Quantcast

Padres Bullpen Goes Star Wars Themed

Heath Bell has been sporting a Yoda backpack for good luck and it apparently inspired some sort of mini-Star Wars convention in the Padres bullpen Thursday, Big League Stew pointed out. You can see the Yoda backpack hanging on the left while Bell and two others wear their towels in Princess Leia-style wrappings.

Those darned relief pitchers will do just about anything to stay awake. At least it’s better than getting caught sleeping in the bullpen like this clown was. Check out more pictures of the Star Wars crew at Big League Stew.

Umpire Joe West Stubbornly Takes a Run Away from Padres on Play He Didn’t See

The San Diego Padres already have a tough enough time scoring runs as it is. The last thing they need is umpires taking runs away from them. Sadly, that’s exactly what happened on Tuesday night thanks to familiar foe Joe West.

The Pads were tied with the D-Backs 1-1 in the top of the 2nd and Eric Patterson led off the inning with a triple. The next batter, catcher Rob Johnson, hit a line drive to right fielder Justin Upton. Patterson got back to the bag quickly to tag up, went home, and beat the throw. It looked like San Diego had a 2-1 lead. But Arizona appealed to see if Patterson left the bag to early and umpire Joe West said he did, reversing the run and turning it into a double play.

Padres manager Bud Black went out to discuss the call, and lip reading shows West told Black that Patterson left before Upton caught the ball. First off, replays on both the Padres and the Diamondbacks telecasts show Patterson did not leave early. Secondly, they both also show that WEST WASN’T EVEN WATCHING THE BAG!!!

Here’s a picture that shows West was watching the right fielder and not the bag:

[Read more...]

Golf Club Put up as Foul Pole in Petco Park

Sponsoring your foul pole with a golf club? That my friends is called genius marketing. The San Diego Padres are breaking some ground at Petco Park by attaching a replica 88-foot TaylorMade driver to their foul pole in right field. The club is a replica of TaylorMade’s R11 driver that debuted in January and it features a white club face as you can see in the picture courtesy of the San Diego Union-Tribune.

As part of the cross-promotional efforts between the two organizations, Natalie Gulbis will throw out the first pitch at Thursday’s Padres game and manager Bud Black will take a trip to TaylorMade headquarters.

My only question is if they can erect an 88-foot club on the poll, why can’t they re-name it and make it the “fair pole” since any ball that hits it is actually fair? Just a question between friends. Hey, I have another suggestion for TaylorMade. While they’re at it, can they fix this problem in Fenway Park?

Here’s a video of the pole being made:

Earthquake Interrupts Padres Game in SD

It wasn’t anything near the Bay Bridge series 6.9 earthquake that interrupted the A’s/Giants World Series in 1989, but the 5.7 earthquake in San Diego on Tuesday had people rattled. The Blue Jays beat the Padres 6-3 but the game was momentarily delayed in the 8th inning after David Eckstein’s groundout because of the quake. After the brief delay, Chase Headley stepped to the plate and the game continued but the quake didn’t rattle Toronto’s pitchers. For the people from the West Coast the 5.7 earthquake was no big deal. From those unfamiliar with quakes, such as Headley, it was uncomfortable. Check out what the quake was like at Petco Park with this video of the San Diego earthquake during the Padres game:

Sorry to break it to you Dick Enberg, but that was an earthquake, not a funky chicken. Actually, it was an aftershock, not even an earthquake! If you’re from Southern California then shakes like these are commonplace. If you’re not, you’re really not missing out on anything special. Think kiddie roller coaster.

Sources:
Shaky night for Padres [The San Diego Union-Tribune]
Video Credit: YouTube user Chargers705

Bust Matt Bush Busted at Bar, Again

If this story looks familiar to you, it’s because we went through this whole thing four years ago. Matt Bush was the No. 1 overall selection in the 2004 MLB draft. The Padres took the local product ahead of top talents who have already produced in the big leagues such as Justin Verlander and Jered Weaver, because they were looking to cut costs. So far that strategy hasn’t paid off for them with Bush. Bush was suspended by the team before he even played a game in their system because of an altercation outside a nightclub. Yes, that was 18-year-old Matt Bush, the recent top overall pick in the draft, being arrested and charged for one felony and three misdemeanors. Despite saying he had changed, Bush was up to his old tricks recently, getting into another altercation at a Peoria bar. Nice. So far the Padres are playing the Fight Club response — the first rule about Matt Bush’s problems off the field is you do not talk about Matt Bush’s problems off the field.

This guy is just an utter mess. After stinking as a hitter trying to play shortstop in his first two years in the minors, the Padres decided to turn him into a pitcher. That plan was working — for like two weeks — until Bush hurt his elbow and had to get Tommy John surgery. And that brings us to the present day where Bush is supposed to be rehabbing his injury. Instead, Bush is spending his time getting into bar fights. Again. What a bust. Doesn’t he realize he has more responsibility as a first overall pick to represent his organization in a better light? Does he realize that he’s working on becoming the biggest bust in MLB draft history? Can he really be OK with that? How can he not have more pride than that? Makes you really scratch your head.

(via Ballhype)

Dodgers, Padres, Baseball, in China?

I wasn’t too happy about the NFL going to London, and I’m not too fond of the NBA globalization efforts. Pretty soon our sports won’t even be our sports, if the current league execs have their ways. Why? Globalization gives the owners and leagues more opportunity to generate revenue. And with that, we lose home games to watch and get thought of as being less important in the eyes of clubs. This all brings me to the announcement that the Dodgers and Padres will play an exhibition game in China. Everyone wants to crack the Chinese market, but thankfully it appears as if baseball there won’t work. “Explaining the rules is hard enough in the USA to people who are new,” Dodgers Manager Joe Torre said at a news conference here Thursday. “You have to be able to witness the game.” My favorite comment however, was this as a selling point for baseball in China:

Gene Orza, chief operating officer of the MLB Players Assn., was more blunt on the subject of Asian physique.

“We’ve got to tell these children, ‘You’re not going to grow to be a basketball player. You’re too short. Try baseball,’ ” he said.

I’m sure that’s exactly what they want to hear. Gene Orza always good for a chuckle. Good thing baseball hasn’t exactly caught on over there, you know, being thought of as a counter-revolutionary sport and all. There’s one, and only one thing that could be useful about baseball in China: there’s 1.3 billion arms over there — certainly one of them has to have a better arm than the likes of Brett Tomko, right?

Padres Wisely Gambling on Mark Prior

Prior Wood CoverESPN, whose reporter Buster Olney wrote up the news of Prior’s agreement to a one-year, $1 million deal with San Diego, has a great graphic on Prior. In 2003, he won 18 games and finished third in NL Cy Young voting. In 57 starts since then, Mark Prior has won just 18 games. I don’t think anything else can better describe Prior’s downfall. Regardless of Prior’s lack of recent success, I agree with Obscure Sports Quarterly and think the signing was a wise gamble for Kevin Towers and the Padres.

With the rest of the NL West actively beefing up this offseason, San Diego needs to make some moves. They’ve acquired Jim Edmonds and signed Tadahito Iguchi and Randy Wolf. Their offense is so anemic they’ll need all the pitching they can muster. Even though he might not be able to pitch until June, should Prior give San Diego just 7-8 good starts before he gets hurt again, he’ll have been well worth the money.

Arizona is the defending NL West champ and they improved significantly by adding Haren. The Rockies re-signed Aaron Cook and added a few relievers. The Dodgers brought in Andruw Jones and Kuroda. The Giants signed Aaron Rowand (hehehe). With a small budget to work with, the least San Diego can do is gamble on a pitcher like Prior who has a high ceiling. For only a million bucks, the investment was well worth it and makes me wonder why no other team tossed out a few more greenbacks for the rights to Prior.

(Though this post has nothing to do with Kerry Wood, it has everything to do with the picture I selected. Oh the days, Cubs fans.)