Okay so one night I got bored and decided to look back at the rosters of the last few years and see where some of those guys ended up and who they play for now. It was fun for like a couple minutes but then it got real depressing when I saw just how many of those guys are still gritting it out in the minors. It was then that I decided to write up some of those names for you guys to read about, whether you want it or not.
Now I know this fanpost might (will) elicit a lot of why's and who gives a ****'s, and that's all fine and good, but what I really hope happens is for us to just reminisce on all these names of open thread past. Some we cared about, some that we didn't, and some we wish had never entered our collective conscience.
I decided to stay more recent with the names (last 2-3 seasons) since any further back and you just get guys that are retired and doing who knows what. The names included will range anywhere from "who the crap is that" (Jim Brower) to "I have a jersey with his ****ing name on it" (Sean Burroughs).
- Rob Bowen: Released by Oakland before this season and is now a free agent. Yep.
- Marcus Giles: Last I heard he had decided to not report to the Dodgers' Triple A team while in the car driving there. Turns out he also signed with the Phillies but didn't make the team. I guess he lives in San Diego now as a free agent, wondering if his brother really is injured.
- Milton Bradley: Hm.
- Jack Cassel: I think there might've been a point that people saw him as more successful than his brother, but after last year that's definitely over. Now he's in the Indians organization with a 5.78 at AAA while his brother quarterbacks the Kansas City Chiefs.
- Hiram Bocachica: Little Mouth signed with the Saitama Seibu Lions after he left us, and helped them win the Japan series with a home run in game 7. Plus he has his own [awesome] website.
- Terrmel Sledge: The greatest Padres left fielder of the last 50 years, ol' Secret Pop now plays for the Hokkaido Nippon Ham Fighters on the same team as Yu Darvish and Brian Sweeney (who'll show up later on this list). A nation wept when it was announced that he had left for Japan, and the Padres could never recover from such a devastating blow. They were 177-148 with him and now 132-181 without him, and I'm almost certain that KT still says him name out loud in his sleep. I mean, who can forget his big home runs against the Giants down the stretch, and his dances with Dave Roberts in left-center? And making this face after striking out? Pfft, not me.
- Royce Ring: The other reliever we got for Jon Adkins and Ben Johnson was released by Atlanta after we traded him for Wil Ledezma (in one of the more inconsequential trades we've ever made). He got picked up by St. Louis and now pitches for their AAA team with a 3.04 ERA. Exciting, no?
- Doug Brocail: Still pitching pretty well for Houston, but has been on and off the DL all year. He's on it right now, actually.
- Mike Thompson: Went to Pittsburgh after he left the Padres, but never reached the big leagues before he became a free agent this year. Now he does...whatever, I dunno. I remember when Channel 4 showed his friends in the stands during his big league debut at Arizona, and now I wonder what those guys do now that he's not playing. Do they offer him words of encouragement, telling him that "things'll work out soon" and "it'll all be okay in the end", or do they urge him to consider other alternatives to professional baseball? Has he found a nice, well-paying job to support himself and his family (?) in the meantime? I hope so.
- Brady Clark: He may or may not have cost us game 163 with his play in CF, since he was the replacement when Mike Cameron got stepped on. After that he went to the Mets and made the Opening Day roster cause Moises Alou was injured. When he got sent back down a month later he got injured himself and missed the rest of the season. Now he's a free agent doing who knows what with his life. He has a respectable .277 career average so I hope he signs on with someone, but he may not be healthy enough or something. Here's him attempting to catch a ball in game 162.
- Oscar Robles: My only memory of Oscar Robles is him pinch hitting late in a game to lay down a bunt like every other game. After 2007 he was claimed by the Phillies but now plays in the Mexican league for the Mexico City Reds hitting a robust .351/.432/.465 in 100 games. But he only had 3 sacrifice hits, so I don't think he's trying hard enough.
- Morgan Ensberg: He's a free agent now, but he played with the Yankees in 2008 and went to Spring Training with the Rays this year. I guess he's like buddies with Derek Jeter now or something. Probably thinks he's better than us.
- Jose Cruz Jr.: Once the owner of the best socks in baseball, Jose Cruz Jr. went on to play for the Yankees and Astros in some capacity, but now does analysis work for MLB.com. Or at least that's what Wikipedia says, since I can't find any signs of his "analysis" on MLB.com. Beyond that though, there's this pretty cool interview with him about getting released from the Astros, the team his more successful dad played for. It's kinda like what's going on with Tony Gwynn Jr., except Jose Cruz Jr. hardly played at all and only hit .122 and never contributed. Still though, it's interesting hearing from someone about getting cut and not having a whole lot of other options afterwords.
- Doug Mirabelli: Eh, who cares.
- Josh Barfield: Still gritting it out at AAA Columbus hitting .252/.271/.331, which is a shame since he was pretty good in 2006.
- Ben Johnson: Ah yes, that guy. Since being traded to the Mets for Heath Bell and Royce Ring, Johnson never really got a lot of looks at the major league level. He mostly was called up whenever someone got hurt and was back and forth all year until he was released in May of 2008. He has yet to sign with anyone else. But I have to ask, was he always this...large? It looks like he gained a lot of weight when he was in New York. Also, Johnson has the unfortunate distinction of being the guy that the Padres got in a trade INSTEAD of Albert Pujols. Oh yes, that's right. The Padres wanted either Pujols or Johnson and they let the Cardinals choose between the two. They chose Johnson.
- Dewon Brazelton: The gem of Spring Training 2006 never got it together during the season, and was let go after it was over. He then spent some amount of time with the Royals, Pirates, and Cardinals, but never reached the majors. He now plays for the Camden Riversharks, a non-MLB affiliated team in the Atlantic League.
- Jon Adkins: The final piece of the Heath Bell trade, Adkins only ended up throwing 1 inning for the Mets before getting released that October. Cincinnati picked him up and let him throw 3.2 innings with 1 ER. Basically he never got a lot of chances to stay in the majors, so now he's the closer for the Lotte Giants in Korea, and the only white guy on the roster.
- Brian Sweeney: As mentioned earlier, Sweeney went straight to the Hokkaido Nippon Ham Fighters after being with the Padres. Here's a picture of him with his kids, and here's a nice article on him from last year.
- Jim Brower: Probably the only name so far that I have no recognition of at all. He only pitched in 6 games with a 9.39 (!) ERA for the Padres, so that probably explains why. After jumping around a couple teams (Yankees, Reds, Cubs, Astros) he settled in Japan with the Hiroshima Toyo Carp.
- Mark Bellhorn: Mark's only real shining moment with the Padres was when he helped spark a 5-run comeback against the Dodgers at the end of April that started another one of their magical months of May. Yeah, it's pretty sad when his best moment was when he simply contributed to something special. Now he's in the Rockies organization hitting .270/.371/.510. At least he's got a ring.
- Todd Walker: KT got a lot of flack when he traded for a second baseman to fill our hole at third base, but Todd didn't do all that badly down the stretch, hitting .282/.366/.419. Once we released him, he went and signed with Oakland, but only played in 17 games before getting dropped. He doesn't seem to be playing still so he probably retired (he's 36).
- Manny Alexander: Alexander filled in a couple times for Khalil but never hit over .200. After leaving the Padres he went to Washington, then fluttered around in Italy until the Phillies signed him to a minor league deal in July of this year. That being said, he doesn't seem to have played at all for the Phillies' minor league teams, leading me to believe that Wikipedia has lied to me again. Beyond all that though, he may or may not be responsible for ruining some kid's life back in 2000 (long article). If that's true then I hope he never plays again.
- Sean Burroughs: Pretty much the only reason I reached back to 2005 was so I could include Burroughs. The Bachelor sucked with the Devil Rays and then sucked with the Mariners before becoming a permanent free agent in 2007. He's a career .280 hitter and had that one hit in the bottom of the 10th to end Petco's first game, so he's got that going for him. He also has a Facebook fan page with a picture of him where he has at least 3 chins. I hope one day some bored San Diego writer decides to do research on where he is now, like they did with Ryan Leaf. I'd read that.
- Robert Fick: Robert Fick and his face full of freckles played with the Nationals after we released him and now plays for the Phil Nevin-managed Orange County Flyers. All I remember about him is that he was a decent bench player and a total goofball according to Mark Grant, who mentioned it every time he went to bat.
**UPDATE** more names
- Pedro Astacio: This guy had like the biggest...backside that I had ever seen on a major league pitcher, and I would feel weird saying that but Mark Grant said it once on air too so it's okay. We released him in 2005 so he went and signed with the Nationals, putting up a 5.98 ERA in 17 starts. He became a free agent in 2007 and hasn't pitched since, but he's apparently an amateur Jai Alai player who's trying to get Pakistani citizenship so he can play there. I couldn't find anything else about this, so Wikipedia better not be lying to me this time.
- Chris Hammond: The Padres were the second to last team Hammond played for, as he left us for the Reds in 2006. He put up a 6.91 so he pretty much retired after that. Overall he had a pretty good, long career as a starting pitcher/reliever over 16 season. Or at least good compared to some of the other names on this list. I still have fond memories of Mark Grant orgasming over his 58 MPH changeup.
- Darrell May: We traded Terrence Long and Dennis Tankersley for him so I guess our standards were pretty low. He did beat Johan Santana on that one Sunday game in Minnesota, but that wasn't enough for KT cause he traded him and Tim Redding to the Yankees for Paul Quantrill. In New York he had a 16.71 ERA in 7 innings, so he pretty much sucked. Once they let him go he did sign on with the Twins and Reds, but didn't pitch in the bigs for either of them, and hasn't pitched since. Here's him on his wedding day in 2008. Or at least someone else named Darrell May who looks an awful lot like him.
- Miguel Ojeda: You probably remember that he went and played with the Rockies in 2006, but might not have known that he was traded to the Rangers during the season. He signed with them again for 2007 but was demoted on April 1 to AAA and designated for assignment a month later. He appears to be playing for Venados Mazatlan (or Mazatlan Venados?) along with Walter Silva, Ruben Rivera, and Esteban Loaiza. He has a son named Leonardo.
- Adam Hyzdu: When this guy came over from Boston with his long hair and devil-may-care attitude, I kind of saw him as someone who represented the "craziness" of the Red Sox clubhouse, which I admired at the time. Now I kinda hate it and subsequently dislike him. I guess he went back to Boston in 2006 and then signed on with the Rangers after getting released. In 2007 he played for the Fukuoka SoftBank Hawks, but didn't sign a contract so now he's a free agent who'll probably never play again.
- Tim Redding: As a lot of you probably know, Redding actually had some pretty good seasons in 2007 and 2008 for the Nationals, enough to get a nice contract from the Mets. He's still with the Mets now, pitching well in his last couple of starts. I'm not sure if they'll keep him around next season when they get Santana back, but he could sign with someone else. This is good news for him since he looked really bad as a Padre.
- Paul Quantrill: 2005 was actually his last year in the majors, as he finished the year with the Marlins. He played for Canada in the WBC in 2006, and announced that he was retiring. He's now a coach on the Canada WBC team, meaning he'll only coach once every 4 years.
- Adam Eaton: It was no secret that he struggled big time in Texas in only 65 innings yet still earned a contract from Philadelphia. Well he struggled there too in 2007 and 2008 but managed to get a ring out if it anyway (which he got booed for when he went to pick it up). He's since played (terribly) for Baltimore and Colorado in 2009, mostly in relief (just 8 starts). He was designated for assignment on Sept 9th and is now playing for the AAA Sky Sox in Colorado Springs. This picture makes me feel sad. And this one makes me laugh.
- Akinori Otsuka: The man that truly pioneered Corky's commercials, and the other half of the Chris Young-Adrian Gonzalez trade never could forgive the Padres for trading him to the Rangers. He did very well for Texas in 2006 and 2007 (2.11 and 2.51 ERAs) despite having nagging injuries. After he became a free agent in 2007 he underwent elbow surgery in 2008, and is now a free agent who hopes to sign on with someone. He's 37 years old but he's had some good years, so we might see someone take a chance on him. I for one woud love to see him with the Padres again, but that probably won't happen.
- Joe Randa: The Joker left the Padres for Pittsburgh in 2006, and ruined Chris Young's no-hitter ("get that Mike!!") that year. After 2006 though he retired, and is now a host on some radio show in Kansas City (Sports Radio 810). He doesn't appear to be on the "Personalities" page on their website, so either he got fired or Wiki lied yet again.
So there you have it,
3.1 4 years worth of former Padres in one long list. I realize most of you will skim it but whatever. It was kinda fun thinking back to 07 and 06 when we were contending and stuff.