In my last post, I noted that the Padres were still in contention for the No. 1 pick next year.
Things have changed quite considerably, haven't they?
I'm the type of person to take a window of hope -- any glimmering chance -- and run with it. I'll run all the way home on a single if I need to.
And that's why I believe the Padres could make a run for the playoffs.
Before you stop reading this article, scoffing at what you believe to be the most ridiculous post you've ever read in the history of Gaslamp Ball... just hear me out. I only want a few minutes of your time. You'll be much more optimistic -- I promise.
As of 9/6/2012, the Padres sport a 64-74 record. At the time of my last post, the Padres were about to begin a five-game losing streak. It appeared as if they were proving me right. Then they did the unthinkable, winning 10 of 11, including sweeps over the Pittsburgh Pirates and Arizona Diamondbacks. They then took 2-of-3 from the Atlanta Braves and 2-of-3 from the Los Angeles Dodgers.
That's pretty damn good.
We'll start with their chances at the Wild Card.
However unlikely it may seem (don't start pulling out those fancy HTC phones, calling everyone to tell them that I'm crazy), the Padres have an outside shot at making the playoffs. Would it be the most amazing, ridiculous run to the playoffs of all-time?
The Padres still play the Diamondbacks six more times this season. With the Pads hot, the Diamondbacks will have their work cut out for them again. They also play the Brewers in the last series of the regular season. Wins (and series wins) will count for much more than bragging rights against these teams.
Sitting atop the Wild Card standings right now are the St. Louis Cardinals (tied with the Braves). The Padres get them for a three-game set Sept. 10-12.
With two series against the Diamondbacks, one against the Brewers and one against the Cardinals, that accounts for half of the remaining series left in the regular season. Win them, and you stand a fighting chance at making the playoffs.After all, you don't stand much of a chance at gaining ground if you're not playing the teams you are chasing. (Sorry for the cruel memory, but it's true).
But what about the other series for the Padres?
The Padres still have two series against the San Francisco Giants, who currently sit on top of the NL West. They've got one more series with the Dodgers, who are also in the running for a Wild Card spot, should they not run down the Giants in the final month of the season. The other series (scheduled for Sept. 14-16) is against the Colorado Rockies, who are in last place in the NL West.
Unfortunately for the Padres, the Wild Card leaders play out like this:
The Braves have just one series against a team that is above .500, in the Washington Nationals. The Cardinals have three series against teams over .500. The Pirates also play three series against teams over .500, but they also play three series against the two worst teams in baseball. The Dodgers, who are tied with the Pirates at 1.5 games behind the Braves and Cardinals play, have the toughest schedule of those teams, playing five series against division leaders or teams above .500.
So what do you think? Can the Padres continue their hot streak and pull off a miracle?
I sure hope so. Make my baseball year.