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The Padres could be due for a shakeup

Jun 13, 2014, 1:00 PM EDT

Could Bud Black be on the chopping block?

Ken Rosenthal reports that the San Diego Padres could be in for a big shakeup. And it could result in Bud Black losing his job:

Ron Fowler, the team’s executive chairman, indicated in an e-mail to FOX Sports on Thursday night that changes could be imminent for his struggling franchise.

“At this time, we will not be discussing our situation with any parties outside of our senior management circle,” Fowler said.

“That said, we are terribly disappointed in the team’s offense this year and staying the course (waiting for a turnaround) is becoming less appealing as the ugly losses continue.”

The Padres have baseball’s worst offense by far. And while not considered to be a serious contender by most, have been identified by many commentators over the past couple of years as having the potential to be a surprise team of sorts. But nothing they’ve done has panned out. In situations like this, hitting coaches get fired and maybe — as Rosenthal suggests — manager Bud Black could be in trouble too.

Ultimately, the biggest problem is that the Padres lack, you know, good hitters. But that’s not something that is quickly fixed.

  1. DelawarePhilliesFan - Jun 13, 2014 at 1:08 PM

    Three years ago….getting swept by the Phillies was just a tough series a team needed to put behind them. Now it is cause for a firing squad


  2. bronco58lb - Jun 13, 2014 at 1:09 PM

    I love how this dumb franchise stuck with Yonder Alonso, a.k.a poor man’s James Loney, and gave up on Kyle Blanks, shipping him off to Oakland. Blanks only has a 1.026 OPS so far with Oakland. The Padres had no need for that type of production.

    • fearlessleader - Jun 13, 2014 at 1:24 PM

      Which is all the more reason to wonder why Bud Black is taking most of the heat and Josh Byrnes is getting off relatively easy (thus far, anyway). Black is maddening, but the front office has made one bad move after another.

      • icanspeel - Jun 13, 2014 at 2:13 PM

        Yeah exactly… Black uses a different lineup everday because of what he has been given. Byrnes overvalued his hitters and invested 15 mill in Josh Johnson and Benoit instead of finding a reliable bat for 15 mill.

      • ptfu - Jun 13, 2014 at 7:21 PM

        That’s part of the problem. The Padres have achieved mediocrity at pretty much every position. That means significantly upgrading anywhere is going to be expensive, at least in the short term.

    • natstowngreg - Jun 13, 2014 at 3:05 PM

      Granted, Alonso is no great shakes (.263, .703 OPS in 317 games for the Padres). But Kyle Blanks, based on just 41 plate appearances for the A’s? The same guy who hit .228, .712 OPS for the Padres over 239 games?

    • ch0psuey - Jun 13, 2014 at 8:20 PM

      Bronco58lb – Blanks was giving every opportunity and then some and nothing from him. Padres gave him every chance he could ever want in every position. Remember don’t post If you do not know what you are talking about.

      • gloccamorra - Jun 14, 2014 at 9:03 PM

        Blanks was injured much of the time with plantar fasciitis and Tommy John surgery, and the Padres played him three times more in the outfield corners than his natural position, first base.

  3. sabathiawouldbegoodattheeighthtoo - Jun 13, 2014 at 1:15 PM

    I have thought for years that the Padres need super slugging infielders and super fast outfielders to really thrive in their ballpark. Instead they have outfielders who can’t run or can’t stay healthy (or in Quentin’s case, neither) and some of the lightest-hitting infielders around. They could at least start by trying their slugger with chronic knee problems at 1B?

    • ptfu - Jun 13, 2014 at 8:17 PM

      The Padres have mostly the wrong players for that park. Petco is still a pitchers’ park that eats fly balls. They should build a lineup to take full advantage.*

      The team needs hitters who maximize what the park suppresses least: solid contact. Guys who don’t strike out and have a good line drive %, or at least a good groundball %. Chris Denorfia is no star, but his skills aren’t hindered in San Diego, which makes him relatively more valuable to the Padres.

      You also want guys who prevent the other team from maximizing contact. That means you prioritize good defense and outfielders with speed & range to chase down everything. Looking at you, Cameron Maybin.

      Tony Gwynn would be the ultimate Petco player, and not just because he’s a Hall of Famer who could thrive anywhere. Not striking out, hitting liners and hard grounders, speed, and defense are exactly what you want if Petco’s your home.

      Then again, I suppose they could try for absolute monsters who can crush it in any park, like Adrian Gonzalez of 5-6 years ago. Not easy or cheap to do. Carlos Quentin is this type of guy when he’s healthy. Hit at home and really hit on the road–the Padres have to win road games too.

      • sabathiawouldbegoodattheeighthtoo - Jun 14, 2014 at 11:12 AM

        Exactly, but more specifically, try to get those mashers in the IF so you can have those fleet-of-foot guys chasing flies and liners in the spacious OF. The Yankees OF would look great in Petco, or something similar. If Maybin could ever stay healthy he would be great. Quentin in the OF is a disaster. He can’t stay healthy, and he is a liability out there even when he is healthy.

  4. coloredink5 - Jun 13, 2014 at 1:20 PM

    It seems like the players don’t really care, but i bet if they saw Bud Black get fired they would see that they can lose their jobs, and it would make them try harder. Also the hitting Coaches should get fired as well because i continue to hear that the players are trying to implement what the hitting coaches are telling them to do, and we know how great the hitting coaches because having six regular players under .200 is an accomplishment.

  5. gbrim - Jun 13, 2014 at 1:24 PM

    Byrnes put this team together. He should be the first on the hot seat, if blame is being assigned.

  6. jhb64 - Jun 13, 2014 at 1:46 PM

    All could change they play the METS this weekend

  7. sd619tripleog - Jun 13, 2014 at 1:52 PM

    At least we drafted Johnny Baseball, smh. I love my home teams but I have completely stopped watching and following the Padres. Bud Black isn’t the problem, even though he seems too easy going. The roster that’s been put together sparks zero interest whatsoever except Cashner but based on padres history, he’ll be playing in Boston soon. Byrnes needs to go, he’s yet to do anything to make me think other wise. He’s by far more of a problem AJ smith was for the chargers in the end. #firebyrnes

  8. openthegatesletriversflow - Jun 13, 2014 at 2:25 PM

    They should do something. I’ve done my part by supporting the team and attending games even with this unentertaining roster and abysmal last 6-7 years. Already been to 7 games this season. Matter of fact, I just put down a deposit for a season ticket plan next year. But I disagree with putting this all on Bud Black. Josh Byrnes is the one who put this roster together and he should be held accountable for the team that is on the field.

  9. xpensivewinos - Jun 13, 2014 at 2:32 PM

    The Padres are a joke of an organization…….absolutely pathetic from top to bottom and they’re going to prove it again by firing the hitting coach and the manager and keeping the incompetent GM who put this horrible minor league team together.

    • ch0psuey - Jun 13, 2014 at 8:23 PM

      Just curious what is the team you root for Xpensivewinos?

  10. 13yrsmlbvet - Jun 13, 2014 at 2:33 PM

    Ask the people in AZ how they feel about Byrnes and Hinch. They treated everyone there like absolute dirt.

  11. It's All About Satellites - Jun 13, 2014 at 2:44 PM

    If Black goes and Byrnes doesnt the Padres slide will continue. Byrnes provides the players Black and his staff have to work with and those players, with a few exceptions, are either chronically injured or sub-par players.

    There are far too many players on the Padres team with extreme splits which means a lack of vital continuity in the lineup and some of those platoon players have been forced into playing every day due to the continuing rash of injuries.

    The Padres ownership has opened the purse strings and now has a team record payroll, so the level of spending is not the issue. How that money was spent is. Bad contracts to chronically injured players like Quentin, Johnson and Hundley and multi year deals for Venable, Luebke and Gyorko who are injured or simply not producing have hamstrung the franchise.

    The continual tinkering with the swing mechanics of players by hitting coach Phil Plantier (Byrnes first official hire, and one done in spite of opposition in the organization) has also contributed to a decline of hitting on the team. To top it off, the Padres hired a 2nd hitting coach, Alonzo Powell, who has a diametrically opposing view on hitting than Plantier. Neither was ever successful at hitting for average or good OBP at the major league level. If you cant do, teach?

    Its far past time for a change in San Diego and that change needs to start at the top with Byrnes, Hinch and the rest of the front office. If Black has to go as well that is fine, he will find another managing job soon enough, but Byrnes has had two GM jobs and nearly ruined two franchises in the process.

    • ptfu - Jun 13, 2014 at 7:18 PM

      What’s wrong with platooning? Seems like a good way to get reasonable production out of two lesser players.

      Obviously you’d prefer someone who mashes against all pitching. But if you can’t afford or aren’t smart enough to develop an all-rounder, then platooning isn’t the worst plan in the world. And a platoon guy forced to play against his weak side isn’t much different from a backup player anyway.

  12. chargrz - Jun 13, 2014 at 3:23 PM

    The Padres are last in batting avg. Slugging % , on base % and runs scored. In other words they just cannot hit . Look at the line up they roll out there every night. The only real hitter is Quentin and he is made of balsa wood. Byrnes put the team together and needs to be fired asap. He has made horrible trades and signings and his drafts have not shown much either. I cannot believe the new ownership decided to keep Byrnes on board when they bought the team. Who ever the owners are? Bottom line the team is a joke! The tix are high priced and the product on the field is garbage.

  13. rcali - Jun 13, 2014 at 3:48 PM

    As long as the shake-up doesn’t cost this cheap organization any money, it will happen. Great City, Very Nice Park and area around the park. When an owner is brought in that wants to take winning seriously, it won’t be hard to get the players……and I don’t mean broken down arms like Josh Johnson.

    • gloccamorra - Jun 13, 2014 at 11:29 PM

      They just got new owners last year who added $20 million to the payroll their first year. You may have heard the name of the majority owners – the O’Malleys? The former Dodgers owner Peter O’Malley’s kids and nephews. They know what to do, they’re just biding their time.

  14. soundsofsuccess7 - Jun 13, 2014 at 3:55 PM

    Bud Black is not the problem. The problem is having the cheapest ownership in baseball.

    • drewsylvania - Jun 13, 2014 at 4:08 PM

      Teams can succeed for a while even if they’re cheap. There’s something else going on here. Talent evaluation? Fire the hitting coach?

      I mean, even if you assume that Alonso, Cabrera, Grandal, and Gyorko aren’t that great, they’re still much better than what they’ve been doing so far this season.

    • gloccamorra - Jun 13, 2014 at 11:32 PM

      Jeff Moorad is gone. The O’Malley/Seidler majority owners just increased payroll $20 million in one off-season. Keep up with the news.

  15. icee82 - Jun 13, 2014 at 6:25 PM

    Even San Diego has made Walt Jocketty look good with that Latos’ deal!

  16. wahoo21 - Jun 13, 2014 at 10:27 PM

    Why does Plantier and Powell still have a job…….the worst hitting coaches in baseball?
    Who the heck thought having two hitting coaches was a good idea?

    Padres hitters have no approach, no idea and no clue when they go to the plate and that falls on Plantier/Powell
    Fire these guys and get somebody that knows something about hitting

  17. gloccamorra - Jun 13, 2014 at 11:42 PM

    The Padres are hitting the trifecta. In 2012, the starting staff went on the DL (4 TJ surguries, 2 shoulders and one forearm), with the team using 17 different starters.

    Last year, most of the position players went on the DL/DQ list with the catcher missing 5 months, the first baseman two months, the second baseman a month, the SS suspended for 50 games, the left fielder half the season, and the center fielder almost the entire season.

    This year, the entire starting eight are having off-years at once. The only guys hitting, Seth Smith and Chris Denorfia, are bench players. They say bad news comes in threes, so this should be the last year of the dregs, so if anybody is fired, his replacement will reap the rewards.

    Funny game, this baseball.

  18. jkaflagg - Jun 14, 2014 at 7:19 PM

    Bud Black is a good baseball man, but this organization really needs an overhaul…..with that big stadium they should be able to compete with LA and SF, but they seem to have problems drafting and developing position players…..every year their lineup seems to be nothing more than a bunch of random players as opposed to a team being built up to play together over time…..not Black’s fault but most likely he’ll be the one who pays the price……

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