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In case you missed it, the Padres have basically admitted their rotation isn’t very strong.
San Diego has upwards of 10 candidates for five spots as it begins exhibition play Saturday, but none of them was overly effective last season (see the list below). Manager Andy Green, therefore, is flirting with the idea of limiting starters’ innings during the season and piggybacking a starter and a reliever who might split the first two to three trips through the batting order. Pitchers could also shift between starting and relieving.
Green is trying to sell the notion that the Padres are being forward-thinking, that they want to take advantage of their depth and create better matchups. It sounds more like a way to mask their lack of frontline starters.
As of this writing, the Padres’ main rotation candidates (as listed on MLB.com’s depth chart) are Clayton Richard, Jered Weaver, Jhoulys Chacin, Luis Perdomo, Christian Friedrich, Trevor Cahill, Jarred Cosart and Paul Clemens. Tyrell Jenkins and Erik Johnson also are in the mix. The group’s 2016 stats show how underwhelming these guys are:
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On the mound, San Diego’s 4.43 team ERA ranked in the bottom half of the league, and Padres pitchers allowed the fourth-most home runs.
On offense, the bright spot was Wil Myers, who led the team with 28 homers, 94 RBIs and 3.2 wins above replacement (WAR). Among pitchers, Drew Pomeranz was the lone starter with a winning record, 8-7, though he posted a strong 2.47 ERA.
Apart from that? Well …
It was yet another forgettable season in a string of forgettable seasons. It’s what San Diego has come to expect from its baseball team.