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Penalty based contracts

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Can we start fining players for making mistakes? Any time there's a lapse of concentration that displays itself on the field, I want the offending player hit with a $10,000 fine. I want batters who get caught looking at a third pitch strike hit with a $1,000 fine. If you don't call for a fly ball, or if a fly ball is called for and you don't give way: $15,000.

This is what annoys me most about the way the Padres are playing: I truly believe that if they make it to the playoffs, they'll do well. I'm confident they would end up in the NL Championship game, and I think they have as a good a chance as anybody to make it to the World Series.

The reason that annoys me is it shouldn't be that way. The postseason should be reserved for the best teams in the regular season. It should be a showcase of the type of baseball the fans have been enjoying all year. It shouldn't be a place where the top three teams and some other default team duke it out. This isn't the NBA. The regular season should count for something.

As much as I want the Padres to do well in the postseason, and as hard as I've tried to tell myself that what I'm watching is OK, I still can't shake that feeling in my gut that the Padres are treating this thing like it's a joke and it turns my stomache.