6 hits, zero runs, and a missed no-hitter later the Padres find themselves gripping the ledge of the National League West. They are one bead of sweat away from losing their grip and slipping into the basement. One more shut-out away from closing in on the inaugural season’s record of 18 shut-outs.
The Padres attempt at a franchise first no-hitter was broken up by the Dodgers in the bottom of the ninth Saturday. This is the same Dodgers team that has been trying to dig out of the McCourt’s nasty divorce and the basement of the NL West all season.
Yet, the San Diego Padres are not as bad as they seem. Or are they?
Out of 30 teams, they rank 29th in runs scored, 29th in batting average, 29th in slugging percentage, and 28th in on-base percentage. A quick look at the team’s statistical leaders reveals only one player hitting over .265, one player with more than 5 home runs, and one player with more than 35 RBI’s.
Let’s compare this to some of the other cellar-dwellers this year.
Florida has three players hitting better than .265, five players with more than 5 home runs, And four players with more than 35 RBI’s.
Houston has three players hitting .265 or better, five players with more than 5 home runs, and five players with more than 35 RBI’s.
Baltimore has four players hitting better than .265, eight players with more than 5 home runs, and three players with 35 or more RBI’s.
Kansas City has four players hitting .265 or better, six players with 5 home runs or more, and four players with more than 35 RBI’s.
Finally, Oakland has no player hitting over .265, four players with 5 or more home runs, and only one player with more than 35 RBI’s.
The Padres offense is so far gone, you may think it ran off with the A’s. Maybe they’re sharing Piña Coladas on some distant beach together. Maybe they traveled to a baseball-friendly jurisdiction, got married, and spawned a bunch of offense-deficient minor league teams. Wherever the offense went, at least we can rest assured the A’s are just about as bad.
This will be a defining moment in Jed Hoyer’s career. Does he follow in the footsteps of Kevin Towers and get more with less, or does he fall flat on his face, dragging the club down with him for years to come?
Padres fans like myself will continue to keep the faith, we will hope for another breakout 90-win season, and we will push through the losses. But all we can do is hope for a little more offense.