was the offensive force the Padres were expecting to get in the middle of the lineup when they first executed the trade. While Kemp’s defense in right field was a bit of an adventure, as he was one of the worst right fielders in baseball, his offensive success is something the Padres hope he can build on going forward in the final four years of his contract, a contract which the Padres are now almost completely on the hook for going forward.