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Mat Latos is in need of a dose of maturity

Sep 29, 2010, 4:32 PM EDT

Mat Latos has been fantastic this year. I want to say that at the outset. If he doesn’t pitch like he’s pitched most of the season the Padres are not in this thing right now. He’s taken the ace role and, even if he may be petering out a bit under the workload as the season ends, he deserves some credit for his moxy.

But he also deserves a figurative kick in the pants right now. Partially for what looked like some pouting in last night’s game against the Cubs — he was clearly miffed by the umpire’s strike zone and the Padres’ defensive lapses, both his teammates’ and his own — but also for these comments he made to Scott Miller of CBS Sports.com, talking about the hole in which the Padres currently find themselves:

“Baseball works in funny ways,” said Latos, now 0-4 with a 10.13 ERA
over his past four starts. “The only way I could honestly put it is, we
could be like the Giants and go and change our whole lineup, put guys
with ‘San Francisco Giants’  across their jerseys. We didn’t.

“We added two guys [Miguel Tejada and Ryan Ludwick,
now hitting .221 with five homers in 54 games with the Padres]. We’ve
been the same team all year. We haven’t just gone and grabbed guys from
other teams.”

Welcome to baseball, Mat.  Teams make trades for players, be they your team’s two guys or the six or seven players the Giants have brought in over the course of the year.  It makes you no more morally or ethically superior to the Giants. It in no way constitutes an excuse for poor performance by the players who remain.  It does, however, make you look really, really immature to be complaining about such things.

Latos has one start left this season. It will come against those Giants, be they authentic, in his estimation, or fraudulent.  They’ll all be trying to hit the cover off the ball when Latos pitches it to them.  He had best concentrate more on that and less on commenting on which team is doing a better job of keeping it real.

  1. Filmter - Sep 29, 2010 at 4:49 PM

    I have heard players say some dumb things before, but never anything like this. What game does he think he is playing? What does he think a pennant race is all about? Latos needs to mature and train a little go he doesn’t get gassed in september and put up numbers like 0-4, 10.13.

  2. Chris Fiorentino - Sep 29, 2010 at 5:14 PM

    Who did the Giants get mid-season? Barry Bonds? Albert Pujols? They got an off-the-scrap-heap Pat Burrell, who the Padres could also have picked up. Did I miss someone?

  3. Griffey's Gigantism - Sep 29, 2010 at 5:21 PM

    Or, Mat, another way you could be like the Giants is to actually perform excellently in September (Lincecum, Cain, Sanchez have all been dominant) as opposed to the way *you* performed. Yeah, that’s another little way you could be like the Giants.

  4. OldSkoolRules - Sep 29, 2010 at 5:29 PM

    Bullpen Pitchers picked up :
    Javier Lopez, Ramon Ramirez, Chris Ray
    Position Players:
    Pat Burrell, Mike Fontenot, Jose Guillen, Cody Ross (but he was selected to block other teams, not sure why)
    Burrell was sitting at home because no one picked him up after the Rays released him. No one even called, except the Giants! Fontenot was insurance because of issues with FSanchez health, Sandoval/Renteria/Uribe on the left infield. No one wanted Guillen because of the clubhouse cancer tag. He has been a great Giant so far.
    So it seems that the Pads went after the big names like Tejada and Ludwick…yes Ludwick is a big name because the Giants should have gone after him. That was a great trade by the Pads…got him for nothing. So the Giants pick up scrubs off the discarded heap and Latos has a problem with how baseball teams pick up players throughout the year. Well we Giants now have bulletin board material when we face him at home.

  5. Chris Fiorentino - Sep 29, 2010 at 5:37 PM

    Wow, 7 guys? Maybe Latos was looking at the quantity over the quality. If he was smart, he just would say WHO???

  6. JimmyY - Sep 29, 2010 at 6:16 PM

    You and the others are taking this WAY out of context. Latos is referring to the fact that the Padres lineup has been almost entirely the same all year, come hell or highwater. They’ve stuck together as a unit, for whatever that’s worth, and they’ve been through it together. So its not a matter of “maturity.” He’s just identifying the fact the Giants added a lot of players to their roster that were not there at the beginning, but whatever, Giants did it their way, its working, enough said. Christ, the freaking media looks for comments and when someone makes one they jump on it like its a free meal.

  7. Schlom - Sep 29, 2010 at 7:44 PM

    I’m going to have to agree with JimmyY here. I don’t see what the big deal is. I think he is praising the Padres management for keeping the entire team together and not getting outside players and breaking up the clubhouse chemistry.
    I’m curious in exactly why anyone would say these are immature comments from Latos.

  8. Granted42 - Sep 29, 2010 at 8:13 PM

    I would have to disagree with JimmyY and Schlom. I clicked on the link and read the related Scott Miller piece. Unless he took that quote from another story, it doesn’t appear to me to be out of context. He could be praising the Padres for only making two changes, but if that were the case, he would have compared it to the moves the Dodgers made that didn’t work out for them. Instead, he compared it to the Giants, who didn’t get any “A” list players, but did make changes to their roster during the season. Changes that any other team could have made.
    No, this quote looks more like what a child would whine when things aren’t going his way. “it’s not fair!” “They just got lucky!” “Cheaters!!!!” “He’s touching me!” It makes me sick that they give grown-up money to boy-like people for playing a child’s game. He should worry less about what the opposition did during the season to improve itself, and more about how to improve himself during the off-season, which for him starts October 5th.

  9. Jasonb - Sep 29, 2010 at 8:25 PM

    I don’t see the big deal with his comments, they aren’t really that bad. The Giants did go out and get a bunch of players, so he pointed out the obvious. He’s a gamer and anyone who knew about him before this year should know he has taken big strides towards maturing and it has helped his game this year

  10. RyanK - Sep 30, 2010 at 11:31 AM

    JimmyY-
    You MUST be a Padre fan, as only a Padre fan would say these comments are out of context. I am a fan of neither team, so perhaps I see this clearly, but what I read is a whiny baby, basically insinuating that the Giants somehow cheated. He is trying to say that the Padres are superior because they started the season with close to the same roster. Look, the Giants didn’t pick up anybody the Padres didn’t have an oppurtunity to pick up. No one wanted to take Pat Burrell, so the Giants took a shot. Good for them. The Giants management should actually be given credit for what they’ve done. They are probably going to win their division. What are GMs supposed to do? Put the team together preseason and then just sit on their hands and pray? If Latos should be peeved at anyone it’s his own front office for not making enough moves. This a Padre team that, from my best estimate, overachieved all year. If anything they should have realized the Giants were slowly getting stronger and should have gotten stronger themselves. But no, I think the Padres thought, a little arrogantly, that they had it in the bag by the beginning of August.
    Long story short, if Mat Latos didn’t feel like they were done, he doesn’t say this.Coupled with Adrian Gonzalez’ latest statements about how he would love to play for the Cubs and admitting that he had played hurt, I would start worrying. C’mon Latos, don’t you know San Diego is supposed to stay classy?

  11. Beat LA - Sep 30, 2010 at 3:09 PM

    Let’s face it, Padres fans, this year your team has been the luckiest team in the entire history of baseball. At least until your 10 game reality check. If the Pads hit a ball down the line it would be fair by two inches EVERY TIME! If their opponents hit the nearly exact ball it would be foul by an inch. The Padres should be a fourth place team. Oh wait that spot is taken by the Bums. How sweet it is.

  12. nedful - Sep 30, 2010 at 3:13 PM

    I have heard stupid comments in my life but this takes the cake. Almost every team in a playoff race tries to acquire players who could help them. If the Giants don’t pick up Pat Burrel then he is threw with baseball. Boche saw potential when no one else did and he made an incredidle acquisition. No one wanted many of the 6 or 7 players they picked up. The Padres were so overconfident that they didn’t make good decisions and it make very well cost them a play off birth. I can not beleive Latos would even try to blame the giants. Lets face it he is 0-4 and cost the Padres dearly. He should have won at least 2 and the Padres would be tied for first in the division and leadng the wild card, Latos if anything should be apologizing to his team for playing so bad when they needed him most. However instead he acts like a 10 year old and blames the Giants. How has that effected his horrible performance in Sept. 0-4 10+ era =self destruction. If he is grown up enough he will offer the press, and especially the Padres apologizes. The Giants probably had good laugh at his ignorant comments. I don’t know if Latos is immuture, a cry baby or just plain stupid. Perhaps he needs to go bak to school and gain and education. I don’t usually put people down because alcohal is often involved and it makes peoples say stupid things Latos has no excuse unless he is retarded or slow.

  13. nedful - Sep 30, 2010 at 3:26 PM

    Latos is an ignorant person. The giants simply did what they needed to do and because Latos was 0-4 with an era in those 4 games over 10. He may have cost the Padres a division championship by playing so horrible when his team needed him most. I feel sorry for people who play the victim. The padres management counted on good performances from Latos and he let them down. When they don’t make the play offs he will be the one to blame. As for the giants they gave guys like Pat the bat a second chance when no one would and it has paid off big. Congradulations for great acquisitions Boche. Go Giants and go home and cry like the 10 year old you are acting like Latos. No one will ever want you on their team with such an immature attitude. I am wondering if the Padres will give you another chance this year considering you cost them 4 games in a playoff race and because of you they are now 2 behind

  14. SteveCheese - Oct 1, 2010 at 3:03 AM

    Latos IS immature, period. Hello?? Most of the rotation is, and its no slight to the Padres or to him. This is the Padres downfall that we all saw coming in July – EVEN THE PADRES FRONT OFFICE did not expect the Padres to do what they did this year. They have a bunch of immature arms that haven’t see the workload of what it takes to being a seasoned pitcher and going the distance of a full year. Latos 0-4, yeah, so, don’t blame him or Richards or LeBlanc for their September – don’t blame the Padres, if you are a Padres fan be thankful you’ve had such a great season, but we all saw the train wreck coming. Not a surprise. The surprise was the fact they are even in the hunt in the last week! But Mat – THERE’S NO CRYING IN BASEBALL!

  15. soundbounder - Oct 1, 2010 at 11:36 AM

    A great talent, but Latos is unfortunately one of the bigger jerks in the game. This is the second or third incident involving him this year. He self destructed in September, and now tries to claim that the Giants are not a real team.
    Equally disgusting has been the Padre fans who have tried to defend this boorish behavior, and ignore that their team obtained Tejada and Ludwick (two starters) at the deadline.
    Sorry Latos, sorry Padre fans, there is nothing noble about blowing a 6 game lead. IMO, they all need to grow up.

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