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Just what are the Padres doing?

Nov 15, 2011, 5:54 PM EDT

Josh Byrnes AP

The Padres currently have 20 position players on their 40-man roster and all but two of them will be 25 or older as of next July 1.

Of the two younger, one, Jeudy Valdez, is pretty much guaranteed to spend all of next season in the minors. The other, Anthony Rizzo, should take over as the team’s starting first baseman at some point.

That’s 19 players who should be viable candidates for the major league roster come Opening Day or who shouldn’t be on the 40-man in the first place.

Now, obviously the Padres were going to add at least one or two bats this winter. But Mark Kotsay? On Nov. 15? What good is that supposed to do?

The Padres have oodles of fringe guys in Jesus Guzman, Kyle Blanks, Will Venable, James Darnell, Logan Forsythe, Chris Denorfia, Aaron Cunningham and Blake Tekotte. They’re also still carrying Jeremy Hermida, though he’s almost certainly a goner. It seems like a given now that Denorfia and Kotsay will have bench spots, which makes one wonder how Guzman, Blanks and Venable are going to fit in if the Padres can actually bring in a legitimate roster upgrade at some point.

And, make no mistake, the Padres need to bring in a legitimate roster upgrade at some point.

The Kotsay addition is one that lacks any imagination at all. Someone said “we need a veteran presence on our bench” and while Kotsay certainly has plenty of that to offer, it comes at the expense of on-base percentage and power. If he proves his value to the Padres, it will be as a coach, not as a piece on the 25-man roster taking the roster spot of someone 10 years younger and at-bats from more viable players.

  1. yankeesgameday - Nov 15, 2011 at 6:23 PM

    Umm…don’t care?

  2. ThisIsBaseball - Nov 15, 2011 at 6:37 PM

    Rule 5 draft protection?

  3. pisano - Nov 15, 2011 at 7:02 PM

    All the Padres care about is spending as little as possible to put a team on the field. Without a doubt the cheapest team in sport.

  4. vanmorrissey - Nov 15, 2011 at 7:14 PM

    Hah, this is pretty funny Matthew. Who you call fringe players are what Padres call starting lineup. Those other players had tryouts all second half of the year and see what an amazing record they ended with, uh, oh yeah, 71-91. So management is so smart they expect to roll out the same players and expect different results with no roster changes? Fans are not that stupid and expect another 70 win year.

  5. jackkoho - Nov 15, 2011 at 7:26 PM

    did I miss something? how does being over age 25 make you not viable for the 40 man? Did you mean to write 35?

    • Matthew Pouliot - Nov 15, 2011 at 8:12 PM

      No, I was more trying to say that by 25, a player is either ready for the majors or he’s not worth keeping around. The Padres have a bunch of fringe talents like that, and instead of doing something with them, they’re signing Mark Kotsay.

  6. hushbrother - Nov 15, 2011 at 8:24 PM

    Kotsay was useless when he was filling in for the injured Mike Lowell back in 2008. Why in the holy Jehoshaphat would a team sign him to a contract expecting him to perform worth a crap four years later? He hits one homer in the LDS and suddenly teams see him as a power bat off the bench. Dumb

  7. proudlycanadian - Nov 15, 2011 at 8:28 PM

    The Padres are doing what any padre does. They are praying for divine intervention.

  8. Tyree Studio - Nov 15, 2011 at 8:48 PM

    At least they have a new logo.

  9. canowack - Nov 15, 2011 at 9:31 PM

    It’s a wonder why Jed Hoyer left…

  10. icanspeel - Nov 15, 2011 at 9:36 PM

    I’d like to know the same thing.. I am probably 1 of very few Padres fans on this site, but this team is baffling. They have bad drafts, can’t afford free agents, sign players out of their prime in hopes they miraculously bounce back and it’s like they don’t even try to compete now.. Even after the strong 2010 showing their reaction was to lose most the players who contributed to the winning record in 2010

  11. rcali - Nov 15, 2011 at 9:44 PM

    Padres have found out that if you can reduce attendance at Petco park you can hire less people to work on game day and turn off the lights in most areas of the ballpark. Less money spent on cleaning up as well!

  12. crankyfrankie - Nov 15, 2011 at 10:35 PM

    Interesting post Matthew and I am , hopefully, looking forward to that critical eye being turned to other teams in the major. I remember when my ballclub seemed to have a similar attitude and how frustrating it was for me. My sympathy to you Padre fans.

  13. silverdeer - Nov 16, 2011 at 7:39 AM

    What did they do? Bring back Randy Smith?

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